But this does not mean this latest palaver in the skyscraper on the East River can be considered a draw. It actually ended in a resounding failure for Armenia.
Despite the fresh military defeat, Yerevan was clearly preparing for a “diplomatic triumph”. They counted on the support of the United States, the European Union, not to mention France and Germany. And since no decision was made in the end, with no one but France supporting the dispatch of an “international mission” and the majority of participants calling for Azerbaijan to do what had already been done, this is not even a fiasco, but something worse.
This is not the full extent of the diplomatic disaster for Yerevan. Their minister lamented that “people are still starving due to the severe shortages of food imposed by the ongoing 10-month blockade” (no mention of the fact that the junta itself was enforcing the blockade from within), “images coming from Nagorno-Karabakh are truly shocking” (what images? Of panic and fleeing? This can hardly “shock” the international diplomacy, especially in comparison with the images from Karabagh from the early 1990s), etc.
Then he started to circulate fakes: “During the shelling an eight-years-old boy has gone missing in one of the settlements of Nagorno-Karabakh, his ten-years-old brother was killed and his body has not been even possible to take out from the village. The other brother was injured…” (Where is the evidence?) And finally, the apotheosis: “The Azerbaijani social media segment is full of calls to find the missing children and women, to rape them, dismember and feed them to dogs. Azerbaijani users are sharing the profiles of Armenian women from Nagorno-Karabakh on social media making biddings on who will get those women to rape, when they are taken under Azerbaijani custody…” The only thing missing was a “coffin on wheels” or a “zombie attack”.
Let’s leave aside questions as to how appropriate it was to refer to social media in a situation like this, even if they really wanted to take revenge for the metaphorical cake that was smashed into their face at the previous emergency meeting.
The main failure was something else. In the afternoon, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan addressed the nation, literally saying: “The information on social media about mass casualties among the population of Karabakh is not consistent with reality. There is no direct threat to the population of Karabakh at present. We will consider the issue of evacuating Armenians from Karabakh if necessary, but there is no threat to them at the moment.”
This was immediately pointed out by the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan, Jeyhun Bayramov, in his brilliant speech, reminding the audience that the Armenian Foreign Minister was circulating fakes that had been refuted by his own Prime Minister. Making the head of the Armenian Foreign Ministry look like a cheap fake news monger is certainly a skill. Considering the audience, even more so.
The question that begs itself is: can Armenian representatives be trusted at all, if they resort to deliberate lies from the stand of the UN Security Council? Does it make sense to get involved with a country that uses such tricks and ruin relations with Azerbaijan over it?
Frankly speaking, any foreign minister would simply resign after a failure of these proportions. But Armenia has rules of its own, and Ararat Mirzoyan acts according to the principle of “what’s the big deal? So what if we got tripped by our own words? It happens.”
When will Armenia’s new and old patrons realize who they got mixed up with?