Caucasus Reality 14 june — 12:23

Armenia is afraid of Turkish offensive through Nakhchivan (Our review)

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BY NAIR ALIYEV

Two contradictory trends at once have been outlined in Armenia. Simultaneously with discontent with the allies on the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO), which sell weapons to Azerbaijan, there are more and more frequent statements about the importance of the CSTO for Yerevan as a guarantor of protection from Turkey, which can attack Armenia from Nakhchivan.

But first things first. At the CSTO session, Armenian Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan made a statement accusing Azerbaijan of aggravating the situation, and on the border between Azerbaijan and Armenia at that, not only on the contact line in the occupied territories.

Zohrab Mnatsakanyan

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan reacted to this statement operatively. Spokesperson for the country's foreign affairs department Hikmet Hajiyev, noted that the Armenian Foreign Ministry is trying to hide the responsibility of Armenia as a party to the conflict.

But what does make Yerevan to appeal again to the CSTO, which in Armenia has long been considered almost hostile because of the position of Kazakhstan and Belarus?

It's all about the hysteria that has started with the threat to Armenia from Nakhchivan. As the Armenian media write, Turkey, with the permission of Azerbaijan, strengthens its presence in Nakhchivan. In parallel, Azerbaijan is advancing its military positions closer to the Armenian ones.

Azerbaijani Army in Nakhchivan

No matter how the Ministry of Defence tried to reassure the public, the Turkish-Azerbaijani tandem threatens Armenia from the territory of Nakhchivan. This was stated by the Leader of the Democrat Party of Armenia, Aram Sargsyan, reports Sputnik-Armenia.

According to the politician, the activity of Azerbaijan in Nakhchivan, the strengthening of military positions and the tightening of rhetoric indicate that Baku does not associate any hopes with the negotiation process around Karabakh.

'Negotiations can reach a deadlock, and against this background, preparations in Nakhchivan cannot but cause concern. The tasks of the Armenian diplomacy include active discussion of this topic with foreign partners. We need to play in advance, we must not allow the slightest inactivity,' Sargsyan said.

He is echoed by former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Arman Navasardyan, who believes that on the issue of Turkish-Azerbaijani activity in the Nakhchivan direction, Armenia should convene an international conference and find ways and mechanisms for 'preempting expansion.'

Political scientist Yervand Bozoyan, in turn, believes that the Armenian public looks at the regional situation through rose-coloured glasses, forgetting that the same Turkey in Syria was able to solve the Kurdish problem in its favour.

Having dealt with the Kurds in Afrin, Turkey is now launching a campaign in Manbij, without encountering any opposition from the leading powers. Now, when in fact Ankara and Baku threaten Armenia from Nakhchivan, Yerevan at all levels should raise this problem, simultaneously strengthening its army.

'We need to intensify cooperation with our strategic partners, we need to turn their eyes to the problem. The danger of the situation is also attached to the prospect of new Western sanctions against Iran. It seems to me that the anti-Iranian steps of the West can open the green light for Turkey in the region. You cannot allow this in any case,' Bozoyan is convinced.

Fear of Turkey makes Yerevan 'to raise this problem ... at all levels,' including the CSTO.

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