Azerbaijan drops Armenian land corridor plan, looks to Iran – Aliyev adviser Reuters

Oct 25 2023

Oct 25 (Reuters) – Azerbaijan is no longer interested in securing a land corridor through Armenia to the Azerbaijani enclave of Nakhichevan and will instead discuss the issue with its southern neighbour Iran, a senior Azerbaijani official said on Wednesday.

Routing a potential corridor through Iran, which borders both Armenia and Azerbaijan, could help reduce tensions around southern Armenia, which Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has in the past referred to as historically Azeri land.

"Azerbaijan had no plans to seize Zangezur," Hikmet Hajiyev, a top foreign policy adviser to Iliyev, told Reuters, referring to the putative corridor that would link Azerbaijan proper to its enclave of Nakhichevan bordering Turkey, Baku's close ally.

"After the two sides failed to agree on its opening, the project has lost its attractiveness for us — we can do this with Iran instead," he said.

Armenia had opposed such a corridor, fearing having to make further territorial concessions after Azerbaijan seized the contested region of Nagorno-Karabakh in a lightning offensive in September.

Although internationally viewed as Azeri territory, Karabakh had been controlled by ethnic Armenians since the fall of the Soviet Union in the 1990s. The Azeri offensive prompted almost all the region's 120,000 ethnic Armenians to flee into Armenia.

Azerbaijan had in recent weeks called for its longstanding request for a transport corridor through southern Armenia to be included in ongoing talks on a peace treaty aimed at ending three decades of conflict between Baku and Yerevan.

Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS