Matthew Bryza criticizes Obama Administration for negligence to Karabakh problem
Baku – APA. The Washington Post has published an article by Matthew Bryza, a nonresident fellow at the Atlantic Council, was US mediator of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict from 2006 to 2009 and US ambassador to Azerbaijan from 2010 to 2011.
In his article, Matthew Bryza, said he is therefore struck by the lack of cooperation on Nagorno-Karabakh between Washington and Moscow in recent days.
Bryza recalled that he served as the US co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group from 2006 to 2009. “My Russian counterpart, Yuri Merzlyakov, was always constructive, as were his superiors: Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov hosted the co-chairs for hours of brainstorming, while then-President Dmitry Medvedev helped push what was close to a breakthrough in 2009. Though Washington and Moscow locked horns on Russia’s invasion of Georgia in August 2008, our cooperation on Nagorno-Karabakh was as intense as our enmity regarding Georgia. . Rather than uniting for concerted action in the spirit of the Minsk Group, Putin has been going it alone. Perhaps he seeks to undercut any credit Vice President Biden might have garnered for invigorating the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process when he met separately with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian President Serge Sarkisian the day before the flare-up in violence. Or perhaps Putin was angered that Sarkisian and Aliyev proceeded with their White House meeting on the margins of President Obama’s nuclear summit at the end of March, which the Russian president boycotted,” he said.
The former ambassador noted that indeed, the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan had little interest in these unprecedented military clashes occurring just as they were trying to persuade the White House to engage in the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process.
“In any case, Putin is exploiting the situation through intensive diplomacy that Obama shows no interest in matching. The White House has failed even to issue an official statement. Meanwhile, the State Department’s reaction has been muted, consisting of a news statement by Secretary of State John Kerry that does not reflect the unprecedented nature of current circumstances, plus Kerry’s routine phone discussions with Lavrov. Putin, by contrast, has consulted repeatedly with Aliyev and Sarkisian, while Russia’s foreign and defense ministers are actively engaging their counterparts in Yerevan and Baku. As a result, a April 5 cease-fire was brokered by Russia’s military chief with his Azerbaijani and Armenian counterparts, but without direct participation by the Minsk Group co-chairs,” he added.
Through these actions, Putin has positioned Russia to gain in two key ways, according to Bryza.
“First, Russia is now repairing its international reputation following its debacle in Ukraine. Second, the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan are left with the impression that Russia alone calls the shots in the South Caucasus,” he said.
The overstretched Obama White House may view Putin’s gains as a price worth paying to quell the current violence and keep an additional crisis off its plate, the former US co-chair said.
“Such benign neglect, however, creates opportunities for Kremlin exploitation in a region that connects Turkey, Russia, Iran, Central Asia and Caspian energy supplies. Putin has followed up the Moscow-brokered cease-fire by pressing Azerbaijan to join the Eurasian Economic Union and the Collective Security Treaty Organization, his counterweights to the European Union and NATO. Moscow has also announced that Russian internal passports can now be used for Russian citizens traveling to Armenia, effectively erasing any border between the two countries. And now Iran, whose previous efforts to insert itself into Nagorno-Karabakh mediation were thwarted, is maneuvering with Russia to form a triangle of cooperation with Azerbaijan and fill the strategic vacuum left by the United States. As Putin pulls Azerbaijan and Armenia away from the West in these ways, he is laying the foundation for future crises, while Washington watches,” he concluded.
Related news releases
- 18.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev met with OPEC Secretary General - UPDATED
- 18.03.2018President of Moldova: "Global dialogues in Azerbaijan contribute to the reduction of international tension"
- 17.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev congratulates Chinese counterpart on re-election as President
- 17.03.2018Two panels held on third day of 6th Global Baku Forum
- 16.03.2018China’s foreign policy mulled at 6th Global Baku Forum
- 16.03.2018Azerbaijani, Jordanian FMs exchange letters marking 25th anniversary of diplomatic ties
- 16.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev receives president of Paraguayan Senate - UPDATED
- 16.03.2018Security in the Balkans discussed at Global Baku Forum
- 16.03.2018Moldova nearing solution to Transnistrian conflict: President Dodon
- 16.03.2018Gennady Burbulis: I hope Azerbaijan, Armenia will come to agreement
- 16.03.2018Ex-PM Lagumdzija: Azerbaijani president’s visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina to open new page for co-op in many areas
- 16.03.2018Moldovan president: Geopolitical competition on the rise worldwide
- 16.03.2018South-West transport corridor project has great future, says Azerbaijani FM
- 16.03.2018Albania stands by Azerbaijan in Karabakh conflict – president
- 16.03.2018Situation in Middle East discussed at 6th Global Baku Forum
- 16.03.2018Turkish MFA: Zurich protocols benefited Armenia more than Turkey
- 16.03.2018Albania, Azerbaijan enjoy good relations: ex-president
- 16.03.2018Some states testing new weapons in Syria, ex-Lebanese PM claims
- 16.03.2018Working group set up to bring Azerbaijani citizens back from Iraq
- 16.03.2018Azerbaijani FM stresses need for reforms in UN
- 16.03.2018Turkish MP’s health deteriorates during speech at Global Baku Forum
- 16.03.2018Lebanon’s ex-PM: Unresolved Palestinian conflict lies at root of developments in region
- 15.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev receives Iranian FM - UPDATED
- 15.03.2018US Ambassador to Azerbaijan Cekuta to leave his position in late March
- 15.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev meets with member of Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency - UPDATED
- 15.03.2018President Ilham Aliyev presents “Dostlug” Order to UNESCO goodwill ambassador
- 15.03.2018First VP Mehriban Aliyeva meets president of Marianna V. Vardinoyannis Foundation
- 15.03.2018First VP Mehriban Aliyeva meets Italian Senate's VP
- 15.03.2018Azerbaijani president meets with Albanian counterpart - UPDATED
- 15.03.2018Ilham Aliyev sends congratulatory letter to Angela Merkel
- 15.03.2018Azerbaijan’s First VP Mehriban Aliyeva meets with Turkish PM
- 15.03.2018Respect for int’l law will further strengthen respect for territorial integrity of countries: Iranian FM
- 15.03.2018Former US envoy to UN: Conflicts around the world will increase
- 15.03.2018Georgia to host next meeting of Azerbaijani, Georgian, Iranian and Turkish FMs
- 15.03.2018Existing opportunities should be utilized to bridge Asia with Europe, says Georgian FM
- 15.03.2018Turkey says quadrilateral co-op format with Azerbaijan, Iran, Georgia to contribute to peace and stability
- 15.03.2018Azerbaijani, Turkish, Iranian, Georgian FMs hail new format of quadrilateral cooperation
- 15.03.2018Baku Declaration adopted at meeting of Azerbaijani, Turkish, Iranian, Georgian FMs
- 15.03.2018Deputy PM: TAP is an important project for Bosnia and Herzegovina
- 15.03.2018PM Yildirim: Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia take serious steps to ensure regional security
- 12.04.2016Azerbaijan urges int’l community to demand from Armenia to cease illegal occupation of territories
- 12.04.2016Baku reacts to Greek, Latvian MPs’ illegal visit to occupied Nagorno-Karabakh
- 12.04.2016President Aliyev: Azerbaijan-Malaysia relations of pivotal importance
- 12.04.2016Turkish FM: Karabakh conflict should be resolved within Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity
- 12.04.2016Istanbul hosting OIC FMs’ meeting
- 12.04.2016Azerbaijani MP calls on OSCE PA to hold separate event on Karabakh conflict