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Deployment of the EU monitoring mission to Armenia: A view from Azerbaijan

On January 23, the Council of the European Union (EU) agreed to establish a civilian monitoring mission in Armenia’s border areas in order to “ensure an environment conducive to normalization efforts between Armenia and Azerbaijan”. The deployment of the mission has caused mixed reactions in the two countries and frustrated Russia, writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu.

patrickn97 Thu, 01/26/2023 - 14:53
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Opinion: EU mediation between Armenia and Azerbaijan is needed now more than ever

Opinion: EU mediation between Armenia and Azerbaijan is needed now more than ever

The stalemate in the process of normalising relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan has created new risks. Writing for commonspace.eu in this op-ed, Vasif Huseynov says that "there is widespread concern in the region that the sides might end up in a violent military escalation this year if they fail to sign a peace treaty and agree on a roadmap for the resolution of the remaining disputes concerning the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan and the re-opening of regional transportation links. Under these circumstances, there is a great need for the constructive intervention and active mediation of the EU, without which Baku and Yerevan are unlikely to be able to overcome the difficulties created by the Russian side", he argues.
Opinion: Azerbaijan is intensively engaged in new projects that aim to contribute to energy security, especially in Eastern Europe
Over the last month, the diplomatic traffic between Azerbaijan and the Eastern European countries has intensified in a remarkable way. The mutual high-level visits between Albania and Azerbaijan, as well as between Serbia and Azerbaijan in a short period of time over the last few months were a sign of the sides’ interest in bilateral cooperation in various fields, particularly in the field of energy. Azerbaijan is also involved in projects with the countries of the region within multilateral formats together with the European Union (EU). In this context, two major agreements signed this year provide a good basis for this cooperation both in the imports of natural gas and importantly green energy, writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu. These developments in the relations between Azerbaijan and the Eastern European countries brings with it also geopolitical approximation between the sides. As President Aliyev stated following the signing of the electricity deal in Bucharest, Azerbaijan’s contribution to European energy security creates an important bridge between the EU and Azerbaijan. The bridge between the two shores of the Black Sea forms a larger security architecture which increase the resilience of the regional countries in the face of national security challenges they face.
dennis2020 Mon, 12/26/2022 - 10:59
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Opinion: 2022 started promising from the perspective of peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan but prospects for 2023 are bleak

Opinion: 2022 started promising from the perspective of peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan but prospects for 2023 are bleak

Russia's attempts to show Armenia and Azerbaijan its red lines during the summit in Sochi on 31 October disrupted a positive moment in Armenia-Azerbaijan relations that had been ongoing throughout 2022. A deterioration in Azerbaijan-Iran relations has further hightened tensions in the region. "One can foresee that new escalations and hostilities will be imminent, if the peace efforts fail to deliver tangible outcomes between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and if some external actors continue to fuel the tensions in the region", writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu.
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Opinion: Russian obstacles to the peace process are contributing to renewed tensions in the region

Opinion: Russian obstacles to the peace process are contributing to renewed tensions in the region

Statements made by Russian president Putin and foreign minister Lavrov since October have made Armenian prime minister Nikol Pashinyan a target of nationalist groups in Armenia and its diaspora. The result has been Armenian procrastination in the pursuit of the peace process. These Russian attempts to derail the peace process led by the EU are adding to increased tensions in the region. In this op-ed for commonspace.eu, Vasif Huseynov says that "Baku is not planning to engage in extended negotiations with Armenia and its external patrons with no clear prospects for a successful conclusion. Azerbaijan can now more confidently counter the threats to its territorial integrity and its efforts to reintegrate the Karabakh region."
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Opinion: Russia's muted comeback to the Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process

Opinion: Russia's muted comeback to the Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process

"After a long pause, on October 31, Russia brought together the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan in a meeting mediated by President Vladimir Putin in the Russian resort town of Sochi. Over the past year, ever since the November 26, 2021 summit in Sochi, Russia’s initiatives  in support of a peace process between the two South Caucasus republics did not  give results, while the major mediating role in the process was taken over by the European Union", writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu. The document shared following the trilateral meeting did not contain any provisions concerning critical issues such as the future of Nagorno-Karabakh or the Russian peacekeeping force in the region. "How will the the peace talks unfold in the immediate future, especially considering that the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan are supposed to meet in Brussels this month in accordance with the results of August 31 summit", asks Vasif Huseynov.
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Opinion: Russia fears it is being elbowed out of the South Caucasus, and prepares to react

Opinion: Russia fears it is being elbowed out of the South Caucasus, and prepares to react

Russia is worried that the success of European diplomacy in approximating the positions of Armenia and Azerbaijan, and the prospect of a peace agreement before the end of the year, would see it elbowed out of the South Caucasus. Russia may use its presence in Karabakh to throw spokes in the wheel, writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu. "This situation seriously threatens peace and stability in the South Caucasus. The region would  descend into a catastrophic escalations if the present peace efforts fail, and the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict becomes another theater of the Russia-West confrontation. Baku and Yerevan, having declared their willingness to recognize each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, would suffer the most from such a situation. Hence, both should make efforts to reach a deal with a delicate geopolitical balance", he writes.
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Opinion: A peace process in jeopardy

Opinion: A peace process in jeopardy

"The recent flare-up along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border and the subsequent developments in Armenia  raise concerns that the region might be, unfortunately, still far away from a peace treaty and a peaceful future", writes Vasif Huseynov in this op-ed for commonspace.eu. "Surprisingly for many observers, the proposal for a peace treaty on the basis of mutual recognition of each other’s territorial integrity and inviolability of internationally-recognized borders is not supported by a large number of Armenians", he adds.