Responding to this question, Dmitry Peskov, the press secretary of the Russian president, stated that “the question of the further presence of Russian peacekeepers in Karabakh is not yet decided.”
“It’s hard to say for now because they are currently located on Azerbaijani territory,” Peskov replied.
However, Peskov’s response doesn’t provide much clarity beyond the fact that the peacekeepers are on Azerbaijani territory.
Commenting on the future of the peacekeepers to Minval.az, Tofiq Zulfugarov, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan, outlined the following scenario: terrorist forces have been neutralized in the region, Armenian armed formations have been withdrawn from Azerbaijan, which means there is no further purpose for Russian peacekeepers to remain on Azerbaijani territory.
“Furthermore, if we pay attention to the statement made by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, we can hear him openly saying that peacekeepers will remain in the region until 2025. Therefore, the Russian peacekeeping operation will also come to an end. However, we will address this issue later,” he added.
Another issue is the worsening relations between Baku and Washington in the midst of all these developments. An expert notes that Armenians who are upset with Russia will demand the withdrawal of the Russian military base from Gyumri, and it appears that these processes have already begun.
“Moreover, President Joe Biden of the United States will meet with the heads of Central Asian countries. Prior to this, the President of China, Xi Jinping, met with them in a special format. Is any Western activity possible in Central Asia without Azerbaijan? No! Now, tell me, what is Azerbaijan doing that contradicts Western interests?” posed Zulfugarov.
Regarding the Zangezur Corridor and potential processes surrounding Zangezur, the diplomat mentioned that negotiations to define borders should commence.
“There are no official borders, so we will negotiate with Armenia and the United States. Other countries will recognize the results of these negotiations. Armenia itself has blurred its borders, and the Alma-Ata Declaration principle is not working due to their fault,” Zulfugarov noted.
The diplomat added that Armenia itself made amendments to its borders in 1991, claiming that Karabakh was annexed to Armenia.
“So, Armenia itself has blurred its borders, which means there should be negotiations about a new border. Therefore, everything currently discussed about Armenia’s territorial integrity also needs to be determined. I too support Armenia’s territorial integrity, and you do as well, it just needs to be determined during negotiations,” he concluded.