"The Karabakh Conflict in the Context of Political Processes in Armenia and Azerbaijan - 2018"

31 May, 2018

On May 22-23 an online conference "The Karabakh Conflict in the Context of Political Processes in Armenia and Azerbaijan - 2018" was held on the Public Dialogues website.
The conference was organized within the framework of the “Public Dialogues for Communication between Armenian and Azerbaijani Specialists” project, implemented by the Region Research Center.

The project partner is the Institute for Peace and Democracy (the Netherlands). The "Public Dialogues" website was created in 2012 by the Region Research Center and the Institute for Peace and Democracy which operated in Azerbaijan at the time.

The project is supported by the Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation, German Marshall Fund.

The conference was attended by:

Manvel Sargsyan (Armenia) - Director of Scientific Programmes of the Armenian Center for Strategic and National Studies (ACSNS)

Arif Yunusov (Azerbaijan) – Conflict studies specialist at the Institute for Peace and Democracy

Gela Vasadze (Georgia) - analyst at Caucasus Institute for Strategic Studies

Sergey Markedonov (Russia) - Associate Professor at Russian State U niversity for Humanities (RSUH)

The conference was moderated by Laura Baghdasaryan (Armenia) - Director of Region Research Center

(The complete texts of conference materials are available at http://www.publicdialogues.info/node/774)

On how the events will develop after the statements made by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, on the necessity for Nagorno-Karabakh to participate in the negotiations as a party to the conflict, and on the point that no meaningful negotiations can be pursued unless Azerbaijan puts an end to its bellicose rhetoric and trust is built by the parties.

Gela Vasadze - I do not think that the initiative of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia is aimed at the reaction of Azerbaijani authorities or any other external players such as members of the OSCE Minsk Group, for example. It was more like a statement intended for the internal audience as a certain signal to the Armenian society that the actions of the ex-authorities undertaken even for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution were, from the perspective of the interests of Armenia, far from being ideal. The fact thatno active hostilities are now conducted in Nagorno-Karabakh does not mean there is no war. The tactics of Baku in this war is quite clear. The changes in the military and political atmosphere, which due to the recent deformity towards exacerbations is an instrument for waging a war.

Sergey Markedonov - That is why I do not think that Pashinyan's idea will be welcomed in Mosow, Paris and Washington, we are not talking about Baku since the matters here are more or less obvious. Meanwhile, his idea about the involvement of Nagorno-Karabakh has stirred up discussions within Armenian circles. Ex-Minister of Defense (and formerly Ex-Chief of the RA President’s Staff) Vigen Sargsyan, the first and second Presidents of the Republic of Armenia Levon Ter-Petrosyan and Robert Kocharyanhave already “come into the spotlight” in these discussions. An important detail to note here is that they argue about who is a greater patriot of Armenia, who defended national interests and the cause of Karabakh in a better,

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