WAR Main Armenia Versus Azerbaijan War Thread - Open Hostilities Underway Now

jward

passin' thru





MiddleEastWatch
@MiddleEastWatc1

4m

One of the most important agreements in the ceasefire is Armenia allowing Azerbaijani to build a road connecting Azerbaijan to Nakhchivan region, which will be under Russia’s control. It will be a permanent road even if a new Armenian administration tries to nullify the deal.
This road will not only be beneficial for Azerbaijan to connect its territories, but also a great economical benefit for Turkey for trade by having land access into Azerbaijan. Currently Turkey’s only access is through Georgia, but it is longer distance and costly.
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Starrkopf

Veteran Member

MiddleEastWatch
@MiddleEastWatc1

4m

One of the most important agreements in the ceasefire is Armenia allowing Azerbaijani to build a road connecting Azerbaijan to Nakhchivan region, which will be under Russia’s control. It will be a permanent road even if a new Armenian administration tries to nullify the deal.
This road will not only be beneficial for Azerbaijan to connect its territories, but also a great economical benefit for Turkey for trade by having land access into Azerbaijan. Currently Turkey’s only access is through Georgia, but it is longer distance and costly.
View attachment 231689

I had noticed that territory when looking at the maps at the beginning of this and wondered how the hell they got stuff back and forth. Now at least some of the reasons behind this war is starting to become clear. I'm pretty sure they wanted all of it, but I can see how this would be a very enticing compromise for both turkey and azerbaijan.
 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Russia airlifts 2,000 troops to Nagorno Karabakh to block Azeri advance

Nov 10, 2020 @ 9:49
DEBKAFile

“In order to control the ceasefire and halt military actions in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, a Russian peacekeeping contingent is being deployed consisting of 1,960 servicemen, 90 armored vehicles, 380 units of vehicles and special equipment,” the defense ministry in Moscow said early Tuesday. The contingent, flown in by IL-76 planes, is mainly formed of units of the 15th separate motor rifle brigade of the Central Military District, the statement said. They are being posted along the contact line in Nagorno Karabakh and the Lachinsky corridor which connects the enclave with Armenia.

 

jward

passin' thru




EHA News
@eha_news

Nov 10

Only Russian peacekeepers will be deployed to the #Karabakh region, according to Kremlin

''1,960 servicemen with small arms,
90 armored personnel carriers
and 380 motor and special vehicles
will be deployed for a period of five years,''
according to ceasefire agreement.
 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Exodus: Christian Armenians Burn Their Homes as Land Handed to Turkey-Backed Azeris

Armenian

ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP via Getty Images

BREITBART LONDON14 Nov 202038

KALBAJAR, Azerbaijan (AP) — In a bitter farewell to his home of 21 years, Garo Dadevusyan wrenched off its metal roof and prepared to set the stone house on fire. Thick smoke poured from houses that his neighbours had already torched before fleeing this ethnic Armenian village about to come under Azerbaijani control.

The village is to be turned over to Azerbaijan on Sunday as part of territorial concessions in an agreement to end six weeks of intense fighting with Armenian forces. The move gripped its 600 people with fear and anger so deep that they destroyed the homes they once loved.

The settlement — called Karvachar in Armenian — is legally part of Azerbaijan, but it has been under the control of ethnic Armenians since the 1994 end of a war over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. That war left not only Nagorno-Karabakh itself but substantial surrounding territory in Armenian hands.

After years in which sporadic clashes broke out between Azerbaijani and Armenian forces, full-scale fighting began in late September this year. Azerbaijan made relentless military advances, culminating in the seizure of the city of Shusha, a strategically key city and one of strong emotional significance as a longtime centre of Azeri culture.

Two days after Azerbaijan announced it had taken Shusha, Armenia and Azerbaijan signed a Russia-brokered cease-fire under which territory that Armenia occupies outside the formal borders of Nagorno-Karabakh will be gradually ceded.
Muslim Azeris and Christian Armenians once lived together in these regions, however uneasily. Although the cease-fire ends the fighting, it aggravates ethnic animosity.

“In the end, we will blow it up or set it on fire, in order not to leave anything to Muslims,” Dadevusyan said of his house.

He spoke while taking a rest from salvaging what he could from the home, including metal roof panels, and piling it onto an aged flatbed truck.

The truck’s final destination is unclear.

“We are homeless now, do not know where to go and where to live. Do not know where to live. It is very hard,” said his wife Lusine, choked by tears, as they gave the interior of the house a last look.

Dadevusyan’s dismay extended to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Armenia and Russia keep close relations and Russia has a sizeable military base in Armenia, so many Armenians had hoped for support from Moscow. Instead, Russia facilitated the cease-fire and territorial concessions and is sending in nearly 2,000 peacekeepers to enforce it.

“Why has Putin abandoned us?” Dadevusyan said.

Hundreds of thousands of Azeris were displaced by the war that ended in 1994. It is unclear when any civilians might try to settle in Karvachar – which will now be known by its Azeri name Kalbajar – or elsewhere.

Any returns could be wrenching. Settlers will confront the burned, empty shells of houses – or worse. Agdam, which is to be turned over next week, once was a city of about 40,000, but now is an empty sprawl of buildings that were destroyed in the first war or later ruined by pillagers grabbing building materials.

For the Dadevusyans, their sudden relocation is overwhelming beyond words.

“When you spent 21 years here and now need to leave it…,” Garo Dadevusyan said, trailing off, as smoke from nearby burning houses choked the air. Soon, he knew, his house would be one of them.

Jim Heintz in Moscow contributed to this story.

 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Armenia says prevented assassination attempt on prime minister
By Reuters Staff
NOVEMBER 14, 202012:25 PM UPDATED 11 HOURS AGO

YEREVAN (Reuters) - Armenia prevented an assassination attempt on Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and the seizure of power by a group of former officials, the National Security Service (NSS) said on Saturday.

Pashinyan had come under pressure with thousands of demonstrators protesting since Tuesday and demanding he resign over a ceasefire that secured territorial advances for Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh after six weeks of fighting
.

The NSS said its former head Artur Vanetsyan, the former head of the Republican Party parliamentary faction Vahram Baghdasaryan and war volunteer Ashot Minasyan were under arrest.

“The suspects were planning to illegally usurp power by murdering the prime minister and there were already potential candidates being discussed to replace him,” the NSS said in a statement.

Pashinyan said earlier this week he had no choice but to sign the agreement to prevent further territorial losses. He said he was taking personal responsibility for the setbacks, but rejected calls to step down
.

The ceasefire halted military action in and around Nagorno-Karabakh, an enclave internationally recognised as part of Azerbaijan but populated by ethnic Armenians. Under the agreement, 2,000 Russian peacekeeping troops are being deployed to the region.

Since the early 1990s, ethnic Armenians had held military control over all of Nagorno-Karabakh and substantial swathes of Azeri territory surrounding it. They have now lost much of the enclave itself as well as the surrounding territory.

Reporting by Nvard Hovhannisyan; Writing by Margarita Antidze; Editing by David Holmes

 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Azerbaijan delays takeover, denounces fleeing Armenians
Azerbaijan has postponed taking control of a territory ceded by Armenian forces in a cease-fire agreement, but denounced civilians leaving the area for burning houses and committing what it called “ecological terror.”

By JIM HEINTZ Associated Press
15 November 2020, 11:26


Russian peacekeepers' convoy drive through a street in Stepanakert, the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh, on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020. Ethnic Armenian forces had controlled Nagorno-Karabakh and sizeable adjacent territories since the 1994 end of a

Image Icon
The Associated Press
Russian peacekeepers' convoy drive through a street in Stepanakert, the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh, on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020. Ethnic Armenian forces had controlled Nagorno-Karabakh and sizeable adjacent territories since the 1994 end of a separatist war. Fighting resumed in late September and have now ended with an agreement that calls for Azerbaijan to regain control of the outlying territories as well as allowing it to hold on to parts of Nagorno-Karabakh that it seized during the fighting. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

MOSCOW -- Azerbaijan on Sunday postponed taking control of a territory ceded by Armenian forces in a cease-fire agreement, but denounced civilians leaving the area for burning houses and committing what it called “ecological terror.”

The cease-fire ended six weeks of intense fighting between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region and territories outside its formal borders that had been under the control of Armenian forces since 1994. The agreement calls for Azerbaijan to take control of the outlying territories. The first, Kelbajar, was to be turned over on Sunday.

But Azerbaijan agreed to delay the takeover until November 25 after a request from Armenia. Azerbaijani presidential aide Hikmet Hajiyev said worsening weather conditions made the withdrawal of Armenian forces and civilians difficult along the single road through mountainous territory that connects Kelbajar with Armenia.

After the agreement was announced early Tuesday, many distraught residents preparing to evacuate set their houses ablaze to make them unusable to Azerbaijanis who would move in.

“Armenians are damaging the environment and civilian objects. Environmental damage, ecological terror must be prevented,” Hajiyev said.

Prior to a separatist war that ended in 1994, Kelbajar was populated almost exclusively by Azerbaijanis. But the territory then came under Armenian control and Armenians moved in. Azerbaijan deemed their presence illegal.

“The placement and settlement of the Armenian population in the occupied territory of the Kelbajar region was illegal ... All illegal settlements there must be evicted,” Hajiyev said.

The imminent renewal of Azerbaijani control raised wide concerns about the fate of Armenian cultural and religious sites, particularly Dadivank, a noted Armenian Apostolic Church monastery that dates back to the ninth century.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev assured Russian President Vladimir Putin, who negotiated the cease-fire and is sending about 2,000 peacekeeping troops, that Christian churches would be protected.

"Christians of Azerbaijan will have access to these churches,” Aliyev's office said in statement Sunday.

Azerbaijan is about 95% Muslim and Armenia is overwhelmingly Christian. Azerbaijan accuses Armenians of desecrating Muslim sites during their decades of control of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding territories, including housing livestock in mosques.

The Armenian Foreign Ministry on Sunday denounced vandalization of the Ghazanchetsots cathedral in the Azerbaijan-held city of Shusha as “outrageous.” The Armenian Apostolic Church earlier said vandals defaced walls of the church after Azerbaijani forces took the city.

Nagorno-Karabakh was an autonomous republic of Azerbaijan during the Soviet period. A movement to join with Armenia arose in the late Soviet years and after the Soviet Union collapsed, a war erupted in which an estimated 30,000 died and hundreds of thousands of people were displaced.

Sporadic clashes erupted after the war ended in 1994 and international mediators unsuccessfully sought for a resolution of the dispute. Full-scale fighting flared anew on Sept. 27. Azerbaijan made significant advances and a week ago announced that it had seized the strategically critical city of Shusha. The cease-fire agreement came two days later.

Armenia says 1,434 servicemen died in this year's fighting, but civilian casualties are unclear. Azerbaijan hasn't stated its losses.

The cease-fire agreement and cession of territories was a strong blow to Armenia and prompted protests against Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian.

On Saturday, Artur Vanetsyan, the leader of a small center-right party who formerly headed the national security service, was arrested on suspicion of plotting to assassinate Pashinian. He was released from custody Sunday and it was unclear if the charges against him would stand.

The agreement also dismayed many Armenians who had hoped for Russian support in the conflict. Russia and Armenia are part of a defense alliance and Russia has a large military base in Armenia.

“Our nation has lost everything, our heritage, everything. We have nothing left. I can’t say anything. I’m only begging Russian people to help us, so that at least others can have a better life in our own land," said Seda Gabrilyan, a weeping mourner at the Sunday burial of a Nagorno-Karabakh soldier in Stepanakert, the regional capital.

———

Aida Sultanova in London, Avet Demourian in Yerevan, Armenia, and Kostya Manenkov in Stepanakert, contributed to this report.

 

night driver

ESFP adrift in INTJ sea
Lynx: So, What Happened with Azerbaijan and Armenia?


CDR Salamander comments as of this morning:

Monday, November 16, 2020
So, What Happened with Azerbaijan and Armenia?



Some of you are keeping an eye on the latest Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, so if I may, let me put down a few markers here:

1. The Caucasuss have never been in the American sphere of influence.
2. The Caucasuss are not even tangentially adjacent to American national security concerns.

With that set up, here's the summary from Anders Åslund at The Atlantic Council;

The big lesson of the Azerbaijan-Armenia peace settlement is that military power rules. In a matter of weeks, the use of force has achieved what decades of diplomacy failed to deliver. The only two relevant international players in the South Caucasus region are Russia and Turkey. The United States has taken leave, while the European Union is a paper tiger without troops.

Essentially, Azerbaijan has retaken the territories it lost in 1994, and it has captured a corner of Nagorno-Karabakh. In addition, the agreement promises Azerbaijan a transportation link through Armenia to the Azerbaijani district of Nakhichevan, which lies beyond southern Armenia. In territorial terms, this settlement makes sense and may prove durable.

OK.

Noted.

This area has, for centuries, been a concern of Turkey and Russia. It still is. There is a little religious conflict thrown in for good measure. Things could have gone in a much worse direction - with a noted concern that for inertia reasons we are still allied with Turkey;

Putin has promised to deploy a peacekeeping contingent of “1,960 soldiers with small arms, 90 armored personnel carriers, and 380 vehicles and other special equipment,” which will serve along the contact line in Nagorno-Karabakh and guard the Lachin Corridor for an initial period of five years. Meanwhile, the Armenian armed forces will withdraw.

Russian special forces, many of whom fought in eastern Ukraine, began arriving in Armenia in IL-76 transportation planes on November 10. By sending these special forces as peacekeepers to Nagorno-Karabakh, Putin has made tiny Armenia even more dependent on Russia, leaving it looking less like an independent nation and increasingly like a Russian protectorate.

War over? Good. For now, no American killed. Good. Turkey was not pulled in. OK.

Wait ... of course;
The United States seems to have withdrawn from global affairs; the EU has no military muscle; and the West in general has grown alienated from Turkey. This has left the way open for authoritarian rulers like Putin and Erdogan to seize the geopolitical initiative.
What does the author want, the USA sticking its nose right in the underbelly of Russia where we have never had a national interest ... ever? Is there any shock that the EU is militarily two steps of useless without American enabling forces, logistics, and more importantly - will?
In geopolitical terms, the most important outcome of the conflict is the appearance of a significant Russian military presence in Nagorno-Karabakh. Russian “peacekeeping” missions already exist in three other “frozen” post-Soviet conflicts. They are present in Moldova’s Transnistria region, along with Abkhazia and South Ossetia in Georgia. A similar Russian military force is now firmly established in the heart of the Southern Caucasus region, fulfilling one of Moscow’s long-term objectives in the region.
Maybe I'm just not sophisticated enough with my land grant university education to see the critical nuance involved with such strange adventures some see for the USA in the Caucasus, were if we did, in additional to more American families hanging gold-star flags in their living rooms, the usual suspects in Europe and elsewhere will tut-tut, micro-manage, moral-posture, and get their large papermache puppets ready for another anti-American protest.

Anyone up for another decades long garrisoning of a god forsaken part of the world? We just had a group of Americans killed as part of the Sinai peacekeeping force. That I can argue is a net good ... but the AZ-AR conflict - for decades?

No.

If we had, in then end it would just be more American treasure expended so people far away from the fight will feel important, more untold billions of dollars burned for nothing, and no one - literally no one - will thank us for the efforts.

No thanks. We've played this game enough.

The.

Caucasus.

You and your Swedish countrymen first Anders.

After you.

There is a huge problem in our think-tank and academic natsec nomenklatura that needs to be fought every time it comes up. These people are addicted to buying virtue with the blood of other people's children.

What seems like a secondary front from some think tank conference room comfortably on the other side of the planet where a few well placed virtue-forces can make all look well and easily taken care of, may to other people be an absolutely strategically important near abroad that their ancestors fought and died for over centuries to secure, and is well worth another bloodletting.

Other people get a vote on the global value of your chasing virtue unicorns.

Your little police action to help enforce artificial lines on a map could easily become a nightmare of slaughter.

I don't know know many examples history needs to give us where emotion-based national security idealism begat brutal wholescale butchery - but it is clear not enough for some.

There are things worth traveling the world to fight against - genocidal empires focused on world conquest is one, expansionist powers looking to force their will on others through control of economics and trade is another - but those are rare.

A religious and tribal feud between Azerbaijan and Armenia manifesting itself over a bunch of goat-encrusted hills is not even a 4th tier concern of the United States.

at 11:18
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Labels: Armenia, Azerbeijan, Europe, Russia, Turkey
 

Plain Jane

Just Plain Jane

Russian Karabakh And Other Consequences Of Armenian-Azerbaijani War
Profile picture for user Tyler Durden
by Tyler Durden
Tue, 11/17/2020 - 02:00
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Submitted by South Front,
Results of the Nagorno-Karabakh war continue shaping the balance of power of the South Caucasus. The ceasefire regime established as a result of the Russian diplomatic intervention and the deployment of the Russian peacekeeping force in the region nears the end of its first week.

As the outcome of the war, Azerbaijan achieved an important victory over Armenian forces and seized the symbolic Armenian stronghold of Shusha. Baku and Yerevan also reached an agreement that is set to allow Azerbaijan to return districts lost during the first Karabakh war excluding the Lachin corridor as well as finally establish a transport link between Azerbaijan’s mainland and the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic, a landlocked Azerbaijani exclave bordering Armenia, Turkey and Iran.

The latest development is in fact even more important for Azerbaijani national interests than any propaganda achievements in the war with the Armenians. This will not only allow to finally establish a ground link between the main territory Azerbaijan and the country’s autonomous region, but also strengthen economic and cultural cooperation with Turkey, a traditional Azerbaijani ally. Ankara, together with Israeli weapon suppliers, played an important role in the Azerbaijani victory through providing its forces with weapons, ammunition, intelligence and military advisers and specialists that helped to plan and turn into reality the Karabakh advance.

For years, Turkey has been employing the “two states, one nation” concept in its relations with Azerbaijan as a part of the wider claim to be the formal, military and spiritual leader of the so-called Turkic world and the Muslims in the Greater Middle East and Central Asia in general. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who sees himself as the Sultan of the New Neo-Ottoman Empire, does not hide Turkish plans to annex territories of northern Syria and northern Iraq, where Ankara already has a permanent military presence. Azerbaijan is seen by Erdogan and his circle as a logical and important part of this Greater Turkey project with a particular autonomy. Therefore, the Turkish military presence in Azerbaijan and the further expansion of the economic, political and cultural links between the countries is a logical step in this plan. During the past years, Ankara has repeatedly announced the plans to build a new railway road to Nakhchivan. Now, the preparations for the implementation of this project will likely reach their finishing straight.

At the same time, there are some factors often ignored by pro-Turkish analysts boasting about the great Neo-Ottoman victory in Karabakh. First of all, the control over the so desired by Turkey ground link with Azerbaijan will be in the hands of the Russians under the Moscow-brokered deal between Baku and Yerevan. The control over the transport link between Nakhchivan and the Azerbaijani mainland will be exercised by the Border Service of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB). At the same time, the Russian peacekeeping force will also control the corridor between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia, and a large part of the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, including the largest regional city Stepanakert.

Russian forces supported by combat helicopters, electronic warfare systems, BTR-80A armoured personnel carriers and various armoured vehicles of other types already established 25 observation points (18 permanent and 7 temporary) in the region. One of the posts is in fact located at the gates of Shusha. Additionally to the 1960-strong contingent in Karabakh, the Russian military also created a gathering center, in other words a temporary military base, in the Armenian city of Goris, near the border. Battle tanks and multiple rocket launching systems spotted in the area indicate that the operation there involves additional means and forces. Moscow is also creating a special humanitarian center for Karabakh. The center will be controlled by Russia and overseen by the FSB thus cutting off the possibility of looting of humanitarian aid for the region.

Taking into account the deep crisis of the current pro-Western Armenian government, led by Nikol Pashinyan who is still hiding in some basement in Yerevan, the control over Nagorno-Karabakh territories, which should not been returned to Azerbaijan as the part of the November 10 deal, has been in fact transferred to Russia.

Now, Russia has officially established a military presence on the sovereign territory of Azerbaijan for the next 5 years. This term also can be prolonged under the existing deal. This unprecedented development for the modern South Caucasus caused little happiness in Ankara causing the Turkish attempt to promote the idea of the deployment of some ‘Turkish peacekeepers’ to the combat zone. However, all what it achieved was the draft plan for the creation of a joint Russian-Turkish ceasefire monitoring center on the territory of Azerbaijan.

According to the Russian foreign minister, the center will be located in the part of the territory that is not close to Karabakh and no field missions are planned. The posture of Azerbaijan, which did not support the Turkish field deployment in Karabakh, in this unfortunate situation for Ankara became an unpleasant surprise for Turkish commentators.

Furthermore, Baku demonstrated an unexpected softness by shifting the schedule of the Armenian withdrawal from the contested region. Under the initial deal, the Kalbajar district was set to be transferred to Azerbaijan by November 15, a top aide to Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev announced that the deadline was extended till November 25. These steps show the readiness of the Azerbaijani side for the constructive actions in the framework of the existing Yerevan-Moscow-Baku format.


Summing up, it seems that Mr. Aliyev is not going to pay back by turning Azerbaijan into the province of Erdogan’s Neo-Ottoman Empire. In this case, the closer cooperation with Russia, which is also an important economic and security partner of Azerbaijan, is an apparent solution.
 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Armenia: Tens of thousands rally to demand PM's resignation
Tens of thousands of opposition supporters have marched across Armenia's capital to push for the resignation of the nation’s prime minister over his handling of the conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh
By AVET DEMOURIAN Associated Press
5 December 2020, 12:44

Opposition demonstrators rally to pressure Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to resign over a peace deal with neighboring Azerbaijan in Republic Square in Yerevan, Armenia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. Tens of thousands of opposition supporters marc

Image Icon
The Associated Press
Opposition demonstrators rally to pressure Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to resign over a peace deal with neighboring Azerbaijan in Republic Square in Yerevan, Armenia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. Tens of thousands of opposition supporters marched across the Armenian capital Saturday to push for the resignation of the ex-Soviet nation's prime minister over his handling of the conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh. (Hrant Khachatryan /PAN Photo via AP)

YEREVAN, Armenia -- Tens of thousands of opposition supporters marched across the Armenian capital Saturday to push for the resignation of the ex-Soviet nation's prime minister over his handling of the conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh.

In six weeks of fierce fighting that ended with a Russia-brokered peace deal on Nov. 10, the Azerbaijani army reclaimed lands that Armenian forces have held for more than a quarter-century.

Armenia's opposition parties warned Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan there would be civil disobedience across the country if he does not resign by noon on Tuesday
. Pashinyan has refused to step down, defending the peace agreement as a painful but necessary move that prevented Azerbaijan from overrunning the entire Nagorno-Karabakh region.

More than 20,000 protesters rallied in Yerevan on Saturday, chanting “Nikol, you traitor!” and “Nikol, go away!” and then marched to the prime minister's official residence.

“The seat of the prime minister of Armenia is currently being occupied by a political corpse,” Artur Vanetsyan, the leader of the opposition party Homeland and the former head of the National Security Service, said at the protest rally.

Several priests of the Armenian Apostolic Church joined the protest, denouncing Pashinyan for allowing Azerbaijan to take over some holy sites.

Nagorno-Karabakh lies within Azerbaijan but has been under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since a separatist war there ended in 1994. That conflict left not only Nagorno-Karabakh itself but large chunks of surrounding lands in Armenian hands.

In 44 days of fighting that began on Sept. 27, Azerbaijan troops routed the Armenian forces and wedged deep into Nagorno-Karabakh, forcing Armenia to accept the Nov. 10 peace deal that saw the return to Azerbaijan of a significant part of the separatist region. It also obliged Armenia to hand over all of the areas it held outside Nagorno-Karabakh.

Azerbaijan completed reclaiming those territories on Tuesday when it took over the Lachin region located between the Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia. Azerbaijan celebrated the end of fighting as a national triumph, and President Ilham Aliyev established a new Nov. 8 national holiday called Victory Day to commemorate the event.

Armenian opposition leaders hold Pashinyan responsible for failing to negotiate an earlier end to the hostilities at terms that could have been more beneficial for Armenia. They have emphasized, however, that the opposition wasn’t pushing for the annulment of the peace deal.

Veteran politician Vazgen Manukyan, whom 17 opposition parties have nominated as their candidate for prime minister, said at Saturday’s rally that his transition government would seek to renegotiate some vague aspects of the Nov. 10 peace deal.

Manukyan, 71, served as prime minister in 1990-91, when Armenia was part of the Soviet Union and later served as defense minister during the separatist war

Azerbaijan on Thursday released information on its military casualties from the latest fighting. The Defense Ministry said 2,783 troops were killed and more than 100 were still missing. The government said 94 of its civilians also were killed and more than 400 were wounded.

Armenia’s Health Ministry said Wednesday that at least 2,718 Armenian servicemen were killed in the fighting. At least 55 Armenian civilians also were killed.

Russia deployed nearly 2,000 peacekeepers for at least five years to monitor the peace deal and to facilitate the return of refugees. The Russian troops will also ensure safe transit between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia across the Lachin region.

———

Associated Press writers Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow and Aida Sultanova in London contributed to this report.

Armenia: Tens of thousands rally to demand PM's resignation - ABC News (go.com)
 

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Azerbaijan holds parade after Nagorno-Karabakh fighting
A military parade has been held in the Azerbaijani capital in celebration of a peace deal with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the separatist region along with surrounding areas
By The Associated Press
10 December 2020, 08:19


Azerbaijani troops march past during a parade in Baku, Azerbaijan, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. A military parade has been held in the Azerbaijani capital in celebration of a peace deal with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much

Image Icon
The Associated Press
Azerbaijani troops march past during a parade in Baku, Azerbaijan, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. A military parade has been held in the Azerbaijani capital in celebration of a peace deal with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the separatist region along with surrounding areas. (AP Photo)

BAKU, Azerbaijan -- More than 3,000 troops took part in a military parade in Azerbaijan on Thursday to celebrate reclaiming control over broad swathes of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding lands in a conflict with Armenia.

The parade attended by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who strongly backed Azerbaijan, also involved dozens of military vehicles, and a flyby of combat aircraft. The display, which also featured a Turkish commando brigade and Turkish drones, was held a month after a Russia-brokered deal ended six weeks of fierce fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev showered Turkey with praise, hailing its support for the ex-Soviet Caspian Sea nation as "an example of our unity, our brotherhood.”

Nagorno-Karabakh lies within Azerbaijan but was under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since a separatist war there ended in 1994. That war left Nagorno-Karabakh itself and substantial surrounding territory in Armenian hands.

In 44 days of fighting that began in late September and left more than 5,600 people killed on both sides, the Azerbaijani army pushed deep into Nagorno-Karabakh, forcing Armenia to accept a Russia-brokered peace deal that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the separatist region along with surrounding areas.

In his speech, Erdogan reiterated Turkey’s continued support to Azerbaijan, saying that “as long as Turkey and Azerbaijan work hand in glove, they will continue to overcome all difficulties and run from one success to the next.”

Erdogan voiced hope that Armenia would “take lessons” from its defeat and noted that Turkey was ready to reopen the border with Armenia if it takes unspecified “positive steps.”

Turkey and Azerbaijan have shut their borders with Armenia ever since the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict erupted, a blockade that has weakened the economy of the landlocked country.

“As long as positive steps are taken, we would open our gates, which were closed," Erdogan said. "It’s not that we want to keep our doors closed to Armenia ... we have no enmity with the people of Armenia. Our problem is with the Armenian leadership.”

The November 10 peace deal became a major trauma for Armenians, triggering a month of protests calling for the resignation of the country's prime minister, Nikola Pashinyan. Pashinyan has refused to step down, describing the peace agreement as a bitter but necessary move that prevented Azerbaijan from taking over the entire Nagorno-Karabakh.

As Aliyev and Erdogan watched the parade in Baku, several thousand people in Armenia's capital demonstrated in front of the government building to push the demand for Pashinyan to resign. Protesters tried to enter the building but were pushed back by police who arrested scores.

———

Associated Press writers Suzan Fraser in Ankara, Turkey, Avet Demourian in Yerevan, Armenia, and Daria Litvinova and Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow, contributed to this report.

Azerbaijan holds parade after Nagorno-Karabakh fighting - ABC News
 

Old Gray Mare

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Fair use.
Armenians Storm Capital Demanding PM Resign After Azerbaijan Victory Parade
BEN KEW 11 Dec 2020
Anti-government demonstrations once again took place in Armenia’s capital, Yerevan, on Friday demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan after Azerbaijan held a victory parade to celebrate its seizure of the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region.

While Nagorno-Karabakh is technically part of Azerbaijan, the vast majority of its population is ethnically Armenian and Baku and had not exercised control of the region since the fall of the Soviet Union. Local Armenian separatists had governed it, calling it the “Republic of Artsakh,” prior to the conflict beginning in September that ended last month with a Russia-brokered peace deal.

Demonstrators chanted slogans such as “Armenia without Nikol” and “Nikol must go” as they filled the streets of Yerevan on Friday, even after Pashinyan admitted he was “ready to discuss” the possibility of calling early parliamentary elections.

“The authorities are ready to start such discussions on the condition, as the prime minister noted, that no party threatens others,” Deputy Parliamentary Speaker Alen Simonian told reporters on Thursday.

Demonstrations have taken place on an almost daily basis over the past two weeks after Pashinyan, who came to power in 2018 following similar social unrest, ignored their demand for his resignation by midday Tuesday. Protesters have tried various methods of disruption, including blocking the streets and storming the country’s parliament building.

Among those calling for Pashinyan’s resignation are the Armenian Apostolic Church and three of the country’s former presidents. Addressing MP’s in parliament this week, he spoke of the need for political stability and warned that “voices of different groups mustn’t be mistaken for the people’s voice.”

Opposition to Pashinyan is the result of his decision to sign a ceasefire agreement to end the Nagorno-Karabakh war, which left more than 5,600 deaths on both sides. Under the agreement, Azerbaijan will keep a large chunk of the Nagorno-Karabakh region and its surrounding areas that belonged to Armenia, much to the dismay of the Armenian people.

On signing the deal, Pashinyan admitted that it was “incredibly painful both for me and both for our people.” He added that he agreed to sign after “deep analyses of the combat situation and in discussion with best experts of the field” as Azerbaijani forces made major battlefield gains, including the key strategic town of Shushi.

Protests on Friday took place after Azerbaijan held a victory parade in the capital Baku on Thursday to celebrate the outcome. The ceremony was attended by Turkish President Recep Erdogan, who strongly backed the Azeris during the conflict.

“From the first hours of the war, we felt the support of Turkey,” Azeri President Ilham Aliyev said in his victory speech. “This is an example of our unity, our brotherhood.”

Erdogan used his speech to blame Armenia for the conflict and expressed hope the country would “take lessons” from their defeat.

“We hope that Armenian leaders will assess this carefully and take courageous steps to build a future based on peace and stability,” Erdogan declared. “As long as Turkey and Azerbaijan work hand in glove, they will continue to overcome all difficulties and run from one success to the next.”

Follow Ben Kew on Parler, Facebook, or Twitter. You can email him at bkew@breitbart.com.

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Armenian officials report new clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh
Armenian officials are accusing Azerbaijan of breaching a peace deal that ended six weeks of fierce fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh

By AVET DEMOURIAN Associated Press
12 December 2020, 07:34

Azerbaijani troops attend the parade in Baku, Azerbaijan, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. A military parade has been held in the Azerbaijani capital in celebration of a peace deal with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the se

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The Associated Press
Azerbaijani troops attend the parade in Baku, Azerbaijan, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. A military parade has been held in the Azerbaijani capital in celebration of a peace deal with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the separatist region along with surrounding areas. (AP Photo/Aziz Karimov)

YEREVAN, Armenia -- Armenian officials on Saturday accused Azerbaijan of breaching a peace deal that ended six weeks of fierce fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh.

Separatist officials in Nagorno-Karabakh said the Azerbaijani military launched an attack late Friday that left three local ethnic Armenian servicemen wounded.


Russian peacekeepers deployed to the region to monitor the peace deal reported a violation of the cease-fire in the Gadrut region on Friday. The report issued Saturday by the Russian Defense Ministry didn't assign blame.

Later in the day, the Armenian Defense Ministry also charged that the Azerbaijani army mounted an attack in the south of Nagorno-Karabakh on Saturday.

Azerbaijani authorities had no immediate comment to the Armenian statements claiming the first significant breaches of the peace deal brokered by Russia on Nov. 10 that saw Azerbaijan reclaim control over broad swathes of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding lands which were held by Armenian forces for more than a quarter century.

Nagorno-Karabakh lies within Azerbaijan but was under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since a separatist war there ended in 1994. That war left Nagorno-Karabakh itself and substantial surrounding territory in Armenian hands.

In 44 days of fighting that began in late September and left more than 5,600 people killed on both sides, the Azerbaijani army pushed deep into Nagorno-Karabakh, forcing Armenia to accept last month's peace deal that saw Azerbaijan reclaim much of the separatist region along with surrounding areas.

Azerbaijan marked its victory with a military parade on Thursday that was attended by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and involved more than 3,000 troops, dozens of military vehicles, and a flyby of combat aircraft.

The peace deal was a major shock for Armenians, triggering protests calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Nikola Pashinyan, who has refused to step down. He described the peace agreement as a bitter but necessary move that prevented Azerbaijan from taking over all of Nagorno-Karabakh.

———


Associated Press writer Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow contributed to this report.

Armenian officials report new clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh - ABC News
 

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Putin Exercises Free Hand in South Caucasus
Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 18 Issue: 8
By: Pavel Felgenhauer

January 14, 2021 09:14 PM Age: 1 day

Armenian-railroad-EDM-January-14-2021.jpg

Armenian-railroad-EDM-January-14-2021-640x480.jpg

(Source: freenews.am)

Over the past several weeks, the United States has been preoccupied with the ongoing transition of power in the White House, a riot in the Capitol and a second impeachment of outgoing President Donald Trump (see EDM, January 7, 2021). As a result, Washington’s focus has lately not included much in the way of foreign affairs. And many in Moscow are jubilant about this fact. Maria Butina (32), arrested and convicted in 2018 of acting as an unregistered foreign agent of the Russian Federation in the US, was released in October 2019 and deported back to Russia, where she received a hero’s welcome. Since arriving on her home soil, Butina rebranded herself as an expert on Trump’s America and became a member of the Russian Federation Civic Chamber (a state-created civil society consultative organization preoccupied with evaluating draft legislation and monitoring government institutions). At a January 13 press conference in Moscow, organized by news organizations connected to the notorious “Kremlin cook” Yevgeny Prigozhin, Butina, together with other Russian experts, implied that after the Capitol attack, a civil war of sorts is brewing in the United States, with armed fighting likely to break out soon. According to the repatriated female spy, the US ruling elite may lose control of the situation, and the polarization of society is so acute that any possible violence “would be terrible.” In such a situation, Butina crowed, Russia would thrive as a bastion of stability and traditional values in the world, while other nations would seek Russian friendship and support (Riafan.ru, January 13, 2021).

On January 11, President Vladimir Putin seemingly had a taste of what Russia’s diplomatic room for maneuver might look like if the US loses sight of (or lacks the will to become involved in) developments abroad—particularly in regions Russia considers its “sphere of privileged interest.” At the Kremlin, Putin hosted the first postwar face-to-face meeting between the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and President Ilham Aliyev, respectively (see EDM, January 12, 2021). The Second Karabakh War, which began on September 27, 2020, concluded on November 9 with Armenia soundly defeated. In the conflict’s closing days, Putin helped mediate the permanent ceasefire that returned to Azerbaijan the territories surrounding Upper (“Nagorno”) Karabakh that the Armenians had occupied since the First Karabakh War in the 1990s. Additionally, the trilateral agreement granted Baku up to 40 percent of the predominantly Armenian-populated and Yerevan-backed, Soviet-era Nagorno-Karabakh autonomy, which had declared independence as the “Nagorno-Karabakh Republic” (NKR—called “Artsakh” by the Armenian side) three decades go. Russia deployed some 2,000 peacekeepers into Upper Karabakh. Their patrols and outposts surround the rump NKR, which is still under Armenian control. The NKR today retains a de facto government, parliament, army, police and judiciary system, but it is not recognized internationally or by the government in Baku. At the Moscow summit, Pashinian wanted to discuss the release of Armenian prisoners in Azerbaijani custody as well as the post-war status of rump NKR, but both Putin and Aliyev refused. Instead, the three leaders pledged to create a joint Russo-Armenian-Azerbaijani commission to prepare the opening of regional transport corridors in the South Caucasus that have been closed since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 (TASS, January 11, 2021; see EDM, January 12, 2021).

Defeated Armenia is now effectively a Russian protectorate, with Russian peacekeepers preserving the “Armenian” nature of the rump NKR (see EDM, November 13, December 8, 10, 2020). These units are reinforced by other Russian troops deployed in Armenia proper, together with Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) border guards and additional Russian forces stationed in the North Caucasus, along the northern borders of Azerbaijan—all apparently preventing a total Armenian defeat and domination by the dreaded “Turks.” As a de facto dependency, Armenia must obey.

However, victorious postwar Azerbaijan also needs Russia as a guarantee of stability while Baku is fully engaged in the costly and time-consuming process of developing, repopulating and reintegrating reclaimed territories in the Karabakh region. Azerbaijan is closely allied with Turkey, and recognizing this fact, Moscow is attempting to balance Ankara’s influence by consenting to President Aliyev’s wishes to reopen a Soviet-era railroad from Dagestan through Baku to the Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan, progressing north of the Aras River, with tracks eventually leading to Yerevan. This railroad also connects with a route from Nakhchivan all the way to Tabriz, in northern Iran. Meanwhile, Turkey wants to build an additional rail connection to Nakhchivan, linking the system to its own domestic rail network. When this entire (for now partially mothballed) regional rail network is up and running, it will directly connect Armenia, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Russia and Iran. But in line with the text of the November 9 agreement, Russian FSB border guards will oversee this rail traffic passing between Turkey, Azerbaijan and Armenia (Kommersant, January 13, 2021).

Moscow obviously cannot hope, like in Soviet or Tsarist times, to reintegrate the entire South Caucasus as its undisputed dominion and to keep the West out without support from regional powers. However, the above-described rail corridor project could create not only a regional transport but also a political network that Russia could try to dominate (Kommersant, January 13, 2021). Putin has briefed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan about the recent Moscow summit and also spoke to French President Emmanuel Macron. France is the third co-chair of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s (OSCE) Minsk Group on resolving the Karabakh conflict, together with Russia and the US. Yet conspicuously, Putin did not try to phone Washington. In the Kremlin’s ideal world, Moscow is free to coerce or entice smaller states into submission without constant prodding and pushback from Washington. Hence, Russian state propaganda—especially the Rossiya 1 TV channel—continues to aggressively root for Trump despite the fact that he is only days away from leaving the White House, likely permanently. Rossiya 1’s flagship news program, Vesti, continuously laments the outgoing US president’s downfall, mocks President-elect Joseph Biden, and reports that the National Guard soldiers deployed in DC for next week’s (January 20) inauguration, may purportedly turn their weapons against the authorities and join pro-Trump protestors (Vesti, January 13, 2021).

Trump and Putin may have shared mutual sympathies in one way or another over the past four years, but that relationship never resulted in any significant bilateral deals that Moscow wanted. Yet in Moscow’s eyes, Trump has retained the ability to create mayhem in the US. Apparently for the Kremlin public relations machine, that power outweighs any need to try build fresh bridges with the incoming US administration.

Putin Exercises Free Hand in South Caucasus - Jamestown
 

northern watch

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Protesters revive demands for Armenian government to resign
Thousands of protesters calling for the resignation of Armenia’s prime minister and his government gathered in the center of the country’s capital for the first time since winter weather put their movement on hold

By The Associated Press
20 February 2021, 13:07

YEREVAN, Armenia -- Thousands of protesters calling for the resignation of Armenia’s prime minister and his government gathered in the center of the country’s capital on Saturday.

The protesters met on Freedom Square and marched off in several directions, shutting down traffic in central Yerevan. They then , then reconvened on Republic Square outside the government headquarters
.

Several rows of police blocked off the government building. There were no immediate reports of clashes.

The demonstration revives a wave of protests against Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan that arose in November after he signed a ceasefire with Azerbaijan that ceded territory occupied by Armenian forces. The deal ended a six-week war over the separatist Nagorno-Karabakhin territory in which thousands died.

The anti-government protests in Armenia had gone dormant in the depth of winter. Demonstrators voiced objections Saturday not only to the cease-fire agreement, but cited deteriorating economic conditions and corruption in the country.

Protesters revive demands for Armenian government to resign - ABC News
 

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Turkey tries to squeeze Russia and Iran out of the South Caucasus

Opinions
The day before yesterday, 3:45 p.m. February 24 2021

Ruben Safrastian Through the geopolitical process generated by Ankara with the participation of Georgia and Azerbaijan, Turkey is trying to create and lead an alliance against Armenia and Russia in the South Caucasus. The scientific director of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia, academician Ruben Safrastyan, told About it. "Ankara is trying to create an important geopolitical axis for itself.

This process began at the initiative of Suleiman Demirel, but it got real outlines only after the war 08.08.08. It was the Russo-Georgian war that allowed Ankara to intensify it. By involving Georgia and Azerbaijan in its own orbit and increasing its influence in the South Caucasus, Turkey is trying to weaken Russia in the region. And, of course, to further isolate Armenia," the expert says. Commenting on Iran's role and place in Turkish geopolitical projects, the academic noted that Tehran and Ankara have both common interests and opportunities for mutual influence and pressure.

Turks to this end engage Turkic-speaking Azerbaijanis living in the northern provinces of Iran, actively spreading the ideology of pan-Turkism there. This is met with active opposition from Tehran, which in turn uses the Kurdish factor against the Turks.

Safrastyan characterizes the current situation in Turkish-Iranian relations as a continuing balance and mutual willingness to compromise in times of threat of imbalance. And he attributes the same Iranian passivity to Turkish activity during the 44-day war to Ankara's refusal to join U.S. sanctions against Iran. At the same time, if the new U.S. administration softens its policy on Iran, relations with Turkey, according to its forecasts, will enter the stage of uncertainty. Thus, despite Ankara's accounting of the Iran factor in the region, Tehran is well aware of the dangers of Turkey's pan-Turkist programs. This is particularly evident against the background of the efforts made by the Turks to maximize the small advantage they have gained from the recent bloodshed in Nagorno-Karabakh. "Yes, today the Turks are really offering Iran participation in the "platform of peace and cooperation in the region." Here I would like to recall how in 2008 Turkey offered to participate in a similar platform of Russia, the United States and three countries of the South Caucasus. However, the United States was subsequently effectively forced out of the region with the active participation of Turkey. And today Ankara is trying to do the same with Russia and Iran," the academic concluded.

The author's opinion may not be the same as that of the editorial board.

Источник: Турция пытается выдавить с Южного Кавказа Россию и Иран
© capost.media
 
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Moscow Expanding Ties With Iran to Counter Growing Turkish Influence Around Caspian

Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 18 Issue: 32
By: Paul Goble

February 25, 2021 05:37 PM Age: 1 day

Moscow is alarmed by the expansion of Turkish influence in the Caspian region, most immediately by Turkey’s enthusiasm for trans-Caspian natural gas pipelines, something that could undercut Russia’s ability to dominate that market. In response, Russia has expanded its own naval activities in the Caspian to signal that it remains a force to be reckoned with there because it could interrupt such flows by force (TRT Russian, February 23; KavkazGeoClub, February 16).

These Russian actions have, in turn, been concerning to Azerbaijan, the chief beneficiary of the expansion of Turkish influence in the Caspian region and a proponent of further trans-Caspian transit links with Central Asian countries. In response, Baku has directed its own naval force to prepare to defend pipelines and other energy infrastructure in the Caspian Sea from attack either by other countries or by non-state terrorists. Such preparations do not mean that any attacks are imminent, but they have their own dynamic, especially given that the Azerbaijani government has chosen to discuss them so publicly (Report.az, February 11; Kaspiyskiy Vestnik, February 18).

But Moscow has not limited its actions in the Caspian to its own forces. In recent weeks, it has held two exercises with Iranian ships in the central and southern portions of that sea, where most of the hydrocarbon fields and energy infrastructure between Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan exist. It has been able to do so because Tehran is at least as worried about the implications of growing Turkish influence in the region as Moscow is (Caucasus Post, February 24; see EDM, February 18).

Iran does not have a significant fleet in the Caspian Sea or more generally—as measured by the number of ships, their size and their armaments. But earlier this month, Alireza Tangisiri, the commander of the naval forces of the Islamic Republic’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, announced that Tehran has begun building larger and more heavily armed vessels, which will help make Iran a true naval power (Vzglyad, February 12). Most Russian analysts have dismissed this as Iranian braggadocio, but they have nonetheless suggested that Moscow could benefit from such a development. In the Persian Gulf, a larger Iranian presence would reduce the burden on the Russian navy to counter the United States fleet; and in the Caspian, a larger Iranian force could limit the spread of Turkish influence and provide protection to the north-south trade route that Russia and Iran both favor. As a result, some in Moscow are now asking what Russian shipbuilding industry could do to help Tehran (Vzglyad, February 20), despite the fact that Russia’s own shipyards are deeply troubled (Nezavisimaya Gazeta, December 17 2020).

In a new Vzglyad commentary, Moscow security analyst Aleksandr Timokhin writes that, from many points of view, the current moment seems propitious for such cooperation. Moscow could provide Iran not only with important components for its navy but also, if Tehran were interested, with finished ships. Iran has already purchased three Russian-produced submarines and, thus, has experience with Russian yards and equipment (Vzglyad, February 20). He focuses on the advantages that a larger Iranian navy would give Russia in the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean, allowing Moscow to “delegate” to the Iranians part of the task of containing the US that, “crudely speaking,” the Russian navy does not have sufficient strength to do on its own. But it seems clear that the Russian analyst is also interested in seeing Iran develop its naval presence, albeit within limits, northward. Moscow would like the Iranian fleet there to be strong enough to help Russia contain Turkey but not so strong as to be in a position to promote Tehran’s plans for an expanded Iranian empire including “Armenia, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and other” lands to its north.

That is not the only factor limiting the expansion of such cooperation, Timokhin contends. Iran wants to develop its own shipbuilding industry rather than being forced to rely on Russia, especially given that Tehran remembers well that in the 1990s, Moscow, under pressure from the West, stopped supplying the Iranian navy. At least some Iranians fear that this could happen again, and they do not want to put themselves at risk. But at the same time, other Iranians, aware of the limitations of their national yards, are interested in speaking with the Russians or even the Chinese—and their conversations with Beijing in this regard may be another reason for Moscow to seek to promote its own services. According to Timokhin, the possibilities of a massive Russian assistance program for the development of the Iranian navy are thus quite limited, although some moves in that direction may be possible. If worries about Turkey over Caspian routes or east-west tensions intensify, Moscow is likely to try to secure Tehran’s agreement for a tighter relationship than it now wants.

One sign Moscow may be moving in that direction is the revival of talk about an even more gigantic project involving Russia and Iran: the possible construction of a 7,200-kilometer-long canal across Iran that would carry cargo and allow for the movement of ships between the Caspian and the Persian Gulf. Conversations among Russians, Iranians and Indians about such a project have been on-again, off-again throughout the last five years (Vzglyad, April 8, 2016 and Kavkaz Uzel, November 1, 2018); but now, some observers suggest these discussions may take off, which could benefit Russia and Iran in two important ways (Kavkaz Uzel, February 16).

On the one hand, such a canal would be a boon to north-south trade and undercut Turkey’s east-west projects. And on the other hand, it would allow Iran’s navy to move ships from the Persian Gulf to the Caspian in the event of need, just as Russia has moved ships from the Caspian to the Sea of Azov to pressure Ukraine (see EDM, May 31, 2018 and November 27, 2018). But even if neither of these Russian projects bear fruit, they highlight the fact that Moscow’s contest with Turkey in the Caucasus not only involves Iran but has gone to sea, adding a new dimension to this geopolitical competition.

Moscow Expanding Ties With Iran to Counter Growing Turkish Influence Around Caspian - Jamestown
 

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Armenia's president refuses order to dismiss military chief
Pressure on Armenia's prime minister has intensified after the country’s president rejected his order to dismiss the chief of the military general staff
By The Associated Press
27 February 2021, 12:25


Opposition demonstrators march to the government buildings during a rally to pressure Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to resign in Yerevan, Armenia, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. The developments come after months of protests sparked by the nation

Image Icon
The Associated Press
Opposition demonstrators march to the government buildings during a rally to pressure Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to resign in Yerevan, Armenia, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. The developments come after months of protests sparked by the nation's defeat in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with Azerbaijan. (Hrant Khachatryan/PAN Photo via AP)

YEREVAN, Armenia -- About 15,000 protesters calling for the resignation of Armenia’s prime minister marched through the capital Saturday as pressure on the leader intensified after the country's president rejected his order to dismiss the chief of the military general staff.

Protests against Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan arose in November after he signed a cease-fire ending a six-week war with Azerbaijan over the separatist territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. The agreement saw Armenia lose control of territories in Azerbaijan it had held for more than 25 years.

Top military officers this week joined in demanding Pashinyan’s resignation, a move that he called an attempted coup. He ordered the dismissal of the chief of the general staff, but the order was subject to approval by Armenia's largely ceremonial president.

President Armen Sarkissian sent the order back to Pashinyan on Saturday, saying he could not give approval because he considered parts of the decree to be in violation of the constitution. It was not immediately clear if Pashinyan would try to revise the order.

At the protest rally, opposition politician Naira Zograbyan, who once was a journalist at a newspaper owned by Pashinyan, denounced the prime minister.

“This is not a military coup. This is a revolution of thought, reason, love, which will win,” she said.

The political crisis is being watched closely, particularly in Russia and Turkey, which compete for influence in the South Caucasus region.

The South Caucasus has strategic importance as a bridge between Europe and Asia and major pipelines transporting Azerbaijani oil to the West pass through the region.

Armenia's president refuses order to dismiss military chief - ABC News (go.com)
 

Sid Vicious

Veteran Member
As it turns out Soros is heavily involved in Armenia. He is supporting multiple people in their government and is funding the opposition as well. The Armenian people absolutely hate the globohomo agenda.
 

danielboon

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Neil Hauer

@NeilPHauer



Replying to
@NeilPHauer
Armenia has now officially appealed to the CSTO to act on the matter, invoking the mutual defence treaty of its members. The present situation appears to be a textbook example of an Article 4 violation. Response will be telling.
Quote Tweet


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Tatevik Hayrapetyan

@TatevikHayrape1
· 48m
Armenia

applies to the #CSTO, as, according to @NikolPashinyan the situation fully coincides with Article 2 of the #CSTO Treaty, as the #CSTO member states must activate the relevant mechanisms to express their position and take steps to eliminate the threat!
 

danielboon

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Neil Hauer

@NeilPHauer

·
56m


The silence out of Russia, Armenia's treaty ally, on the ongoing blatant territorial violation in Syunik is deafening. Official Baku also has yet to comment. Meanwhile, heavy buildup of Armenian military forces in the area continues.
 
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