Wednesday, 07 December 2022

W Weekly Update

10-17 September

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Weekly update

 

17 September
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday said Moscow successfully mediated a conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan after recent clashes between the two neighbors resulted in the killings of more than 200 people.  According to benzinga.com Putin said despite its ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the country had enough resources to broker a deal between the former Soviet republics — Armenia and Azerbaijan— after the latest hostilities spiraled into the worst confrontation between the neighbors since a war in 2020. "Under the influence of Russia, this conflict was localized. I hope this continues to be the case," Putin told media after a regional summit in Uzbekistan, Reuters reported. Although Ilham Aliyev, the President of Azerbaijan, told Putin that the conflict had "stabilized," the Armenian parliamentary speaker Alen Simonyan said on national television, "We are very dissatisfied, of course. The expectations we had were not justified." "We expect more tangible steps from our Russian partners, not just statements or half words," he added.
https://www.benzinga.com/news/22/09/28905619/armenia-expresses-dissatisfaction-after-putin-mediated-azeri-armenian-conflict-we-expect-more-tangib

 

16 September
At least 108 Armenian monasteries, churches, and cemeteries in Nakhichevan have been demolished or blown up by the Azerbaijani government, according to the Caucasus Heritage Watch. In line with hyperallergic.com a yearlong investigation by a team of scholars affiliated with Cornell and Purdue universities has documented a pattern of deliberate obliteration of Armenian cultural heritage in Nakhichevan, a historically Armenian region that became part of Azerbaijan following the Sovietization of the republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan between 1920 and 1921. The new report by the Caucasus Heritage Watch (CHW) identified 108 medieval and early modern Armenian monasteries, churches, and cemeteries in Nakhichevan that were completely destroyed between 1997 and 2011 — an eradication described by the report’s authors as a “striking portrait of cultural erasure that, in its surgical precision, totality, and surreptitiousness, has few parallels.”
https://hyperallergic.com/761723/cultural-armenian-heritage-sites-in-nakhichevan-destroyed-by-azerbaijan/

 

15 September
Similar to defending Ukraine, Washington should take steps to prevent Turkic aggression against a sovereign state and strategic partner. According to nationalinterest.org President Joe Biden’s decision on April 24, 2021, to recognize the murder and expulsion of up to 1.5 million Armenians from Turkey as “genocide” was welcome and overdue. However, Secretary of State Antony Blinken gave a gift to Turkey’s brethren in Azerbaijan forty-eight hours later, issuing a national security waiver to Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act. Section 907 bans direct U.S. aid to the Azerbaijani government because of its aggression against Armenians. Biden and Blinken should have known better; appeasement does not work. Turkey and Azerbaijan have once again launched an unprovoked attack against Armenia. The New York Times noted, “For the first time in 30 years of a largely frozen conflict over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding districts, Azerbaijan attacked Armenian air defense and artillery systems based inside Armenia.” Heavy fire was reported inside Armenia, targeting civilian homes and infrastructure, despite Turkish and Azerbaijani denials and attempts to shift blame.
https://nationalinterest.org/feature/defending-armenia-turkic-aggression-204822

 

14 September
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian told his Azeri counterpart Jeyhun Bayramov on Wednesday afternoon that the Islamic Republic will not accept a change in its border with Armenia, reported tehrantimes.com. “We view the border of Iran with Armenia as a historic connection route that must remain unchanged,” Amir Abdollahian insisted in his phone call with Bayramov. The telephone conversation followed deadly border clashes between the Republic of Azerbaijan and Armenia that erupted on Monday night. Amir Abdollahian expressed Tehran’s great concern over the renewed clashes between the two Caucasian countries and said Iran is ready to mediate to settle the conflict peacefully and politically. Iran’s chief diplomat added, “We have always insisted on the protection of the territorial integrity of countries, including Azerbaijan and Armenia.” He also said the region cannot tolerate another war.
https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/476765/Iran-Armenia-border-must-remain-unchanged-Iran-tells-Azerbaijan

 

13 September
Armenia’s Ministry of Defense has confirmed that Armenia has suffered casualties as a result of Azerbaijani aggression in southern Armenia, although numbers are not currently available. According to civilnet.am shortly after midnight on Tuesday (late Monday evening), Azerbaijani forces began firing towards southern Armenian towns of Goris, Jermuk, Vardenis and Sotk, reports Armenian Defense Ministry spokesperson Aram Torosyan. Later in the night, Torosyan confirmed that the Armenian side has suffered casualties. Armine Simonyan, CivilNet’s correspondent in the southern town of Goris, said there were artillery shells landed in the vicinity of the town, causing a fire in the fields. As of 1:30am local time, Simonyan reported that the sounds of shelling can be heard in Goris. According to Armenia’s government, Azerbaijani forces are using artillery, large-calibre rifles and drones towards Armenian military positions and towns. The U.S. State Department updated its Armenia travel advisory on Monday, warning citizens not to travel to Karabakh and surrounding territories “due to recent hostilities.”
https://www.civilnet.am/en/news/674039/breaking-azerbaijan-shells-goris-and-other-towns-in-armenia/

 

12 September
Authorities in Stepanakert accused Azerbaijani forces of opening fire at two villages in Nagorno-Karabakh early on Monday amid signs of rising tensions in the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict zone. Karabakh’s human rights ombudsman, Gegham Stepanian, said the Armenian-populated villages of Karmir Shuka and Taghavard came under Azerbaijani fire that lasted for about 30 minutes. The automatic gunfire damaged three local houses but did not injure any of their civilian residents, he said. In a Facebook post, Stepanian portrayed the shooting as further proof of Baku’s continuing attempts to “terrorize people living in Artsakh and disrupt their normal life and activities.” Baku routinely ratchets up tension in the conflict zone in a bid to clinch major concessions from the Armenian side. Alen Simonian, the Armenian parliament speaker told reporters. “We always expect that there could be a provocation by the Azerbaijani side.”At the same time, Simonian dismissed suggestions that the mounting tensions are the result of an apparent lack of progress made by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev at their August 31 meeting in Brussels hosted by European Council President Charles Michel.
https://www.azatutyun.am/a/32030089.html

 

11 September
Armenia’s Investigative Committee (IC) Chairman Argishti Kyaramyan today met with thirty parents of Armenian servicemen killed in the 2020 Artsakh war and discussed the status of criminal investigations related to how the war was conducted. According to hetq.am last week, the IC indicted Lieutenant-General Arzumanyan of negligence that led to the Azerbaijani capture of Shushi in early November 2020. Arzumanyan assumed control of the Artsakh Defense Army when Commander Jalal Harutyunyan was seriously wounded in an Azerbaijani rocket strike during the war. The IC has also filed criminal negligence charges against Harutyunyan.
https://hetq.am/en/article/148070

 

10 September
A new nationwide poll in Armenia by the International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Center for Insights in Survey Research (CISR) shows concerns over national security and the border, favorable views of Prime Minister Pashinyan, and a desire for constitutional reform. According to iri.org when asked about the most important problem facing the country, 54% of Armenians responded with issues related to national security and the border, far outpacing other subjects.  “The conflict with Azerbaijan and recent developments in Nagorno-Karabakh continue to dominate the views of Armenians,” said Stephen Nix, Senior Director for Eurasia at IRI. “Our research makes it clear that people are very concerned over their own safety and security due to the volatility of the region.”  The survey also shows that 53% of Armenians now hold a favorable view of Prime Minister Pashinyan.
https://www.iri.org/news/iri-armenia-poll-shows-concerns-over-national-security-favorable-views-of-the-prime-minister-and-a-desire-for-constitutional-reform/

 

Sources: benzinga.com, hyperallergic.com, nationalinterest.org, tehrantimes.com, civilnet.am, azatutyun.am, hetq.am, iri.org

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