The rhetoric is beginning to take shape: Yerevan is forcefully seeking peace while Baku is threatening force, and the Russian Federation may be using the standoff between Azerbaijan and Armenia to expand its presence in the South Caucasus. Despite its outwardly appearances, however, the Armenian Republic today, in my opinion, enjoys a better standing in the region than its wealthier neighbors. War games carried out in Nagorno Karabakh and Medvedev's successful visit to Armenia were very symbolic in that they stated to the world - Armenia won't be defeated due to its military strenght and its close alliance with Russia. I firmly believe that Moscow wants and needs a viable Armenia, and a viable Armenia is dependent on Nagorno Karabakh.

I firmly believe that Armenia is to play even a greater role in the region. I firmly believe that the current administration in Yerevan headed by President Sargsyan is fully capable of handling these crucial and complex geopolitical matters. I don't know whether or not Moscow would like to see Armenia connected to Artsakh by a land bridge, I'm not privy to the finer details of the negotiations process, nor am I privy to Kremlin insider information. I have a sense that, generally speaking, Moscow could care less about the matter. In final analysis, Moscow simply wants to resolve the on going crisis between Armenia and Azerbaijan under terms that appeal to its regional interests. So, if the connection in question suites its interests, it will support it. In my opinion, the primary responsibility of connecting Armenia to Nagorno Karabakh should be placed on Armenian politicians. Instead of bitching and complaining and threatening to move closer to the West, as some Armenian "nationalists" tend to do when things don't go their way with Moscow, we Armenians need to draw on all our national assets to make a strong case in the halls of the Kremlin about the vital/crucial necessity of physically connecting Armenia to Nagorno Karabakh. We need to make a pan-national effort, a concerted/persistent effort, to convince Russians that Nagorno Karabakh's connection to Armenia should be, in the geostrategic sense at least, very important for them. This may be happening in Moscow, I just don't see it...

What I see instead within our general population is a lot of ignorant/angry talk about Russians "betraying us" again, and I see our nation's representatives talking about moving closer to the West. This does not mean, however, that private talks between Armenian and Russian officials are not going on. Regardless of what we Armenians may or may not be doing in the Kremlin, I do have a strong feeling that Moscow would indeed like to see Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh connected. It's just a matter of getting the Azeris/Turks around to accepting the idea. To that effect, Moscow, Yerevan and Baku may decide to fabricate a fresh round of hostilities where Armenians win again, thereby convincing the Azeri population that the territory in question is lost for good. Believe it or not what I just stated is not a far-fetch scenario. Something similar may have occurred last August when Armenian forces quietly seized a large swath of land in the Martakert district.

Going by what I see, and by reading between the lines of the diplomatic rhetoric we have been hearing as of late, I believe that the Kremlin is attempting to reestablish itself as the region's supreme power - politically, militarily and economically. The reasons why Moscow would want to reinsert itself in the Caucasus region is self explanatory. They wouldn't care how the dispute between Azerbaijan and Armenia is resolved - as long as Azerbaijan or Armenia don't become too powerful as a result of it. As with all major powers, they want their sphere of influence populated by nation-states that are dependent on it. It's obvious that Russian policy makers don't want Armenia looking elsewhere for alliances and they feel threatened not only by NATO but by Turks in general as well. So, Armenia is one of their principal ways of retarding the spread of Turkish influence in the region. However, because Moscow has a very lucrative economic relations with Turks and Azeris, they cannot openly and flagrantly oppose them. While Moscow props up Armenia and ensures its security they also give Turks lip service and some leeway. Anyway, this is all just a nasty geopolitical chess game. As long as this game is being played our tiny, landlocked and impoverished Armenia will suffer stagnation and deprivation. This is why I am hoping for the quick and comprehensive takeover of the entire Caucasus region by Russia so that this xxxxing game would finally end and stability and economic progress could begin...




RUSSIA UNDERTAKES TO SETTLE THE CONFLICT OVER NAGORNO-KARABAKH; Presidents of Russia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan will meet to discuss Nagorno-Karabakh. Toting up results of his visit to Yerevan, President Dmitry Medvedev said the leaders of Russia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan would meet soon to discuss the Nagorno-Karabakh problem. Armenia is one of the victims of the South Ossetian conflict. Ferry to Poti, Georgia, is the only alternative to expensive shipment of cargo by the air. The ferry makes the trip once a week these days - too infrequently even for so small a country as Armenia is. Political difficulties meanwhile are even more formidable. Moscow's ally as it is, Yerevan is supposed to support recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. It cannot do so. Supporting recognition of the former Georgian autonomies, it will have to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as well. Failure to do so will frustrate Armenian general public. Recognition on the other hand is not something Azerbaijan will put up with. Skirmishes between Armenian and Azerbaijani border guards are too frequent as it is. "Armenia is ready for the negotiations," President Serj Sarkisjan announced. He said, however, that Armenia intended to take into account Nagorno-Karabakh's right to self-determination. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said several days ago that Karabakh conflict settlement was making progress and that a couple of nuances only had to be addressed now. Yerevan took offense. It decided that what Lavrov was saying was that abandonment of claims for Nagorno-Karabakh would make it easier for Armenia to get out of the transport blockade. What information is available to Izvestia, however, indicates that Lavrov reassured his Armenian colleagues and said that he had only wanted to focus attention on some practical issues. Including, one might think, the recent improvement of the relations between Armenia and Turkey. What will happen now? Some experts assume that deployment of Russian peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh is a definite possibility (there are no legal obstacles to it, as matters stand). Others believe that another Russian military base may be established in Armenia, a means to change the correlation of forces in the region in Moscow's favor.

Source: http://groong.usc.edu/news/msg248321.html

What effect will the meeting between Armenian, Azerbaijani and Russian Presidents have?

The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has always been a format of rivalry between Russia and the United States. Russian President Dmitri Medvedev’s Yerevan statement on his intention to invite the Armenian and Azerbaijani Presidents to Moscow for the regulation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was not an unexpected move. After the August events it became clear to everyone in the Region that Russia would not content itself with «compelling Georgia to peace»; there would also be other steps directed to the consolidation of cracked Russian positions in the South Caucasus. That Russian positions cracked in the Region is quite a fact, and the regional states will hardly seek repetition of the Georgian scenario. Especially at the time of financial-economic crisis the policy of twisting arms, which, by the way, neither bypassed Russia, cannot lead us to a silent consent with the Russian viewpoint. However strange it may sound, Armenia found itself in a more advantageous position than Georgia or Azerbaijan. It has neither oil, nor passage to the Black Sea, but it has a great desire to settle the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with minimal losses. Now we shall not dwell on the fact that doing it behind the back of Nagorno Karabakh is not ethical at all. That's not the point. Yerevan has simply received a certain impulse and a little freedom of manipulation in the painful issue. Now the future of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic and that of Armenia itself depend on how Armenia will make use of the situation, and Yerevan cannot but realize the real value of the moment. The Region is changing rapidly, and quite soon we shall have to deal with a fairly new South Caucasus. It presupposes new relations too: Russia-South Caucasus, USA-South Caucasus, and Turkey-South Caucasus. As for the Karabakh conflict, it has always been a format of rivalry between Russia and the United States. This rivalry has always existed, but it has become more intense now, and the latest events are the proof of it: the Washington meeting of Armenian Prime-Minister Tigran Sargsyan with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the one-day visit of US Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried, and before it - visit of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. However, Russia faces a serious problem after the «five-day war»: its image has been thoroughly destroyed in the eyes of the world community, and now Russia has to prove that militant solution of the South Ossetian and Abkhazian conflict was just an exception and that the Russian Federation is potent enough to solve its problems in some other ways too, i.e. through negotiations. “The events of August 2008 have created a new platform for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Azerbaijan will never become a completely pro-western country, like Georgia is. Moreover, the latter has been disvalued as an oil and gas transit country and the world powers have given a fresh look at Armenia, whose ‘football diplomacy’ produced the desired effect. Turkey had started developing its Caucasus stability and cooperation pact still in spring of the current year and the five-day war in South Ossetia just pushed Ankara to action. Thus, the Turkish initiative has not only played its role in the Armenian-Azerbaijani relations, but it has also changed the whole situation in the region,” considers political analyst Sergey Minasyan. Minasyan also notes Russia’s «strange» intention to speed up the Nagorno-Karabakh process. “Presently Russia is imitating the Ramboullet and Bucharest scenarios. However, for the conflicting sides maintenance of the status quo and assistance from the U.S. and EU is more preferable. I am not sure that speeding up the process is in Russia’s interests,” Minasyan says. According to Head of the Russian Duma Defence Committee Viktor Zavarzin, the intended meeting between Armenian, Azerbaijani and Russian Presidents will convey a new impulse to the Karabakh talks and will help to ease the stress in the Region. “Resolution of the conflict is possible only on the negotiation level with observation of international norms, and it should satisfy all the interested parties,” Zavarzin concluded. One point, however, remains incomprehensible – how is it possible to satisfy all the interested parties of the conflict?

Source: http://www.panarmenian.net/details/eng/?nid=943

BETWEEN RUSSIA AND THE WEST; Armenia in the Wake of the August Events

President Medvedev visits Armenia; The state of the Armenian economy has deteriorated to the point where President Serge Sargsian even had to visit Georgia. President Dmitri Medvedev made an official visit to Yerevan yesterday, attempting to persuade Armenia that Moscow will come up with a solution. Russia's chief ally in the Caucasus region, Armenia, has found itself cut off from Russia since the Russian-Georgian war. Meanwhile, some progress has been observed in Armenia's relations with Turkey. The state of the Armenian economy has deteriorated to the point where President Serge Sargsian even had to visit Georgia. President Dmitri Medvedev made an official visit to Yerevan yesterday, attempting to persuade Armenia that Moscow will come up with a solution. A number of non-binding bilateral cooperation agreements were signed in the course of Medvedev's visit. The war in the Caucasus has left Russian diplomacy facing many problems. To date, not even Belarus - Russia's closest ally - has recognized the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Armenia's position on the issue was best expressed by its president, who made an official visit to Tbilisi in September. Afterwards, Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili declared that Sargsian had expressed support for Georgia's territorial integrity. Last weekend, Yerevan was visited by US State Department official Daniel Fried and Robert Simmons, NATO's special envoy for the South Caucasus. Afterwards, Sergsian stated that Yerevan regards NATO "as a component of our national security" - despite Armenia's military alliance with Russia. Moscow has a military base at Gyumri and a group of border guards; Armenia is a member of the CIS Collective Security Treaty Organization, which is often compared to NATO. Yerevan's actions have largely been prompted by Russia's actions. Essentially, Armenia now has only one ground corridor for access to the outside world: Iran. But this corridor is not fully available, since a number of leading Western nations are attempting to isolate Iran itself. And Armenia's other neighbors are Georgia, Turkey, and Azerbaijan. Alexei Makarkin, deputy general director of the Political Techniques Center: "No matter how much it wants to, Russia cannot build a pipeline directly to Armenia or offer an alternative option for energy deliveries. This is politics, and Serge Sargsian has to seek ways of solving his country's problems in the current circumstances." RISI analyst Azhdar Kurtov says that Armenia is interested in unblocking the current situation - not only for Nagorno-Karabakh, but also with regard to Armenia's geographical isolation: "But Russia still isn't providing answers to all of Armenia's questions, so I think the geopolitical game will continue: Armenia will attempt to obtain advantages from both Russia and the West simultaneously."

Source: http://groong.usc.edu/news/msg248292.html


Russia has taken the center stage in international efforts to resolve the Karabakh conflict, which could yield a breakthrough before the end of this year. President Dmitry Medvedev is expected to host a potentially decisive meeting of his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts next month. Moscow may thus be trying to sideline the OSCE’s so-called Minsk Group on Karabakh, which it has long co-chaired with the United States and France. When he paid an official visit to Yerevan on October 21, Medvedev publicly urged Presidents Serzh Sarkisian of Armenia and Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan to meet in his presence in Russia. The Karabakh dispute was high on the agenda. “I hope that the three presidents will meet in the very near future to continue discussions on this theme,” he told a joint news conference with Sarkisian. “I hope that the meeting will take place in Russia” (Regnum, October 21). He noted that the Karabakh peace process now seemed to be “in an advanced stage.”

Medvedev discussed what the Kremlin described as preparations for the Armenian-Azerbaijani summit in a phone call with Aliyev the next day. Konstantin Zatulin, a Kremlin-linked Russian pundit, told Armenian journalists afterward that the crucial summit would likely take place in early November; but neither conflicting party has yet confirmed the meeting, let alone announced any dates for it. Aliyev’s chief foreign policy aide, Novruz Mammadov, has said only that it was “possible”. Armenian officials have not commented on the matter at all. Medvedev announced his initiative following unusually optimistic statements on Karabakh peace prospects that were made by his foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov. In an October 7 interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Lavrov spoke of a “very real chance” to end the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict in the coming weeks. “There remain two or three unresolved issues that need to be agreed upon at the next meetings of the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan,” he said. He added that the future of the so-called Lachin corridor, which is the shortest overland link between Armenia and Karabakh, is now the main stumbling block in the peace talks. Three days later, Lavrov held a trilateral meeting with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts on the sidelines of a CIS summit in Bishkek.

Many analysts in the South Caucasus and the West have long contended that Russia was uninterested in a Karabakh settlement, lest it lose leverage against Azerbaijan and, even more, Armenia, its main ally in the region. Peace with Azerbaijan, they have argued, would reduce the significance for Armenia of maintaining close military ties with Russia and make the Armenian economy less dependent on Russian energy supplies. Medvedev’s desire to host the crucial Aliyev-Sarkisian encounter is, however, a clear indication that Karabakh peace is not necessarily incompatible with Russian goals and interests in the region, especially if Moscow plays a key role in a multinational peace-keeping force that would have to be deployed in the conflict zone. Armenia is rife with speculation that Moscow is trying to cajole Azerbaijan into agreeing to a Russian troop presence and pursuing a more pro-Russian policy on other issues, notably the transportation of Caspian oil and gas to the West. “To that end [the Russians] need to force Armenia into making essentially unilateral and absolutely unacceptable concessions on the Karabakh issue,” Yerkir, a Yerevan weekly controlled by the governing Armenian Revolutionary Federation party, wrote on October 24, reflecting the growing opinion among local observers.


Source: http://jamestown.org/edm/article.php?article_id=2373481

Kremlin Calling: Russia in New Push For Karabakh Peace Plan

The Kremlin appeared to be one step ahead of Washington this week as the Russian president extended an invitation to the Armenian and Azeri leaders for talks in Moscow that may prove decisive for the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement process. The Russian intention to play a more decisive role as a mediator in the longstanding conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan became apparent during Dmitry Medvedev’s official visit to Yerevan earlier this week. At the same time, Medvedev appeared to be calling on the Armenian leadership to determine their foreign-policy priorities. Visits by top officials are no longer a surprise in the South Caucasus given the increasingly tense situation in the region as contradictions between the countries interested in the “political re-shape” of the South Caucasus are entering a phase of culmination. The fact that two visits were taking place in Yerevan simultaneously – by Russian President Medvedev and NATO’s special representative to the South Caucasus and Central Asia Robert Simmons – is one of the characteristics of the modern stage of the development of political processes in this region. On October 20, shortly before Russia’s Medvedev was due to arrive, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan met with NATO’s Simmons and said that “the European orientation is one of the priorities on Armenia’s foreign-policy agenda and cooperation with NATO is a major element of it.” Sargsyan also stressed that Yerevan would continue interaction with the US-led military alliance regarding it as a component of Armenia’s security. It is probably because of this that in his main speech in Yerevan Russia’s head of state accentuated attention on the vital necessity of introducing a coordinated international policy by strategic allies that Armenia and Russia consider themselves to be. “Coordinated actions in the international arena are a serious factor of security, strengthening of positions in both the region and the world and it has become particularly noticeable in recent years,” Medvedev stressed. In this regard, the Russian Regnum news agency notes: “If the president of Russia suddenly starts to speak to the president of Armenia about the need for ‘coordinated actions’, it means that Armenia simply has made Russia face a fact in some area of its foreign policy without first notifying Russia of this. And Russia diplomatically points out that such actions of Armenia do not contribute to collective security and weaken its positions in the region and the world.”

Source: http://armenianow.com/?action=viewAr...D=1206&lng=eng

Russia’s President, in Yerevan, Sees Quick Action on Karabakh

President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia is looking forward to a meeting of the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan in Moscow, he announced during an official visit to Armenia on October 20-21. "I am hopeful that we are in the stage where progress is being made," he said in a joint press conference with President Serge Sargsian. "In any case, the two sides are prepared to look for solutions. I will not comment on the details of the negotiations because they are details of negotiations and that is their value. I hope that in the near future a meeting of three presidents takes place in the capital of Russia," he added. A large part of the discussions between Mr. Sargsian and Mr. Medvedev was dedicated to the resolution of the Karabakh conflict. Armenia is prepared to continue the negotiations on the basis of the Madrid principles," Mr. Sargsian said, referring to a proposal presented to Armenia and Azerbaijan by high officials from the United States, Russia, and France. "These are foundations, which make it possible to recognize Karabakh's right to self-determination and some other issues that are matters of principle for us," Mr. Sargsian added.

Moscow-Baku talks

After leaving Armenia, Russia's president spoke on October 22 to the president of Azerbaijan. Mr. Medvedev and President Ilham Aliyev discussed preparations for a meeting of the three presidents, Interfax reported. Mr. Medvedev had visited Baku on July 3. During that visit, he and Mr. Aliyev signed a Declaration on Friendship and Strategic Partnership. In the declaration, Moscow and Baku emphasized "the importance of speedily resolving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on the basis of widely accepted norms and principles of international law, and first of all, maintaining and guaranteeing those of the sovereignty of states, their territorial integrity, and the unchangeability of their borders." The two presidents also pledged to promote military cooperation (Russia last year sold tanks to Azerbaijan for the first time since the mid-1990s) and to work against groups undermining the sovereignty of each of the two countries (with both sides stepping up attacks on Islamist groups in the border areas). But when Mr. Aliyev returned Mr. Medvedev's visit in September - after the war in Georgia - Mr. Medvedev did not repeat the verbiage about territorial integrity.

Madrid Principles

At a meeting in Madrid in November 2007, U.S. undersecretary of state Nicholas Burns, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, and French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner presented to the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan a document with their proposals for the resolution of the Karabakh conflict. The three officials represent the three states that co-chair the OSCE Minsk Group, which mediates the resolution of the Karabakh conflict. "It is the same document that has been on the table for about two years," Vartan Oskanian, Armenia's foreign minister at the time said after the Madrid meeting. "In those matters where there was no agreement, the co-chairs have added their own proposals to the sides, for consideration. That is the only detail of that document. For that reason it is important to be careful in one's assessment, because the level was high, and the expectations could also be high." The substance of the earlier document referred to by Mr. Oskanian, known as the Prague document, was made public in June 2006.

It was U.S. deputy assistant secretary of state Matthew Bryza, the U.S. co-chair of the Minsk Group, who disclosed the main principles of a framework peace accord. Under the principles, he said, Armenian forces would leave those territories of Azerbaijan in which they are now stationed; Armenia and Azerbaijan would normalize their economic and diplomatic ties; peace-keepers would be stationed; there would be international economic aid for Karabakh; and more. In the end, he said, there would be a vote on the future status of Nagorno-Karabakh. Mr. Bryza said the proposed vote would take place "at some point" in the future, after the liberation of Armenian-occupied lands in Azerbaijan, the deployment of an international peacekeeping force in the conflict zone, and the restoration of political and economic ties between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Official Yerevan responded quickly to the June 2006 disclosures, saying they were partial.

The matter of a referendum and that of handing the Lachin corridor and Kelbajar to Azerbaijan were the most contentious issues. As the negotiations continued, the co-chairs offered their own proposals - the Madrid Principles - for the resolution of the issues on which Yerevan and Baku could not agree. Since Yerevan had accepted the earlier document as a basis for negotiations and Baku had rejected it, the assumption was that the Madrid principles were more favorable to Azerbaijan. On October 7, speaking to the Russian daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta, Mr. Lavrov, the foreign minister, said, "There remain two or three unresolved issues which need to be agreed upon at the next meetings of the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan," Mr. Lavrov told the Russian newspaper. "The first among them is the Lachin corridor," he added. Working toward a settlement Mr. Bryza lately told the BBC, "The resolution of the Karabakh conflict must start with the principle of Azerbaijan's territorial integrity. Other complementary principles can then be incorporated." He added, "We must say that yes, from a legal perspective, by law, Nagorno-Karabakh is part of Azerbaijan. But, after all, so that the negotiations result in an agreement, Armenia too must agree to it. We know that Armenia has a different position, and we must use very creative, constructive approaches so that Armenia and Azerbaijan find a common language."

Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried, in Yerevan on October 18, in response to a question from the Armenian Reporter's Armen Hakobyan, clarified current U.S. policy: "Territorial integrity is a recognized principle of international law. There are other principles, such as self-determination. Now we all know what we're talking about here. Bringing these principles together, reconciling these principles is extremely difficult and complicated." He added that the Minsk Group continues to work "to actually find a settlement." Mr. Fried gave no indication, however, that a settlement is imminent.

Source: http://www.reporter.am/index.cfm?obj...FABEB2CC3D0E97

Serzh Sargsyan: "There is no Alternative to the Peaceful Resolution of the Karabakh Conflict"

"The resolution of the Karabakh conflict is possible only if Azerbaijan recognizes the right of the Karabakh people for self-determination", said Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan in his exclusive interview to Public Television of Armenia. "The resolution of the Karabakh conflict is possible in case Nagorno Karabakh has a land border with Armenia, if international organizations and leading states ensure the security of the people of Nagorno Karabakh and if Azerbaijan recognizes the right of the Karabakh people for self-determination", he said according to the press service. Sargsyan noted that after a long-lasting passive period the process of the resolution of the Karabakh issue has entered the active phase. "This is caused by at least two main aspects: first of all, both Azerbaijan and Armenia have completed the presidential elections and second, the well-known events, which occurred in the region, have again persuaded everyone that there is no alternative to the peaceful resolution of the conflict", said he. The President of Armenia considers that activeness is useful, along with the public discussions and he is confident that there will be a more active phase of public discussions. According to Sargsyan, discussions are always useful, but they must be based on the only interest - the interest of the Armenian people. "We have sacrificed much for the resolution of the Karabakh conflict to close eyes or ignore the facts of speculations. We are settling a sacred issue. We are settling an important historical task and it is immoral if someone tries to find out a different interest during its resolution", said Sargsyan.

Source: http://www.today.az/news/politics/48536.html

"NKR Defense Minister": "We will launch offensive for neutralization of the threat without waiting for the attack of the armed forces of "Azerbaijan"

"The tactical trainings with shooting, held in Nagorno Karabakh on Saturday, were of special nature", said the "defense minister" of the so-called "Nagorno Karabakh Republic" Movses Akopyan. He said the "defense army" of "Nagorno Karabakh Republic" arranged the trainings only for offensive. "We are preparing our servicemen for not waiting for Azerbaijan's attack, but, depending on the situation, for launching an offensive for neutralization of the threat to our security", said Akopyan.

Source: http://today.az/news/politics/48523.html


It casts doubt on appropriateness of Turkish initiative to create a "Caucasian stability and cooperation platform" "The August events showed that every knotty problem should be solved based on Principles of International Law, through negotiations. What about the settlement stage, it is hard to maintain the level of agreements reached up to now. Anyhow, I hope that in the nearest future the meeting of the three presidents will take place in the capital of Russia in order to continue discussions of the issue", Russian President said October 21 in Yerevan at a joint press conference with RA President Serzh Sargsian. Turkish press touched upon Medvedev’s visit to Armenia from the aspect of the initiative to settle Karabakh conflict and strengthening of positions in the South Caucasus. It underlined the possibility of the trilateral meeting of the Armenian, Azerbaijani and Russian presidents in Moscow. In its October 22 issue Turkish "Radikal" threw light on Russian President’s visit under heading "Demand for Armenia increases". New York turkishny.com website mentioned that Medvedev organizes a meeting to settle Karabakh issue. Turkish Public TV also touched upon the visit without going into details. According to "Radikal", Medvedev’s visit to Armenia was qualified in the Russian press as a manifestation of "Calling Armenia to order". According to the Turkish newspaper, after settling accounts with Georgia, Russia gets down to a peacemaking mission between Armenia and Azerbaijan in order to weaken the influence of the West in the Caucasus. "Radikal" also concentrates attention on the circumstance that Medvedev’s visit took place after Gul’s visit to Yerevan, also several visits of the US diplomats –Mathew Bryza, Daniel Fried. On these grounds, the Turkish newspaper supposes that because of the South Ossetia War Armenia was compelled to find a new ally, and because of the Armenian neutrality Armenian-Russian relations stagnated. And Medvedev’s visit aim’s at weakening of the West’s influence on Armenia underlining that Yerevan’s only friend is Russia. In order to substantiate the above-mentioned suppositions "Radikal" quotes passages form Russian newspapers. Turkishny.com website also attaches particular importance to the proposal of Medvedev on trilateral meeting of the Armenian, Azerbaijani and Russian presidents. It may be explained by failure of Turkish Prime Minister Receb Tayyip Erdogan’s initiative to create a "Caucasian security and cooperation platform", as Medvedev’s proposal is quite realistic in contrast to Erdogan’s initiative, and Russia has the potential to realize it.

Source: http://www.azg.am/EN/2008102401

Azerbaijani Ministry Refutes Deployment of Russian Peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh

It is impossible to deploy peace peacekeeping forces of any country in Nagorno-Karabakh region, an inseparable part of Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani Ministry of Defense officially stated. “Any issue on Nagorno-Karabakh cannot be a topic of discussions without Azerbaijan’s participation. Foreign interference into sovereign and independent Azerbaijan is impossible,” Eldar Sabiroglu, the spokesman for the Ministry of Defense, told Trend News on 18 October. Negotiations are being held between official Moscow and Armenia to place peacekeeping forces of the Russian Army in Nagorno-Karabakh, the Russian media reports. These reports are of provocative character, Sabiroglu said. “It can be easily seen that these reports are false. I think Armenia cannot believe in this lie, as well. Armenia knows well that it cannot happen,,” he said. Armenia has occupied 20% of Azerbaijanїs lands including Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding seven regions. The occupation began in 1988. Azerbaijan lost the Nagorno-Karabakh, except of Shusha and Khojali, in December 1991. In 1992-93, Armenian Armed Forces occupied Shusha, Khojali and Nagorno-Karabakhїs seven surrounding regions. In 1994, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement at which time the active hostilities ended. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group ( Russia, France, and the US) are currently holding peaceful, but fruitless negotiations.

Source: http://news.trendaz.com/index.shtml?...323450&lang=EN

Armenians Launches Military Trainings in Azerbaijani Occupied Territories

The Armenian Armed Forces launched military trainings in the Azerbaijani occupied territories approximately at 11:00AM. According to the regional correspondent of Trend News, the trainings are held in the occupied Uzundara village. The blasted shells cause strong explosions. The sound of explosions is clearly heard in nearby villages. As the occupied territories are not controlled by Azerbaijan, the Armenian Armed Forces hold military trainings in the territory. Eldar Sabiroglu, the Head of the Defence Ministry press-service, said that this was not the fact of implementation of military trainings by Armenians in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan. The Azerbaijani Armed Forces are not concerned with the fact and are ready to retaliate at any time.

Source: http://news.trendaz.com/index.shtml?...329261&lang=EN

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Dear reader,

Arevordi will be taking a sabbatical to tend to personal matters. New blog commentaries will henceforth be posted on an irregular basis. The comments board however will continue to be moderated on a regular basis.

The last 20 years or so has also helped me see Russia as the last front against scourges of Westernization, Globalism, American expansionism, Zionism, Islamic extremism and pan-Turkism. I have also come to see Russia as the last hope humanity has for the preservation of classical western civilization, Apostolic Christianity and the traditional nation-state. This realization compelled me to create this blog in 2010. Immediately, this blog became one of the very few voices in the vastness of cyberia that dared to preach about the dangers of Globalism and the Anglo-American-Jewish alliance, and the only voice preaching the strategic importance of Armenia remaining within Russia's orbit. From about 2010 to 2015 I did monthly, at times weekly, commentaries about Russian-Armenian relations and Eurasian geopolitics in general. It was very difficult as I had no assistance in this endeavor. The time I put into this blog therefore came at the expense of work and family. But a powerful feeling inside me urged me to keep going; and I did.

When Armenia finally joined the EEU and integrated its armed forces into Russia's military structures a couple of years ago, I finally felt a deep sense of satisfaction and relaxation, as if a very heavy burden was lifted off my shoulders. I finally felt that my personal mission was accomplished. I therefore felt I could take a step back, as I really needed the rest. Simply put: I have lived to see the institutionalization of Russian-Armenian alliance. Also, I feel more confident now that Armenians are collectively recognizing the strategic importance of Armenia's ties with Russia. Moreover, I feel satisfied knowing that, at least on a subatomic level, I had a hand in the outcome. As a result, I feel a strong sense of mission accomplished. I therefore no longer have the urge to continue as in the past. In other words, the motivational force that had propelled me in previous years has been gradually dissipating because I feel that this blog has lived to see the realization of its stated goal. Going forward, I do not want to write merely for the sake of writing. Also, I do not want to say something if I have nothing important to say. I feel like I have said everything I needed to say. Henceforth, I will post seasonal commentaries about topics I find important. I will however continue moderating the blog's comments section on a regular basis; ultimately because I'm interested in what my readers have to say and also because it's through readers here that I am at times made aware of interesting developments.

To limit clutter in the comments section, I kindly ask all participants of this blog to please keep comments coherent and strictly relevant to the featured topic of discussion. Moreover, please realize that when there are several anonymous visitors posting comments simultaneously, it becomes very confusing (not to mention extremely annoying) trying to figure out who is who and who said what.Therefore, if you are here to engage in conversation, make an observation, express an idea or simply attack me, I ask you to at least use a moniker to identify yourself. Moreover, please appreciate the fact that I have put an enormous amount of information into this blog. In my opinion, most of my blog commentaries and articles, some going back ten-plus years, are in varying degrees relevant to this day and will remain so for a long time to come. Articles in this blog can therefore be revisited by longtime readers and new comers alike. I therefore ask the reader to treat this blog as a depository of important information relating to Eurasian geopolitics, Russian-Armenian relations and humanity's historic fight against the evils of Globalism and Westernization.

Thank you as always for reading.