BY EYNULLA FATULLAYEV
The other day, Maria Vladimirovna Zakharova touched upon the case of the new sufferer, Alexander Lapshin. Zakharova, answering a question about the fate of the blogger, who has a very mediate and conditional relation to Russia, openly stated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs holds this issue under control.
For Russia, Lapshin is not a sufferer. Russian foreign policy doctrine excludes the right to interfere in the internal affairs of other states under the auspices of upholding liberal freedoms. This is not the niche of the Russian Foreign Ministry, which condemns the U.S. State Department and foreign policy institutions of the West, and treatd the protection of liberal freedoms in other countries as a flagrant violation of the sovereign right of a self-sufficient state. That is why the frequent statements of Maria Vladimirovna around the fate of the punished blogger causes bewilderment in Baku.
Lapshin is not repressed, but punished according to law. This axiom also comes from the political philosophy of the current Kremlin. Official Baku, too, adheres to this value system, and parries the biased and often inappropriate statements that were distributed from across the ocean. Why were? But because the new Trump administration rejected the previous theory of global domination by the United States, which had once declared absolute authority to intervene in the affairs of subjects of international law based on the interests of world liberalism. Trump said and assured that from now on such statements would no longer be.
But Maria Vladimirovna probably interprets care for blogger Lapshin, who has transgressed the laws of another country, with his Russian passport. Lapshin, though he was appearing in Russia only occasionally, still is a citizen of this country. But Lapshin has also other passports. He has an Israeli passport, and even an Ukrainian one! But neither Israel, nor Ukraine are as concenred, as Maria Vladimirovna is, for the fate of their citizen, who has chosen as his target the whole country.
But can Russia, say, in contrast to Israel or Ukraine, uncompromisingly and resolutely fight for all its citizens? Well, it is commendable and worthy of a great power!
Perhaps in Azerbaijan they would have reacted that way to the meticulous approach of Maria Vladimirovna and the Russian Foreign Ministry, in general, if not for one big 'but,' which isolated the cases of other citizens of Russia, who demand the same approach as the Lapshin case. For example, let's take the case of another Russian citizen, Dilgam Askerov.
The case of the Karabakh captive, Dilgam Askerov almost does not differ from the misery and suffering of Lapshin. The only difference is that Askerov is not a blogger, and does not carry passports of other countries in his pockets. He only has a passport of one country - Russia. What is the fault of Askerov? He also, as Lapshin visited the territories occupied by Armenia. However, if Lapshin did violate the laws of Azerbaijan, illegally entering the territory of the country, Askerov was on the territory of Azerbaijan legally and had every right to move freely inside the country.
By origin Askerov is from the Kalbajar region of Azerbaijan, annexed by the Armenians, and he could not cope with feelings and thoughts about the lands of his ancestors. Not having receded to the danger and possibly death, he made his way through invisible narrow mountain paths deep into Karabakh. Perhaps, the act was unreasonable and adventurous. But Askerov did not commit crimes! And the separatist authorities arrested him and sentenced him to life imprisonment, in addition to accusing him of espionage. Whom did Askerov spy upon making his way to the graves of his ancestors through the mountains and forests? And what can you find and see in the uninhabited Kalbajar?
Perhaps, according to the logic of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Lapshin did not commit crimes. But in this case you can ask: how does Lapshin's action differ from the brave and fearless exploit of Askerov? Moreover, Lapshin is not associated in any way with Karabakh, while Askerov has all ties and past connected with this land, in which his ancestors are buried and the blood of compatriots is shed.
Maria Vladimirovna firmly declares that the Lapshin case is under the control of the Russian Foreign Ministry. Let me ask - why is the case of another Russian citizen Askerov not under the control of the foreign policy department? What kind of selective approach is this! Why is it that what Lapshin is allowed from the Russian point of view is not allowed to Askerov! Why Lapshin can take advantage of the new liberal boundless world, and the act of Askerov qualifies as espionage?
Who asked for Lapshin? Armenia? Neither Israel, nor Ukraine shows such deep interest in the fate of their citizen. The noise was only in Yerevan. For another Russian citizen, Dilgam Askerov, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev interceded. Two years ago, at the August meeting in Sochi of three presidents, President Ilham Aliyev in the presence of Serzh Sargsyan handed the petition of the Russian citizen's family to President Vladimir Putin.
Repeatedly Askerov's question was raised by Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov at his meetings with Minister Sergey Lavrov. Alas, to this day we have not heard from the lips of Maria Vladimirovna even the duty phrase about concern for the fate and future of their citizen. Lapshin is held in a lawful prison of the penitentiary system, meets with lawyers, uses telephone rights, communicates with family members, but where Askerov is being hidden is another big question!
In the case of Askerov, a violation of at least two articles of the European Convention was recorded. His fundamental right to liberty and the right to a fair trial were violated. If Lapshin was arrested by a law court, Askerov was lynched by paramilitary quasi-judicial instances unrecognized by the world community. And this is in direct contradiction with the Geneva Conventions, for which the Russian Foreign Ministry stands up.
A rather disappointing summary for Azerbaijan suggests itself: the Russian Foreign Ministry is guided by the notorious double standards, in which it constantly accuses the West and the United States. So, if Askerov was not an Azerbaijani by ethnicity, he could have counted on the high support and special attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of his country! In addition, Lapshin's advantage lies in the fact that he left notes in his network blog, while Askerov wrote poetry in his writing pad. In response to criticism of the West, Russia has always stated - we try our citizens not for professional activities, but for specific crimes. So what is the difference of Askerov's 'crime' from that of Lapshin?
And after this selective approach, the Russian authorities offer the people born in the USSR to receive Russian citizenship and get Russian passports with a double-headed eagle?
Who will believe and accept it after Russia left its own innocent and captive citizen to the mercy of fate? But I do not dare to answer this question, dear Maria Vladimirovna...