In the past two weeks since our last Week-in-Review show, the state of Armenian Azerbaijani negotiations appears to shift on a daily basis.
At this point it’s clear that Aliyev thinks he’s gotten the maximum out of western mediation so he’s now trying to shift the negotiations either to a direct format with Armenia, or one mediated through some regional player.
This past week Armenia forwarded its latest draft proposal in the talks, and indicated it is willing to continue negotiating with Azerbaijan, and deputy Prime Ministers Mher Grigoryan and Shahin Mustafaev met “on the border” (Kazakh and Ijevan districts) for discussions on border delimitation.
Azerbaijan has now excluded both France and the US from acting as mediators. There have been more direct remarks from EU and US diplomats that point to Azerbaijan as the party that’s stalling, or not keeping up its end of the bargain, while Azerbaijan continues to ignore their advances. At a glance it would seem that this puts Azerbaijan in Russia’s camp.
Azerbaijan has signed some agreements with Iran to connect through its territory with Nakhichevan, and Aliyev has said he has no further interest in his so-called “Zangezur corridor”. But Turkey continues to demand that Armenia open a Zangezur corridor.
Meanwhile Pashinyan’s team is telling everyone who’ll listen about his so-called “Crossroads of Peace” plan. It’s basically 2-4 roads crossing Armenia and connecting Azerbaijan with Turkey. Pashinyan has also complained that the plan is stalled because Aliyev is not interested in it.
Over the past week Ararat Mirzoyan was in Skopje, North Macedonia, for an OSCE meeting. He met with Anthony Blinken, Lavrov, Josep Borrell, and many FMs from the EU countries. He did not meet with Azerbaijan’s Jeyhun Bayramov, who was also attending.
Meanwhile, Armen Grigoryan is currently in Washington DC.
The relations between Armenia and Russia remain icy. Pashinyan, Armen Grigoryan, and Alen Simonyan have recently skipped CSTO meetings, but there’s a combined CIS and EAEU summit coming up in St. Petersburg in December and Russia says they expect Pashinyan will attend.
We hope you found our Week in Review helpful. We invite your feedback and your suggestions, you can find us on most social media and podcast platforms. Thanks to Laura Osborn for the music on our podcasts.
Dr. Benyamin Poghosyan is a senior fellow at APRI Armenia, a Yerevan based think tank,and the Chairman of the Center for Political and Economic Strategic Studies. He has served as the vice president for research and head of the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense Research University in Armenia. Dr. Poghosyan was a Distinguished Research Fellow at the US National Defense University College of International Security Affairs. He is a graduate from the US State Department Study of the US Institutes for Scholars 2012 Program on US National Security Policy Making. He holds a PhD in history and is a graduate from the 2006 Tavitian Program on International Relations at Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.
Hovik Manucharyan is an information security engineer who moved from Seattle to Armenia in 2022. He co-founded the ANN/Groong podcast in 2020 and has been a contributor to Groong News since the late 1990s.
Asbed is founder of the Armenian News Network Groong and co-founder of the ANN/Groong podcast.