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YEREVAN. – The story of blogger Alexander Lapshin consists of several measurements, Russian political scientist Sergey Markedonov on Thursday said at a press conference in Armenia’s capital city of Yerevan.

First, he pointed to Russian-Belarusian relations.

“When something is used as a bargaining chip, to reach your positions,” he noted. “When human life becomes secondary.”

Subsequently, Markedonov pointed to integration problems in the post-Soviet space expanse, stating that the interests of many do not coincide.

In his words, visits to de facto entities with such “suspended” status—just like Nagorno-Karabakh—are indispensable. 

“People are living there,” added the Russian political scientist. “They are not ready to consider Azerbaijan their homeland. And how will people outside know what is happening there? So, journalists and political scientists need to visit.”

“The [Karabakh] issue should be resolved through negotiations, mutual concessions,” he added. “A return to 1988 is impossible even because it was Soviet Azerbaijan, with Soviet mechanisms. Today’s Armenia and Azerbaijan will hardly be ready for that.”

Sergey Markedonov recalled that even though the Azerbaijan Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ (MFA) “blacklist” of Karabakh visitors is already four years old, the conflict is still unresolved.

In December 2016, Israeli Russian blogger Alexander Lapshin was detained in the Belarusian capital city of Minsk. The reason was his being on the international wanted persons’ list, due to a search which Azerbaijan had declared. Baku accuses him of visiting Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) without its consent.

And on February 7 of the current year, Belarus extradited the blogger to the Azerbaijani capital city of Baku, where he was taken into custody.

This text available in   Հայերեն and Русский
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