BAKU: Garabagh Settlement Up To Russia, US Analyst Says


AzerNews Weekly
July 28 2009

Settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Upper (Nagorno) Garabagh conflict
depends upon Russia, an influential US analyst has said.

Frederick Starr, the director of the John Hopkins University Central
Asia and Caucasus Institute, told Azerbaijan`s Russian-language news
website,, that the long-lasting dispute flared up and still
lingers on due to Russia. According to Starr, without Russia`s support
Armenians would not have been able to maintain their positions in
Upper Garabagh.

"The occupation of Azerbaijani territories has not benefited
Armenia. Time has shown that Armenians have turned into hostages of
the conflict. This is the main cause hampering the development of
the Armenian economy and society."

The two countries fought a lengthy war that ended with the signing of
a cease-fire in 1994, though Armenia continues to occupy Upper Garabagh
and seven other Azerbaijani districts in defiance of international law.

Regarding the new US administration`s stance on the Garabagh
settlement, Starr said Washington is exploring ways of striking a
common ground with Moscow on the issue. "But this is impossible. When
the White House realizes that its hopes have been shattered, it will
more seriously address the Garabagh conflict. The Obama administration
is not ready to directly influence the Armenians, i.e. to state
`put an end to the conflict, free Garabagh.` But, sooner or later,
this has to be done."

Touching on Vice President Joe Biden`s visit to the Caucasus region,
the analyst said this indicates that the US has no intention to
withdraw from the region.