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Key to Nagorno-Karabakh peace process is in Stepanakert - Russian expert

18:49, 11.04.2012 Region: Armenia, Karabakh, Azerbaijan, Russia, Turkey, Iran Theme: Politics, Analytics

MOSCOW. – Nagorno-Karabakh peace process is one of the difficult and exploding conflicts in the post-Soviet Union space, Russian expert Stanislaw Ivanov said in a special interview to Iran News.

He stated that tension on the line of the contact is maintained and the initiator of diversifications is the Azerbaijani side. The tension between Azerbaijani-Armenian sides is maintained also based on the militant statements by Baku. Another external factor that hampers the stabilization of the conflict is the growing threat of possible military operations of the U.S. and Israel against Iran. Any military attack or even escalation of domestic political situation in Iran may ‘freeze’ the Karabakh peace process.

Except the mediating states on the Karabakh issue, including the U.S., Russia and France, other major states in the region as Turkey and Iran want to actively be engaged in the peace process. In case of Turkey, its role is illogical as it openly supports one of the conflicting sides [Azerbaijan], while Iran tries to maintain the status quo in Karabakh and the balance of forces in the region, without allowing the ‘internationalization’ of the conflict based on the intervention of the forces from outside. Russia, like Iran is for the conflicting sides to find the solution through compromises. As for the regular triplet meetings among Russian, Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents, the expert believes that Nagorno-Karabakh President should also join those meetings.

“More and more experts accept that the key of the peace process is in Stepanakert,” he said adding aspiration of the people to realize their right of establishing own state through a referendum and other democratic mechanisms is increasing.

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