Sergey Lavrov on Russian Efforts to Halt Conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh and Other Issues

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Sergey Lavrov on Russian Efforts to Halt Conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh and Other Issues

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

Days earlier, Lavrov spoke with his Armenian and Azerbaijan counterparts on Nagorno-Karabakh (NK below) fighting, calling the discussion “unique negotiations.”

Vladimir Putin made a “decisive contribution,” he said, including “twice in the middle of the night” during all night talks.

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu was also involved.

Ceasefire agreed to on October 9 didn’t hold. Since, then Lavrov spoke to officials from both warring sides several times, he said.

Shoigu spoke to their defense ministers. Putin spoke to their leaders.

A ceasefire verification mechanism was created.

Lavrov called it “key to a lasting secession of hostilities, which damage civilian facilities and bring misery to people.”

He explained that whenever negotiations take place for warring sides to halt fighting, it’s vital for their military commanders to coordinate its implementation.

It’s one thing for warring parties to agree on halting hostilities, another to make it stick, what so far hasn’t happened in NK.

Political settlements of conflicts are possible if both sides agree and follow through on compromises.

What Russia proposed remains on the table.

It involves “a staged and gradual withdrawal of the sides’ armed forces from the districts bordering (NK) on the conditions of its security and the maintenance of reliable communications between (both sides) until the region’s final status is agreed.”

Russia’s proposal involved “(t)roop withdrawal from five districts at the first stage is to be complemented with the restoration of communications, economic ties and transport contacts, as well as the deployment of peacekeeping forces to guarantee the non-resumption of hostilities,” Lavrov explained.

Military observers rather than peacekeepers would be involved. As a neutral party with good relations with both warring sides, Lavrov offered to provide them if their leadership agrees.

Turkish ties to Azerbaijan, joint training of their military forces, large-scale sales of Turkish heavy weapons to Baku, Ankara’s command and control involvement in fighting, along with supplying jihadist fighters against Armenia greatly fueled weeks of conflict that continue.

Lavrov called Russia’s relations with Turkey a “partnership,” at times “strategic…never” entirely this way — clearly not in NK.

Moscow strongly opposes Erdogan’s support for Azerbaijan against Armenia.

He promotes his regional interests. When legitimate, Russia has no complaints, which is not the case in NK with Ankara backing Azeri aggression.

“We do not agree with the position that has been voiced by Turkey and enunciated on several occasions by President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan,” said Lavrov, adding: 

“It is no secret. We cannot share statements to the effect that there is a military solution to the conflict and that it is acceptable.”

“Regrettably, Turkey has been able to do this, confirming that it will support any actions undertaken by Azerbaijan to solve this conflict, including military ones.”

So far, Lavrov hasn’t convinced his Turkish counterpart that only diplomatic talks and compromise can resolve fighting and make it stick.

Military solutions won’t work. If imposed by one side over the other, things will prove untenable, hostilities likely to erupt again, said Lavrov.

While Turkey is unacceptably involved in NK, the US and NATO are unacceptably involved everywhere.

Lavrov: In Syria, the US “undermine(d) Security Council Resolution 2254.”

It “reaffirmed Syria’s territorial integrity and required others to respect it.” 

The US “create(d) quasi-state authorities on its territory without a second thought.” 

“First, they announced a ban on the purchase of Syrian oil by all countries, and then…mine(d) oil there and used the proceeds to strengthen Kurdish units that are not controlled by Damascus.”

Turkey also stole Syrian oil. So did US supported ISIS.

Washington has been actively involved in Libya since the Obama regime and NATO replaced Gaddafi with endless conflict, related violence, chaos, and human misery.

On issues related to Palestinians and Israeli interests, the US “pushed almost everyone else aside, claiming they will sort this out themselves.”

Its notion of peace process conflict resolution is unconditional Palestinian surrender to US/Western/Israeli interests – the illusion of peace, never the real thing.

On Russian/EU relations, the Navalny situation questions whether it’s possible going forward, whether Moscow can do business with the bloc based on its unacceptable actions toward its officials, said Lavrov.

Russia will not “grovel” to higher partners in the bloc or elsewhere.

The economic partnership with the EU may come undone, possibly even almost completed Nord Stream 2, said Lavrov, adding:

Brussels and individual bloc countries cannot “destroy the entire system of gas transportation interaction maintained via many other agencies and companies.”

That aside, the EU made clear that it hasn’t matured enough to be a reliable geopolitical partner, the collective soul of its member states sold to Washington on most issues.

Lavrov minced no words calling the Americans “rude, impolite and brazen.”

He failed to explain why he and other Russian officials refer to them as “partners,” and “colleagues” when they’re mortal enemies involved in plotting regime change.

Lavrov covered much more in his remarks. Whenever discussing major issues, his candor and straight talk are polar opposite how his duplicitous Western counterparts operate.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.