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US News Nagorno-Karabakh: Erdogan flies alongside his Azerbaijani “brother”

23:15  29 september  2020
23:15  29 september  2020 Source:   liberation.fr

Nagorno-Karabakh: France and the Pope call for an end to hostilities

 Nagorno-Karabakh: France and the Pope call for an end to hostilities HAUT-KARABAKH-FRANCE: Nagorno-Karabakh: France and the Pope call for an end to hostilities © Reuters / Reuters Staff HAUT-KARABAKH: FRANCE AND POPE CALL FOR END HOSTILITIES PARIS / EREVAN (Reuters) - France expressed its deep concern on Sunday at the clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh and called on the two camps to immediately cease hostilities and resume dialogue, a the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Des manifestants portant une banderole affichant «Le Karabakh est l'Azerbaïdjan. L'Azerbaïdjan est la Turquie», ce mardi à Istanbul. © MURAD SEZER Demonstrators carrying a banner reading “Karabakh is Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan is Turkey ”on Tuesday in Istanbul. By condemning the Armenian authorities with whom he is cold, the Turkish president intends to position himself against the Minsk group supposed to facilitate the resolution of the conflict and to project itself into the military field.

Tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea between the European Union and Turkey have not had time to fall as Ankara is already projecting itself on another military ground, this time in the South Caucasus. The brutal awakening this Sunday of the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan for the control of Nagorno-Karabakh since 1988 is an opportunity for the Turkish power to position itself once again, against the eternal Armenian enemy, alongside the Azeri "little brother".

Clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh: fear of Turkish intervention in the event of war

 Clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh: fear of Turkish intervention in the event of war © REUTERS / Aziz Karimov An Azerbaijani soldier drives an armored transporter to Baku, Azerbaijan on September 27, 2020. A major conflict involving the Azerbaijan and Armenia could lead to the intervention of competing powers in the Caucasus region, Russia and Turkey. The latter immediately showed its unwavering support for Azerbaijan.

"Turkey will continue to be on the side of her brother and friend Azerbaijan with all her means and her heart," President Erdogan said on Monday. “I once again condemn Armenia for attacking Azeri territory. It is time to put an end to this crisis which started with the occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh ", he added, assuring that peace would return to the region once Armenia" evacuates the Azerbaijani lands that 'she occupies".

The status of Nagorno-Karabakh is a source of continual clashes between Yerevan and Baku. Originally, an autonomous region populated mainly by Armenians in the heart of Soviet Azerbaijan, Artsakh (according to the Armenian name) became de facto independent under the tutelage of Armenia after a bloody war between 1988 and 1993 which killed 30,000 people and displaced a million.

Tensions in Karabakh: Armenia urgently seizes the European Court of Human Rights

 Tensions in Karabakh: Armenia urgently seizes the European Court of Human Rights © AFP / KAREN MINASYAN Armenia urgently seizes the European Court of Human Rights, while tensions in the breakaway region of Nagorno Karabakh continue. The country requests interim measures against Azerbaijan. Since Sunday, tensions have erupted in the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Turkey has always supported Azerbaijan on this issue. In 1993, the country closed its border with Armenia in solidarity with Baku. Since then, Yerevan and Ankara have not had diplomatic relations. An attempt at rapprochement in 2008 fizzled out when Erdogan, then Prime Minister, conditioned the ratification of the normalization protocols on the resolution of the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh. This reversal of the jacket at the time was interpreted as submission to Azeri pressure.

"One nation, two states"

Contacts between Armenia and Turkey now boil down to a few cultural exchanges promoted in particular by the philanthropist Osman Kavala, arbitrarily imprisoned for three years . He is accused of attempting to overthrow the government. The prospects for rapprochement also remain undermined by the refusal of the Turkish state and part of the population to recognize the genocide of 1915.

In Yerevan, the mobilization is in full swing for the war in Nagorno Karabakh

 In Yerevan, the mobilization is in full swing for the war in Nagorno Karabakh © - A man with a badge of the Karabakh Defense Army on his uniform in front of the Yerevan military station, September 30, 2020 In front the building of the military police station on Alabiana Street in Yerevan, dozens of Armenians wait, some smoking cigarette after cigarette, others already in military fatigues. They are preparing to go to the front in Nagorno Karabakh.

The political and economic ties between Baku and Ankara are, conversely, close. Turkey is the main export route for hydrocarbons from Azerbaijan. And if the real cultural links between the two populations are tenuous, the slogan "one [Turkish] nation, two states" becomes, by dint of being rehashed, performative in the political imagination.

In Turkey, the consensus on the support to be given to Baku is therefore almost total. On Monday, the four main political parties except the pro-Kurdish HDP party signed a joint declaration condemning Armenia. The spokesman for the main opposition party (CHP, Kemalist) also called "this attitude of Armenia threatening the peace of the region" unacceptable, comparing it to "terrorism". The Turkish authorities also accuse Yerevan of collaborating with the hated Kurdish guerrillas of the PKK and the Syrian YPG.

Military maneuvers

In this new military escalation, Ankara's involvement is greater than in the past. The Turkish and Azeri armies carried out extensive joint military maneuvers in August, and sources quoted by several media, including The Guardian and Reuters, mention the recruitment and dispatch of Syrian militiamen to the Karabatsi front.

Nagorno-Karabakh: Emmanuel Macron denounces the sending of Syrian "jihadists" and denounces "a red line"

 Nagorno-Karabakh: Emmanuel Macron denounces the sending of Syrian © Reuters The impact of gunfire near a house damaged by a bombardment during the fighting in the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh, in the city of Agdam, October 1, 2020. "A red line has been crossed" in Nagorno-Karabakh, Emmanuel Macron said overnight from Thursday to Friday. The French president denounced the sending of Syrian jihadists to the separatist region, where violent clashes continue to claim deaths. A team of journalists from Le Monde was also injured.

Speculation about Turkey's underlying motives in this conflict is rife. Some people point to the militarist and nationalist headlong rush of President Erdogan, faced with the disaffection of part of his electorate.

Turkish activism in Iraq, Syria, the Eastern Mediterranean, Libya, and now in the Caucasus, however, must above all be viewed in the context of the prevailing ideological climate in Ankara. Within power, the Turkish state and its interests are seen as threatened by "imperialist forces" who are trying to undermine Turkey's return among the great powers.

Since the resumption of fighting in Karabakh, Ankara has not spared the Minsk group, made up of Russia, the United States and France, supposed to facilitate the resolution of the conflict. President Erdogan accuses him of having failed to find a solution since 1992. Could Turkey's increased involvement in this war signal a desire to push Westerners out of the region and gain influence there? It would be a risky bet. Russia, which Ankara is opposed to on several hot issues (Syria, Libya), is the guarantor of Armenia's territorial integrity within the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

"They are not men but drugged combatants": in Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenian soldiers denounce the presence of Syrian mercenaries .
For two weeks, the Azerbaijani and Armenian forces have been fighting for the possession of this mountainous enclave separatist. The presence of about 800 Syrians engaged alongside Azerbaijan is now proven. © Provided by Franceinfo Intense bombardments continued for much of the day, Sunday October 4, on Stepenakert, the Armenian capital of Nagorno-Karabakh, while the escalation of the conflict with Azerbaijan - for the possession of separatist territory - entered its second week.

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