The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) hosted a roundtable discussion today entitled “The Azerbaijani parliamentary elections: Implications for Armenia and Karabagh.” Participants in the discussion included several members of the Armenian parliament, leading analysts, policy specialists, and representatives from the diplomatic community, international organizations and the media.
Welcoming the participants, ACNIS Director Richard Giragosian assessed the outcome of the election in Azerbaijan, with a focus on the military buildup by Azerbaijan and Baku's emergence as the primary threat to regional security and stability. He explained that “as a negotiator, and as a neighbor of Armenia, the recent election in Azerbaijan was important in determining and defining what kind of Azerbaijan Armenia and Karabakh are dealing with. Obviously the election results show that Armenia has neither a democratic nor a reliable neighbor.”
Giragosian also noted that “after yet another unfree and unfair election, it is now a question whether the Azerbaijani people will actually support the illegitimate government's threats of war.”
ACNIS Senior Analyst Manvel Sargsyan then analyzed the Azerbaijani parliamentary election's impact on the Mountainous Karabakh Republic. He said that Azerbaijan continued to be a “problematic country” for the international community and that the way to resolve the current problems was through the recognition of Karabakh.
“Observing the apathy within Azerbaijani society even during the elections, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev speaks profusely about restarting the Karabagh war. This demonstrates that there is very limited leverage toward influencing the people, and to keep the people ideologically alert, Aliyev needs to constantly hold high the ‘flag' of a second Karabagh war,” Sargsian noted.
He continued to say that “having extracted a positive assessment from the CIS observers” concerning the elections, it actually compelled the European observers to make mild evaluations, “that is, an uncertain international situation has yet again been established with respect to Azerbaijan.”
"CIS and Russia are interested in solving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and we go step by step towards rapprochement between the two countries," told CIS Executive Secretary Sergei Lebedev reporters in Baku.
"Armenia and Azerbaijan are brotherly countries for Russia, everything possible is being done for the rapprochement of these countries, because neither Armenia nor Azerbaijan will move to somewhere else. It's their God-given land and they are doomed to live together. Therefore, Russia will make every effort for their rapprochement as a co-chair of OSCE Minsk Group, and as their partner in the CIS, and as a neighboring country," said Lebedev.
Public Radio of Armenia