Armenia attempts to further manipulate Nagorno-Karabakh peace talks

Armenia attempts to further manipulate Nagorno-Karabakh peace talks

06 November 2019, 13:52 833
As always, Armenia is once again trying to manipulate the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, who made mindless statements such as "Karabakh is Armenia" during his illegal visit to Khankendi, has once again placed himself in a ridiculous position in the face of the international community. Pashinyan made statements on social media saying he intends to hold a referendum on the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. What is the motive behind his statement?

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan putting aside specific issues speaks only of abstract ideas, political scientist Rasim Musabeyov told Kaspi. "Azerbaijan has also previously said that when a final settlement on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has been reached, the people’s opinion will be asked. But Pashinyan doesn't have a right to hold a referendum in Karabakh under present circumstances, and this is nonsense. Pashinyan is not saying he will hold a referendum. He is saying that such a step could be taken in the future. But we have not yet reached this stage. Pashinyan wants to shift responsibility with such suggestions. From time to time, Ter-Petrosyan and Kocharyan expressed their readiness to make some arrangements. Unlike them, Pashinyan does not say he is ready for any agreement. On the contrary, as I have stated he wants to shift the responsibility onto the people. If Pashinyan heads the country, then he should take responsibility,” he said.

Musabeyov noted that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs try not to react to such nonsensical statements voiced by Pashinyan because they are now coordinators between the two sides. "The co-chairs do not want to cause offense to the parties. However, Pashinyan's statement, "Karabakh is Armenia – period", provoked a reaction. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has expressed his view on this. Now Pashinyan is making other mindless statements regarding the referendum,” he added.
Director of the Atlas Research Center, political scientist Elkhan Shahinoglu said that Pashinyan has once again touched upon several issues regarding the Karabakh problem via social media. "Pashinyan said the tension on the front had diminished and he linked it to a brief exchange of views at the Ashgabat meeting with President Ilham Aliyev. The Armenian prime minister meant that at the mentioned meeting a verbal agreement was reached on adhering to the ceasefire. In truth, official Baku did give Pashinyan a chance for months after he overthrew Serzh Sargsyan and assumed power. Before and a few months after the Ashgabat meeting, there were no serious ceasefire violations, but later on, the ceasefire was broken several times. There was no point in adhering to the ceasefire after Pashinyan addressed the separatists in Khankendi on August 5, and said, "Karabakh is Armenia." Therefore, Pashinyan has to prepare for many ceasefire violations. At the same time, Pashinyan said that although there was no progress in the Nagorno-Karabakh talks, interesting dynamics were observed. He is just trying to calm his community by saying that the talks are "hopeful" though there is no progress. In fact, there is no progress in negotiations, as stated in the continuous statements of Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Armenian community is most worried about war. Pashinyan, too, deliberately avoids pronouncing the word war and tries to give his community hope, even if it is wrong,” he said.

Shahinoglu stressed that Pashinyan is trying to convince the Armenian community that there is no conflict between him and the separatists of Nagorno-Karabakh. The Karabakh issue is a national issue, Pashinyan said, noting that there was no disagreement over the settlement of the conflict between Yerevan and the Nagorno-Karabakh separatists. In his speech, Pashinyan said that his main duty was the settlement to be acceptable for the Armenian people and he also voiced his new proposal – to hold a referendum on the settlement of the conflict. In doing so, Pashinyan tries to shift responsibility. This means even if Pashinyan reaches an agreement with the President of Azerbaijan in the future, this does not mean that the official Yerevan has also agreed to the terms. The agreement would then be put forward to a referendum for Pashinyan to share responsibility for his decision with the Armenian community. Pashinyan's statement on live broadcasts shows that it is in vain to expect results from the talks. Pressure should be increased on Pashinyan, who hopes to reduce the intensity of the ceasefire violations, so that he does not come to wrong conclusions.