• Հայերեն
  • Русский
  • English


NEW CHALLENGES OF OLD THREATSInterview with Grigory Ayvazyan, Candidate of Historical Sciences, expert in Azeri studies, President of the Assembly of Azerbaijani Refugee Armenians, NGO.


– Mr. Ayvazyan, you are from Baku. You came to Armenia after the massacres of Armenians in Baku and Sumgait. What happened, what were the main motives for starting the war?

– In my opinion, in fact, the causal link between the Karabakh conflict has not been clearly presented to the international community during these thirty years. From the beginning, it was not only a struggle for freedom, independence or self-determination, but also a movement against genocide. In other words, Artsakh, the Armenians of Artsakh, had no alternative after the genocide against the Armenians in Azerbaijan. He should have tried to defend himself with weapons so as not to suffer the sad fate of the Azerbaijani-Armenians.

– What were the signs in those days that everything led to that?

– The genocide committed in Azerbaijan is the best proof of the impossibility of peaceful coexistence of Azerbaijani Turks and Artsakhis within one state. It was necessary to present the problem from this point of view. This is an understandable fact for us, but in order to be perceptible to the world community, this is exactly the wording of the question. This is the same as the Kosovo issue. Unfortunately, this was not done. The fact that more than 500,000 Azerbaijani-Armenian refugees were in the hands of the two Armenian states could be a shield against Azerbaijani falsification. This issue should have been put on the negotiating table, at least in order to neutralize the issue of the so-called unilateral return of “Azerbaijani refugees”. Unfortunately, this has not been done either; we have missed many opportunities, and this has led to both the April war and this latest war. What we are seeing now is a consequence of the fact that we have not been able to present our simple truth to the world community in accessible language. And, of course, the Artsakh Republic should have been recognized. The opportunity was great both during the April war and during this war. There was a direct or indirect question from Russia, France and other co-chairs. “If Armenia has not recognized yet, why should we recognize it first?”

NEW CHALLENGES OF OLD THREATSYes, from 1988 to 1992, the Azerbaijani leadership violated the unwritten “treaty” of peaceful coexistence that existed between the Azerbaijani-Armenians and the Azeri Turks and began to commit genocidal acts against its civilians. Azerbaijani-Armenians had to leave their historical lands. We were not migrants in those lands, but natives, we lived in our historical, field Karabakh, that is, Utik, Gardman, Artsakh itself. The roots of the Artsakh Armenians in all these places are deep and ancient. Moreover, the Republic of Azerbaijan was established in 1918 at the bloody cost of the Turkish invasion of Transcaucasia and the massacres of Armenians and other indigenous peoples. The Azerbaijani nation did not exist as such. The notion of Azerbaijan would be more correct to formulate as citizenship than as ethnicity. The term “Azerbaijani” came into circulation in 1936, when the amendments to the Soviet constitution gave rise to the imperative of having a title-bearing nation in each Soviet republic. It turned out that such a nation did not exist in Azerbaijan, which numbered more than one million, «mechanically renamed the” Azerbaijani Turks “became the title-bearing nation of this republic. It should be remembered that from the beginning the leadership of Soviet Azerbaijan consisted mainly of Armenians and Jews. I can list the Bolshevik Armenians who played a significant role in the creation and establishment of the Azerbaijani SSR. Among the Armenian Bolshevik leaders, for example, Anastas Mikoyan, Ruben Rubenov, Mirzoyan and others, who made a great contribution to this work. And these were still only the Armenian leaders, not to mention the leaders of other Jewish nationalities. But over time, and especially after the coming to power of Heydar Ali, Armenians regularly began to be removed from all possible positions. And we got to where we are now.

– Now the Azeris are carrying out incomprehensible actions of arbitrary demarcation and delimitation, going around with maps of some dubious origin.

– Both the Constitution of Azerbaijan and the Declaration of Independence state that Russia has occupied Azerbaijan. When it comes to demarcation, we do not mean that when Azerbaijan adopted the Declaration of Independence, it renounced the legal successor of Soviet Azerbaijan, including the Soviet borders, which they are currently guided by in organizing this process. But it was during the Soviet era that Nakhichevan and Artsakh became part of Azerbaijan. And even there there is a contradiction, because the decision states that autonomy should be granted to the entire territory of Nagorno Karabakh, including the now occupied Karvachar, Berdzor and the southern part of Azerbaijan. The center of Artsakh should have been Shushi, not Stepanakert: Then in 1923 Azerbaijan decided that autonomy would be granted to the Armenian-populated territories of Nagorno-Karabakh. But the fact is that Azerbaijan has given up even that. And now these maps are completely illegitimate even from the point of view of the Azerbaijani Constitution and legislation, as they have been rejected by force of law. It is known why they refused to be legal successors. The first is not to compensate for the material, territorial and moral damage suffered by the Azerbaijani-Armenians. And secondly, to claim the so-called First Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan (1918-1920), the borders of which were not recognized by anyone, but its leadership, however, sent its ambitions to the Paris Peace Conference, according to which Azerbaijan included the former Baku-Elizavetpol The states, the territory of present-day Nakhichevan, a significant part of present-day Ararat marz of Armenia, a significant part of Armavir marz, the whole of Kars marz (it also had ambitions for territories in Turkey), the Batumi region with the city of Batumi, not to mention the territorial claims of Tabriz to Northern Iran. Let me say that Azerbaijan also has territorial claims to Russia. Requires the city of Derbent and South Dagestan. It is written in their textbooks that they are all ancient Azerbaijani lands.

NEW CHALLENGES OF OLD THREATS– Let’s talk about the results and consequences of the last war.

– In my opinion, Turkey and Azerbaijan have actually lost the last 44 days of war, as they have allowed their age-old enemy, Russia, to secure its presence in the conflict zone. In addition, Russia has warned at the highest level, at the level of President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, that it will not tolerate provocation against Russian peacekeepers. Putin brought two examples. The first is the version of Abkhazia-Ossetia, which will recognize the independence of Artsakh; the second option is the version of Crimea. Russia will recognize independence, and if they then apply to Russia to join Russia, they will seriously consider it. So, it is too early for the Azerbaijani side to celebrate victory. At the moment, threatening a new war, the Azerbaijani side is trying to play on the nerves of our Armenians. In fact, the military backbone of Azerbaijan was broken during this war. According to various international military experts, the losses of the Azerbaijani army, in contrast to the officially announced figures of 2896 casualties, are about 15-20000.

By the way, their victims were mainly from the military elite, as they say, the officer corps, the special forces. So it will take years to make up for this loss. According to various estimates, about 75% of Azerbaijani tanks and other military equipment were destroyed in hostilities. Yes, they are trying to recruit now, but as we can see, one of their suppliers, Israel, is now dealing with other issues. Their ally Turkey is now at least trying to diplomatically “bite” their other ally, Israel, so the Middle East is now in flames. Without wasting time, Azerbaijan is trying to warm its hands by inciting anti-Armenian sentiments in our ally Russia. For example, their officials in Russia often say that there is a cult of fascism in Armenia. In general, Azerbaijan has a strategy of attributing all their “monopolies” to others. In a telephone conversation with Lavrov, Ceyhun Bayramov reminded of the burning of a statue of Gandhi in Yerevan. But they forget, or rather try to hide in this way, to make the world forget that one of the founders of Azerbaijan, Rasul Zade, was an ideologue of Adolf Hitler and one of the founders of the Azerbaijani legion in the Nazi army. The Nazi Azeri legion was twice as large as the Armenian one. They try to present our national hero Garegin Nzhdeh as a fascist, while in Armenia Nzhdeh is first of all praised for the fact that he did his best to keep Syunik within Armenia. And it cooperated with the fascist regime only for one reason, in order to neutralize the false information with which Turkey tried to present the Armenian refugees who escaped the genocide as people of Jewish origin, to annihilate them at the hands of German fascism. The Armenian emigration had no choice but to try to cooperate with those forces at least to some extent in order to save the lives of Armenian refugees in Europe from German gas chambers. It was, in fact, Garegin Nzhdeh’s “fascist collaboration.”

They also speculate on the issue of terrorism, claiming that the first terrorist attack in the Soviet Union was carried out by Armenians in Moscow. But they are trying to forget that the first major terrorist act in the territory of the Soviet Union was committed by Chingiz Rzan, a military terrorist of Azerbaijani descent from the Russian army! He died in 1973. blew up a Soviet plane, killing about 100 people. He tried to direct the plane to China. (Recently, our partner Aram Khachaturyan published an article about this). We should talk about this a lot, because it is AzerbaijaniThe happy propaganda machine always points its fingers at Armenians and Armenia to cover up its weakest points.

NEW CHALLENGES OF OLD THREATSToday, Ali does not tire of repeating every day that the issue of the Karabakh conflict is a closed page. He says they should look to the future while bragging about Zangezur. But Russia also clearly states that the status issue is not closed, that the Russian peacekeeping forces are the guarantor of the security of the people of Artsakh. As for the Zangezur corridor here in Yerevan, Lavrov pointed out that this issue can be solved only by opening mutual communications. that there can be no coercion in this matter. And in response, Azerbaijan in another attack of racist-fascist fury, used this provocation that we now see in Syunik, Gegharkunik region. The Ali regime is trying to spread false rumors that Stepanakert should be handed over to Azerbaijan in September. The leader of the so-called “Azerbaijani community of Karabakh” tells tales that their refugees will be transferred to Stepanakert. This is in the case when Shushi has been under Azerbaijani occupation for some time, no Azeri “refugee” is in a hurry to move to Shushi. Baku is a very convenient refuge for them, it is impossible to eradicate them from there.

I am sure that it is not too late to recognize the independence of Nagorno Karabakh. By doing so, we can avoid the Azerbaijani speculations that they should turn against us for war crimes, the occupation of Artsakh, the exploitation of its entrails, and so on. Yes, we must recognize, at least as the only country that recognizes Artsakh, legalize our economic and military assistance, in the same way that Turkey recognized Northern Cyprus, or as the majority of Europe and the world recognized Kosovo’s independence. At least with that we will be able to neutralize the threats to our state. It is not too late now, as the de facto Minsk Group has collapsed, Russia has taken the lead, the United States and France have no choice but to recognize this process. Russia will not mind either, as it has repeatedly said and sent a message at the level of “foreign minister” and “president”. “But he did not recognize Armenia, did he?” If he had known, other negotiations would have taken place. Putin has repeatedly stated that the Karabakh conflict is of ethnic rather than territorial origin. And it started with the Sumgait and Baku massacres, in fact, with the genocide. Unfortunately, our side did not emphasize that, and at this moment, the issue again seems to be in the 10th place. In my opinion, this is the correct presentation of the problem of the Artsakh Armenians, the correct interpretation – the key to the solution.


To be continued

Category: #22 (1393) 9.06.2021 - 15.06.2021, News, Spotlight, Military-Political