Today’s Zaman: Normalization Of Armenian- Turkish Relations To Ensur


27.07.2009 16:21 GMT+04:00

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ According to S. Enders Wimbush, senior vice president
of international programs and policy at the Hudson Institute, the
opening of borders between Armenia and Turkey will require intense
and delicate diplomacy with Azerbaijan. However, both Turkey and
Azerbaijan will benefit if they succeed , the Turkish edition of
Today’s Zaman writes in today’s article.

The article states that Russia, the dominant power in the region,
is solely interested in maintaining its grip. As the region is
part of the former USSR, it is in Russia’s interest to preserve its
influence in the region over the countries of the post-Soviet areas,
particularly that of the South Caucasus. While doing so, since the
collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has attempted to manipulate the
regional countries through long-protracted conflicts such as Abkhazia
and South-Ossetia, two breakaway regions of Georgia allegedly supported
by Russia and Nagorno-Karabakh.

Last summer we witnessed two frozen conflicts unfrozen in Moscow’s
favor in Georgia. I am dubious that Moscow would support any resolution
of Nagorno-Karabakh that reduced its leverage in Armenia and Azerbaijan
from the status quo," the author of the article quoted the Director
of Russian and Eurasian Program of the Center for Strategic and
International Studies, Andrew Kuchins.

However, the Turkish-Armenian rapprochement could be regarded as a
brilliant opportunity to drive Armenia out of the control of Russia,
to pull the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict from stalemate and in effect,
to bring peace and stability to the region.

In contrast, Kuchins restated Russia’s policy of dominance serving
to keep the countries in the South Caucasus under its control
in the region. He is skeptical that Moscow really supports the
Turkish-Armenian rapprochement and the border opening since that
would reduce the leverage that Russia has over Armenia.