On March 27, there was another proposal to hold a meeting in the first week of April in Baku to discuss the aforementioned issues. Alas, a categorical refusal followed in both cases.
Thus, the leadership of the remnants of the bandit formations, rejecting the Baku proposal, repeated its earlier position: there can be no talk of any reintegration of the Karabakh Armenians into Azerbaijani society and the state. They say that we are ready to meet with representatives of Azerbaijan only through the mediation of the Russian Peacekeeping Contingent (RPC) in Khojaly, and we will discuss only issues “related to the smooth operation of the Lachin corridor”. And in general, “we don’t see ourselves as a part of Azerbaijan and will continue the fight for independence”.
One does not have to be a genius not to see that Azerbaijan has shown wisdom and a constructive approach by once again inviting representatives of the Karabakh Armenians to Baku to discuss reintegration and infrastructure restoration. However, the Armenians’ refusal and reliance on the RPC show that the top of the Karabakh separatists, on the one hand, still dream of “miatsum” and, on the other hand, are not independent and cannot make a step without the RPC.
It is quite obvious that adhering to its position, the Azerbaijani side fulfills the tasks of normalising relations with Armenia, as well as trying to establish direct contacts with the Karabakh Armenians. Let us remind that the framework of this position in Munich was clearly outlined by President Aliyev. Namely, the negotiations on a peace agreement between Armenia and Azerbaijan and contacts with citizens of Armenian nationality living in the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan are two completely separate issues.
However, neither Yerevan demonstrates constructivism in terms of signing a peace treaty, nor the leaders of the Karabakh Armenians who refuse Baku’s invitation. It is the elite, because, as Caliber.Az has already reported, more and more ordinary Armenians of Karabakh are realising that their so-called “leaders” are leading them to death, refusing to contact and dialogue with Baku. Therefore, any attempts by ordinary Armenians in Karabakh to make contact with the official structures of Azerbaijan results in reprisals. This happened recently, when two local Armenians were arrested in the “gray zone” of the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan on charges of “high treason”. They “allegedly established contacts with representatives of the special services of Azerbaijan and passed them secret and top-secret information for payment”. In fact, these people had only applied to the Azerbaijani state structures with questions about the possibility of reintegration and obtaining Azerbaijani citizenship.
But even after all this, official Baku is still patiently trying to convince the Armenians of Karabakh of its sincere interest in their speedy reintegration into Azerbaijani society, so on March 27 it again invited them to negotiations without intermediaries. And this is one of the main conditions of Azerbaijan – negotiations with representatives of the Armenian population of Karabakh should be held directly, without third parties, since the issue of reintegration is an exclusively internal matter of the country and the participation of mediators in them only stops the process of normalising relations, leading it to a dead end. Experience shows that the intervention of outside players, even in the role of moderator of meetings, only aggravates the situation. In such cases, each of the intermediaries tries to ensure its own interests and torpedoes proposals that do not correspond to them. On this basis, and also taking into account its sovereign right, Azerbaijan insists on conducting a dialogue with the Karabakh Armenians without mediators.
However, the representatives of the separatist regime in Khankendi once again refused Azerbaijan’s invitation to discuss reintegration issues in Baku. The absence of a positive response shows that the top of the separatist flake is not interested in peace, that they do not draw conclusions from the current situation, which is very unfortunate. They have no other way out and will not. Karabakh Armenians should either accept citizenship of Azerbaijan and actively engage in the reintegration process, continuing contacts and demonstrating constructiveness on this issue, or leave the territory of Azerbaijan. There is no third option. “Miatsum” won’t take place any more. And Khankendi must finally realize that the desire to solve the problem peacefully doesn’t mean that Baku is not ready for the alternative option. After all, the hand of peace hovering in the air may well turn into a fist. An iron fist…