Month after aggravation day around Karabakh
The month that passed since the date of the next aggravation in the Karabakh conflict zone was taken by the participants and observers as a year: too many events have happened during this period of time, a lot of thins have changed. Now the mediators in the settlement continue to make pacifying statements, urging the parties of the conflict to de-escalate the situation and return to the peace process, but the Armenian armed forces continue to shell villages and positions of the Azerbaijani Army.
Nevertheless, during the three days of fighting the armed forces of Azerbaijan managed to dispel the myth of impregnable layered ‘Ohanyan’s defense line’ – ‘the security zone’ in the seven occupied regions of Azerbaijan, which are not a part of Nagorno-Karabakh. Those positions of the Armenian army in the north of Karabakh had a strategic importance. They were named the ‘Ohanyan's line’ by analogy with the ‘Mannerheim line’ because of their importance to continue to capture Karabakh.
It should be noted that the territory of the occupied regions around the Nagorno Karabakh area is larger than the disputed territory. But today Yerevan intends to retain two of the occupied regions in order to maintain the connection of Karabakh with "the mainland". It is no secret that Nagorno-Karabakh is far from the borders of Armenia, locating in the central part of Azerbaijan behind Lachin and Kelbajar. Armenia wants to keep its control over the Azerbaijani territory, connecting it [Armenia] with Nagorno-Karabakh.
Experts believe that the key event of the military aggravation period was the fact that during three days of fighting, despite losses in the 400-meter mined transition area, the Armed Forces of Azerbaijan managed to break the defensive line and enter the territory of those areas. Moreover, the effect of the destruction of the ‘safety zone’ was so unexpected for the population of Nagorno Karabakh that it decided to escape at once. There are no people in Martakert (Agder) in the north of Karabakh, located 62 kilometers from the main administrative town of Stepanakert (Khankendi). More than 8,325 people lived there in 1989, in 2005 – 4214 people, and nobody now. Think over the statistics.
Seyran Ohanyan, who gave the name to ‘the impregnable line’, held the post of defense minister of the unrecognized NKR, and then he became Defense Minister of Armenia. Azerbaijani troops broke the line during a few hours and ruined the enemy’s game. Experts predicted that during a few days of fighting the front would be destroyed and the Azerbaijani army would put an end to the occupation of Karabakh.
Only the fact that Russian President Vladimir Putin urged the leadership of both countries to stop the war changed that situation. Understanding the possible consequences of continued conflict, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev ordered regular well-armed Azerbaijani army to stop fights. The Azerbaijani army was supported by several million volunteers who were willing to participate in the liberation of their homeland from the Armenian Armed Forces Thus, President Aliyev proved that he was committed to resolve the conflict in a peaceful way.
On the other hand, when Ilham Aliyev agreed to a cease-fire he proved the fact that Azerbaijan has a respectful and confidential attitude towards President of Russia as the credible person who can contribute to the peaceful solution of the conflict.
Armenia begins to realize that if they create the second Armenian state in the Azerbaijani land, the fate of the people, living there is unlikely to be in the interests of official Yerevan. In April the Armenian army lost 114 military and another 140 were wounded. Now very few people trust the leadership of the war party: neither mothers who forced to send their sons to the front, nor foreign observers. What’s relation to the politics of power-holders after the chairman of the Union of volunteers ‘Yerkrapah’, former Deputy Defense Minister Manvel Grigorian publicly recognized that during four years he held Azerbaijani captive as a slave? Do you think that he was arrested and convicted? No, he is alive and continues to recruit helpless old people to join the army.
From the very beginning of negotiations on the settlement of the Karabakh conflict conditions were dictated by the Armenian side, as the winner. However, Armenia has failed to bring the war to a victorious finish. The war ended with an agreement and the interim victory was lost during the past decades. Unwise foreign and domestic policy has led to a weakening of Yerevan's position in the negotiation process.
The loss of Karabakh for Armenia's leaders who came to power on the Karabakh wave of nationalism means to lose its power and the respect in the eyes of the world Armenians. No one believes in the revival of ‘Great Armenia’, but it is becoming more difficult for Yerevan to keep the status quo at least. Experts agree that the events at the beginning of April on the frontline proved once again that Azerbaijan can solve the problem with the help of non-peaceful means. However, the position of Baku is based on the fact that there are still opportunities for peaceful settlement of the conflict in accordance with the principle of the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan in the context of the international law. Authoritative international organizations and individual countries should make greater efforts to normalize the situation to achieve this goal.