Armenian News Network / Groong

 

Groong: Week in Review

 

ANN/Groong

November 15, 2020

Table of Contents

 

Panelists

Your Hosts

Introduction

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Topic This Week: The War in Artsakh

The war ends. What are the terms of the deal?

Pax Russiana

The extent of Turkey’s presence in Azerbaijan

Jubilation in Baku

Wrap-up

Keywords

 

Panelists

          Asbed Kotchikian

          Emil Sanamyan

          Artyom Tonoyan

Your Hosts

          Hovik Manucharyan

          Asbed Bedrossian

Introduction

 

Hello, and welcome to the Armenian News Network, Groong, Week in Review for Sunday November 15, 2020. In this episode we continue to discuss various topics around the War in Artsakh. We’ll be talking to our guests about the following major topics:

      The war ends. What are the terms of the deal?

      Pax Russiana

      The extent of Turkey’s presence in Azerbaijan

      Jubilation in Baku

 

To talk about these issues, we have with us:

 

Asbed Kotchikian, a senior lecturer of political science and international relations at Bentley University in Massachusetts where he teaches courses on the Middle East and former Soviet space.

 

Emil Sanamyan, a senior research fellow at USC’s Institute of Armenian Studies specializing in politics in the Caucasus, with a special focus on Azerbaijan;

 

And

 

Artyom Tonoyan is a research associate at the University of Minnesota's Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, with specialties in religion and politics and nationalism in the South Caucasus, and Russia.

 

 

This episode was recorded on Saturday, November 15.

 

 

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Topic This Week: The War in Artsakh

The war ends. What are the terms of the deal?

36 hours after we recorded last week’s podcast, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia signed a joint statement to end the war.

Under the terms of the Russian-brokered deal, by December Armenian forces are to withdraw from three districts - Karvajar, Lachin and Agdam, - while Azerbaijan will keep the territory in Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas captured during the conflict.

Let’s talk about some of the points of the signed statement.

  1. A complete ceasefire and end to all hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict from 00:00 Moscow time on 10 November 2020. The Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia, hereinafter referred to as the parties stop at the current territorial positions they occupy.
  2. Agdam District returns to the Republic of Azerbaijan by 20 November 2020.
  3. Along the frontline in Nagorno-Karabakh and along the Lachin corridor there will be a peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation with 1960 military personnel with small arms, 90 armored personnel carriers, 380 military vehicles and other special equipment.
  4. The peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation is deployed in parallel with the withdrawal of the Armenian armed forces from Nagorno-Karabakh. The duration of the peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation is 5 years with automatic renewal for the next 5-year period if none of the parties state otherwise 6 months in advance.
  5. In order to improve the effectiveness of control over the implementation by the Parties to the conflict agreements, a peacekeeping command post is being installed in order to enforce the ceasefire.
  6. The Republic of Armenia will return to Azerbaijan the Kalbajar District by 15 November 2020, and the Lachin District by 1 December. The Lachin corridor (5 km (3.1 mi) wide) which will provide access from Nagorno-Karabakh to Armenia remains under the control of the peacekeeping contingent of the Russian Federation. The town of Shusha located within the corridor will remain in Azeri possession. By agreement of the Parties, a construction plan will be determined in the next three years for a new route of movement along the Lachin corridor, providing a link between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia with the subsequent redeployment of the Russian peacekeeping contingent to guard this route. The Republic of Azerbaijan guarantees the safety of traffic along the Lachin corridor of citizens, vehicles, and goods in both directions.
  7. Internally displaced persons and refugees return to the territories of Nagorno-Karabakh and adjacent areas under the control of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees.
  8. The exchange of prisoners of war, hostages and other detainees is to be made, as well as the remains of casualties.
  9. All economic activity and transport links in the region are to be unrestricted. The Republic of Armenia guarantees the safety of transport links between western regions of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic in order to organize the unimpeded movement of citizens, vehicles and cargo in both directions. Transport control is carried out by the bodies of the Border Service of the FSB of Russia. By agreement of the Parties, the construction of new infrastructure linking the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic with regions of Azerbaijan is to take place.

Pax Russiana

Putin’s nuanced political navigation throughout the Artsakh war may be paying off. Russia appears to have outmaneuvered Turkey as the sole non-warring signatory in the ceasefire document and says it will be the only power to send peacekeeping troops to the region, although Turkey and Azerbaijan are now arguing this point.

At least for now Russia has expanded its presence in Armenia, and now also in Azerbaijan. What’s their end game?

The extent of Turkey’s presence in Azerbaijan

What are the underlying “interests” that are driving the Turkey-Azerbaijan alliance right now?

Jubilation in Baku

No doubt that Ilham Aliyev is the biggest personal winner from the outcome of this war. By liberating the regions around Nagorno-Karabakh and imposing harsh conditions on Armenia, he managed to not only deliver on his decades long promise but also probably consolidated his dynastic rule for the foreseeable future.

Any thoughts about how this victory would impact Azerbaijan’s political orientation and future relations with Russia, Turkey and Iran?

 

Wrap-up

 

That concludes our program for This week’s Groong Week in Review. We hope it has helped you understand some of the current issues. We look forward to your feedback, and even your suggestions for issues to cover in greater depth. Contact us on our website, at groong.org, or on our Facebook PageANN - Groong”, or in our Facebook Group “Groong - Armenian News  Network.

 

 

Special thanks to Laura Osborn for providing the music for our podcast. I’m Hovik Manucharyan, and on behalf of everyone in this episode, I wish you a good week. Thank you for listening and we’ll talk to you next week.

 

Keywords

Armenia, Artsakh, Nagorno Karabakh, Azerbaijan, Iran, Turkey

Additional: Russia, Iran, Ceasefire, Aliyev, Pashinyan