Following In Kosovo’s Steps

by Natalia Pulina, Armen Khanbabjan

Agency WPS
Defense And Security (Russia)
Source: Moscow News, No 30, August 3 – 9, 2007, p. 19
August 8, 2007 Wednesday

Intermediaries regard actions of the new Karabakh leadership with

The Effect Election In Nagorno-Karabakh And Kosovo Status Will Have
On The Karabakh Crisis Resolution

Kosovo’s sovereignty may compel Armenia to officially recognize

The international community is split on the election of the
Nagorno-Karabakh president on July 19.

The election of Nagorno-Karabakh is a fait accompli in any case, one
that revived interest in Karabakh crisis resolution and doubly so in
the involved parties. Most observers believe that Nagorno-Karabakh’s
policy will remain unchanged under their new President, Bako Saakjan.

Its means that the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic will insist on its right
to be a fully fledged participant in the Azerbaijani-Armenian conflict
settlement talks – for starters.

Matthew Bryza, US Undersecretary of State for European and Eurasian
Affairs and American Chairman of the OSCE Minsk Group, visited
Yerevan the other day. The US diplomat proclaimed Stepanakert better
ready for negotiations than the capital of any other unrecognized
republic in the Commonwealth. Bryza added, however, that there was
no point in waiting for any progress in the immediate future because
"presidential campaigns in Armenia and Azerbaijan in 2008 cannot
be counted on to offer anything constructive." Azerbaijani Foreign
Minister Elmar Mamedjarov disagreed with Bryza and said there were
some dormant capacities for conflict settlement yet and that some
progress in the talks could actually be made before the end of the
year. "Given sufficient political will, certain progress is not at
all impossible," Mamedjarov said.

It is common knowledge meanwhile that Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh,
the Trans-Dniester region, and South Ossetia cannot wait for the
determination of Kosovo’s status.

"The recognition of Kosovo’s sovereignty will pave the way to
recognition of our sovereignty too," Saakjan said.

It follows that the decision of the international community to
grant Kosovo sovereignty may compel Armenia to officially recognize
Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. Needless to say, Yerevan will pull every
string and call in every debt in international affairs to make sure
that some other countries recognize Nagorno-Karabakh too. The two
equal sides will be able to initiate talks over unification only after
that. "It may be some sort of asymmetric confederation," President
Robert Kocharjan was quoted as saying.