Vladimir Putin and Nikol Pashinyan

Vladimir Putin and Nikol Pashinyan

Baku /01.11.22/Turan: Did the Kremlin manage to seize the initiative of the West in the settlement issue?

Many experts and analysts ask themselves this question. Judging by the modest results, this did not happen. Moscow has failed to convince Yerevan that it can do more for Armenians than the West.

Suffice it to compare Pashinyan's speech at the bilateral meeting with Putin and the final comments of the Russian President following the meetings. Putin gave no positive reply to any of the questions posed by Pashinyan:

1) The principles of the peace treaty that the Armenian side will choose, namely, the "Russian draft"of the Basic Principles for establishing Interstate Relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia."

"I hope that you will support the proposal to refer to this document in the text of today's trilateral statement on the results of our meeting," Pashinyan said.

2) withdrawal of Azerbaijani troops from the zone of responsibility of Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh (this is about the Farrukh height - ed.).

"I hope that this issue will be resolved based on the results of today's discussions," Pashinyan said.

3) creation of mechanisms to improve security on the Azerbaijani-Armenian border to begin the process of border delimitation.

Pashinyan noted that Yerevan agreed to Russia's proposal, but on September 13, Azerbaijan committed "a new large-scale aggression against Armenia and occupied new territories."

"It is very important for us to have a clear position of the Russian Federation on this issue with the wording on the necessity to withdraw Azerbaijani troops to positions as of May 11, 2021," Pashinyan said.

4) Regional communications on the territory of Armenia should be under its full control and operated according to the legislation of Armenia. The border service of the FSS of Russia should only monitor the implementation of this.

5) Release and repatriation of all Armenian citizens held in Azerbaijan.

6) keeping peacekeepers in Karabakh for 10-20 years.

The statement following the meeting results does not address any of these issues. This means that the so-called "Russian settlement option" is just a myth.

Putin's hint at the Valdai Forum that Western proposals mean recognition of Karabakh as a part of Azerbaijan did not frighten Yerevan. Pashinyan behaved quite skillfully in this situation, demanding that Moscow do more than the West expects and prove that Russia is an ally of Armenia.

It is safe to say that the points proposed by Pashinyan were in the draft of the trilateral statement, but were excluded at the insistence of Ilham Aliyev. Putin himself acknowledged this, noting that "not all issues were agreed upon." Judging by Putin's dissatisfied and tired appearance, he could not convince Aliyev to soften his position.

The meeting in Sochi was the longest of all meetings with the participation of the leaders of the three countries and the least productive.

In the near future, we should expect further activity of Yerevan in order to play the Iranian and then the American card in Karabakh as much as possible. Pashinyan's visit to Tehran today will probably be the first step on this path. -02B-

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