Our Analytics 19 july — 12:09

Maybe Kremlin should turn round? After all, Minasyan and Dzhagaryan are there! (Our editorial)

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BY EYNULLA FATULLAYEV

There is a falling-out between the allies. Although after the son-in-law of the head of the official Yerevan, Mikael Minasyan's secret diplomacy, whose camouflage veil has now finally fallen, you can call Moscow and Yerevan reliable allies only at a stretch. No sooner had the Sargsyan clan in Brussels stabbed in the very heart of the Kremlin, as far away in Tehran the protege and fellow countryman of another prominent Russian diplomat, Mr Lavrov, Russia's Ambassador to Iran, Levan Semenovich Dzhagaryan questioned the future of the child of Vladimir Putin himself - the transport corridor 'North-South.'

Levan Dzhagaryan

Just like in Brussels, where a diplomat representing Armenia threatened the inviolability of imperial rights and interests, in Tehran, an Armenian diplomat was trying to disrupt Putin's geostrategic project. Albeit that diplomat represents Russia. It's not about the Armenian ambassador, but about the Russia one! Levan Dzhagaryan is a career diplomat, who has for a long time headed the CIS Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry. So, it is unlikely that he would have without the appropriate directives categorically scattered words at meetings and events with representatives of foreign diplomatic missions, informing everyone of Russia's absolute disinterest in the implementation of the North-South project with the participation of Azerbaijan. And along the way to convince the audience of the priority of the long forgotten and safely buried railway artery from Iran to Armenia.

But if the big betrayal in Brussels is directed against the interests of the Kremlin, and this is the headache of Moscow alone, which each time has to stumble upon the inconstancy of its geopolitical outpost, then the torpedoing of the North-South project directly affects the geo-economic prospects of Azerbaijan. Although still in the first place it is a blow to the interests of Russia itself.

How can it be otherwise, if the international transport corridor North-South with a length of approximately 5.6 thousand kilometres is designed to provide transport and communication links through Azerbaijan both bewteen Iran and Russia, and the Baltic states and India. Specifically, in order to get or to transfer cargo from the Russian territory by land or sea to the most southern point of India, the port of Mumbai, one will need only 14 days. The new route cuts twice the traditional corridor's length through the Suez Canal.

Almost a year ago, at the summit of the three presidents of Azerbaijan, Russia and Iran, convened in Baku on the initiative of President Ilham Aliyev, the question of building the western branch of the international corridor was discussed in great detail.

This was stated by President Vladimir Putin in his speech on the results of the summit in Baku on August 8, 2016: 'The project, the international transport corridor North-South is important for us, it is the flagship project for the big Caucasian trio. It will connect India, Iran, the Persian Gulf countries with Azerbaijan and Russia, and then provide access to Europe. The Russian Railways are ready to become operator of the construction of the missing link - 172 km between Iran and Azerbaijan.'

Rouhani, Aliyev, Putin, Baku, August 2016

Of course, it is absurd to compare the possibilities of the North-South project with the reincarnation of the idea of laying a railway between Iran and Armenia, especially considering the political conflict between Russia and Georgia. Another thing is that the use of multimodal cargo transportation is in the interests of Iran and Armenia. But the international corridor must pass through Georgia to Russia: so, how can it be implemented without a political settlement of Georgia's territorial problems? The question is far from idle, but, apparently, not for Ambassador Dzhagaryan, who most likely was guided by one goal - to hint to the Iranians that Moscow is not particularly interested in the corridor through Azerbaijan. Interesting, is this the opinion of the ambassador himself or the Russian Foreign Ministry? And in general one is curious, how will the Foreign Ministry of Russia react to this?

It seems that the intrigues of the ambassador are more in line with the interests of Armenia, in relation to which Azerbaijan has chosen a strategy of isolationism. Through the efforts of official Baku, expansionist Armenia found itself outside the most important strategic regional projects.

Armenian political elite realises that soon both the East-West corridor (currently ten and a half millions tonnes of cargo are transported annually through the East-West line) and the North-South (at the initial stage of its operation a level of 3-5 million tonnes is expected) will turn Azerbaijan into the central and largest transport and logistics hub, providing multi-billion dollar preferences to the transit country. Azerbaijan acts as the central point with the beginning of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway project too, and after the completion of the construction of the Astara-Rasht railway section in the future Baku will connect the two international transport corridors.

These are the global and grandiose projects that link the leading regional and world actors with Azerbaijan, which will undoubtedly strengthen and enhance the political role of the largest country in the Caucasus.

Who, if not Armenia, which has imposed an ethnopolitical conflict on Azerbaijan, needs to direct all efforts to struggle with these projects?

It's just that for some reason, some Russian ambassadors and diplomats act as servants of the expansionist state in this mission. It is curious how will this be looked at in the Kremlin and the government of Russia?

Although over the past year this question has been increasingly addressed by Azerbaijan to the Kremlin. Increasingly, more and more representatives of the Armenian diaspora in Moscow, as well as ethnic Armenians represented in the institutions of state power, for the sake of Armenia's policy and against the Russian-Azerbaijani strategic partnership, are plotting against official Baku. In this forefront, many ethnic Armenians, owners and heads of media in the persons of the notorious Aram Gabrelyan, Margarita Simonyan, Artur Dzhanibekyan, have succeeded more than ever before... Paradoxically, during the recent aggravation of hostilities in Karabakh, targeted shelling of a peaceful village in the Fuzuli region occupied by the Armenians, leading to the death of a two-year-old girl and an elderly woman, injuring other civilians, the press service of the Russian Foreign Ministry is not condoning and condemning the despicable inhuman act of intimidation, but makes unprecedented in nature and mocking in its content statement calling the official Baku to remove restrictions on the movement of Armenians to Azerbaijan!

As if the authors of this statement intentionally warm up the protest public mood in Azerbaijan, try to provoke aggression and dislike, spiritual rejection from Russia. Was it a diplomatic mistake, an oversight, or a premeditated calumny prepared in the offices with a twisted web of insinuations?

Most likely, this is another treacherous blow to the Russian-Azerbaijani partnership and alliance, to Russia's interests in the South Caucasus. Just as in a secluded place in Brussels or Tehran, Minasyan or Dzhagaryan undermine the joint projects of Presidents Putin and Aliyev. It is inconceivable, but this treacherous battle takes place with the approval of some political centres in Moscow. After all, they attack not only the interests of Azerbaijan, they are attacking the Kremlin!

Union of Armenians of Russia

Secret diplomacy of Sargsyan's son-in-law and the intricacies of Ambassador Dzhagaryan in Tehran, as well as the frequent inappropriate statements of the Russian Foreign Ministry, are some episodes of a large-scale dirty campaign that the Russian Armenians are waging against Azerbaijan. If there is a clear falling-out between Russia and Armenia, then for the first time in a quarter-century of diplomatic relations there appeared problems between Azerbaijan and Russia through the fault of the Russian Armenians. Russian Armenians, such as Dzhagaryan, easily sacrifice the interests and values of Russian statehood on the altar of the 'great Armenian idea.'

Today, Russian-Azerbaijani relations became hostage to the aggression of the Russian Armenians. One wonders, which other country will tomorrow become a target of the 'great idea' of the Russian Armenianship?

At the same time, in the middle of the night, the doors of Russian patriots-Azerbaijanis, united in a single diasporal organisation - the All-Russian Azerbaijani Congress, are being pinned up. They block the way for those Russian citizens, who together with the Russian patriots are throwing all their forces to strengthen the Russian-Azerbaijani alliance.

Something is not going right in Russia! Something is wrong with Russia! Sargsyan's son-in-law, Ambassador Minasyan urges the EU to withdraw Armenia from the influence of the 'Russian world,' and Russia's Ambassador Dzhagaryan undermines Vladimir Putin's personal project; Armenian journalists on the pages of Russian media create the worst image of hostile Azerbaijan, while Russian-Armenian officials knock out Russian patriots-Azerbaijanis from the information political field... And all this is happening near the Kremlin. Maybe it's worth turning round and seeing what happens right next to you?

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