Azerbaijan, Baku, 1 April / Trend / "Sharp criticism by Baku against the OSCE Minsk Group Co-chairmen, especially the USA, is a tactical step to strengthen the support for Azerbaijan's position," said Zeyno Baran, Director of the Center for Eurasian Policy of Hudson Institute.
The UN General Assembly's adoption of the Resolution on Nagorno-Karabakh 'was a response to the declaration of Kosovo's independence and the large support it gained from the West,' Zeyno Baran said in his interview with Armenian Mediamax news agency.
" Baku is concerned that Kosovo will be used as a precedent and Georgia shares this concern. Thus, this Resolution can be considered as a policy to 'forestall' such development of the events. Furthermore, I think that taking into consideration the fact that Russia uses the issue of precedent of Kosovo with regards to Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Baku (and Tbilisi) wanted to gain confirmation that Kosovo will be considered as a unique case and to see how the Russians will vote," the American politician said.
According to her, concerns are growing in Azerbaijan that the West unfairly approaches it because it is a Muslim country. " Azerbaijan sees how the USA decisively supports the territorial integrity of Georgia, but does not see the same attitude towards itself. Of course, considering the fact that the USA is the co-chairman country of the OSCE Minsk Group, the American Government cannot hold any other position on Nagorno-Karabakh. Unfortunately, it is difficult for the ordinary Azerbaijanis to understand this difference. Many Azerbaijanis consider that Azerbaijan is an important ally of the USA with regards to the energy security, its fight against terrorism and other issues, but does not receive much in reply. However, I think that officials and large part of the Azerbaijani society accept the importance of partnership with the USA and will not allow the Resolution to bring harm to relations between Baku and Washington," Baran said.
Azerbaijan recently appealed to the OSCE Secretariat in Vienna to know the procedures of appointing and recalling the co-chairmen of the OSCE Minsk Group. The local media sources report that it is caused by the dissatisfaction of the Azerbaijani Government with the issue that the co-chairman countries (the USA, France and Russia) voted against the adoption of the Resolution on the Situation in Occupied Territories of Azerbaijan during the session of the UN General Assembly on 14 March.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries appeared in 1988 due to Armenian territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenia has occupied 20% of the Azerbaijani lands including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and its seven surrounding districts. Since 1992 to the present time, these territories have been under Armenian occupation. In 1994, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a cease-fire agreement at which time the active hostilities ended. The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group ( Russia, France and USA) are holding peaceful negotiations.