Burning issues forces Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on back burner for U.S.

Burning issues forces Nagorno-Karabakh conflict on back burner for U.S.

By Claude Salhani - Trend:

There is a need to renew efforts to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict once and for all, said US ambassador to Azerbaijan, Richard Morningstar, at a farewell event on July, 24, in Baku.

Words well spoken, indeed. But are they backed up?

All parties concerned are in favor of finding a resolution to this thorn in the side of the Caucasus - a situation of no war and no peace - that is placing the region in eternal limbo.

"Peace would bring substantial benefits to people across the region and ensure Azerbaijan's prosperity into the future," said the American diplomat.

Indeed, peace, naturally, would be beneficial for Azerbaijan, of that there is no doubt. The country is doing quite well on the economic front, and revenues from oil and natural gas are being well invested, a detail that did not escape the attention of French President Francois Hollande during his trip to Baku about a month ago.

During a meeting with the French community in a downtown hotel, Mr. Hollande praised Azerbaijan and its president, Ilham Aliyev, for investing wisely in the country by developing its infrastructure.

If anyone one side might be opposed to a settlement of the problem it must be the Armenians. Why? Because a settlement, in so far as the Azerbaijanis are concerned, can only mean the return of their land, a solution that Armenia will certainly oppose, as they will come out of this agreement minus the land they began to capture in 1992.

But this is why the talks are complicated because this is not an all-sum game. These are negotiations in which each side will have to make concessions. For Armenia it may mean having to give up land in exchange for peace with its neighbor, and improve relations with other Turkic-speaking countries who support Azerbaijan.

Such as Turkey, a major player in the region.

As mentioned above, this is a negotiation in which every side will need to cede something. In Azerbaijan's case they can offer Armenia two things: peace and financial incentives. The first will create trade and tourism--and all the jobs associated with the industry--between the two South Caucasus countries and the second will help Armenia, which is currently in dire economic straits.

The two member countries of the Minsk Group, the United States and France, two countries with large Armenian communities, can offer Yerevan financial support and security guarantees. This will render Armenia less dependent on Russian support, which it is wholly and unhealthily relying upon at the moment for just about everything.

But before we even venture into that domain, there would be the need to bring the two parties together at the presidential level in order to get the ball rolling, at least in the first set of meetings.

However, Ambassador Morningstar's bosses in Washington, the folks on Pennsylvania Avenue as well as those at Foggy Bottom are currently preoccupied with far more burning issues -- quite literally burning -- in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

In Iraq the Maleki government is fighting for its life as Islamists from the group calling itself the Islamic Caliphate are edging closer to the capital Baghdad every day.

The leitmotif for much of the violence in the Middle East, the conflict opposing Palestinians and Israelis is turning tragic with Gaza now under severe bombardment for 17 days. The death toll keeps mounting, according the respected daily newspaper Haaretz more than 770 Palestinians have been killed and 32 Israeli soldiers have lost their lives in the fighting.

Not to mention the civil war raging in Syria, the precariousness of the political situation on Libya, the nuclear talks with Iran and the civil war in Ukraine between pro-Russian separatists and pro-government troops, with the severe consequences that have resulted such as the downing of the Malaysian Airways jet.

It goes without saying that the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh comes pretty low on the US diplomatic totem pole.

U.S. diplomats in Baku told Trend that there was "nothing really new" in the ambassador's speech. No new policy, no new initiative. But the ambassador was reiterating the U.S. position on the issue. In other words it was really more of the same. A diplomat's going away speech, as it should be; Polite, concise and without much meat on the bones.

It is understandable that with the clock running out on the ambassador's tenure in Baku (he leaves next week), there is little that he can accomplish other that to leave the Azerbaijani people with a little hope for a just resolution of the conflict.

Claude Salhani is a political analyst and senior editor with Trend Agency.

Follow him at on Twitter @ClaudeSalhani

Oil falls on demand fears, strengthening dollar
Oil falls on demand fears, strengthening dollar
Apple says new privacy notifications to roll out in 'early spring'
Apple says new privacy notifications to roll out in 'early spring'
Iran ready to help Kenya on knowledge-based companies
Iran ready to help Kenya on knowledge-based companies
Loading Bars
Latest
Russian Aeroflot announces cancelation of regular flights to Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan extends date of implementing amendment on new construction requirement
Azerbaijan releases footage of Kalbajar's Alybayli village (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Uzbekistan reveals COVID-19 data for January 28
No virus detected in Azerbaijan's tomatoes export in 2020 - Food Safety Agency
2021 total liquids demand to be higher than 2020 annual level
Kazakhstan boosts imports from Portugal despite COVID-19
Azerbaijani-Uzbek trade turnover grows in 2020 despite pandemic
Turkmen company exceeds salt extraction plan
Kazakhstan's coal extracting venture to opens buy to buy spares
Oil falls on demand fears, strengthening dollar
Subsidiary of KazMunayGas to buy electrodes via tender
OPEC+ compliance could wane with oil demand recovery
Land plots in Baku drop in price
Russian Gazprombank talks factors for revising S&P rating on Azerbaijan to 'positive'
Germany will continue its close regional cooperation with Azerbaijan - Federal Foreign Office
Germany intends to increase co-op with Azerbaijan in renewable energy - Federal Foreign Office
Apple says new privacy notifications to roll out in 'early spring'
Iran seeks to eliminate USD in trade with Eurasian Economic Union
New carpet factory to open in Azerbaijan
NASA's Perseverance rover to land on Mars next month
Iran ready to help Kenya on knowledge-based companies
Georgian border police receives troop carriers, fuel trucks, off-road vehicles from US
Kyrgyz citizens legally working in Turkey to be able to receive pensions and benefits there
1,413 new COVID-19 cases recorded in Kazakhstan in 24 hrs
Saudi flagship investment forum calls for excellent credit solutions to global debt problems
Italy decreases import of petroleum oils from Kazakhstan amid COVID-19
EU demands AstraZeneca plan to break vaccine deadlock
Tesla profit, foggy outlook on 2021 deliveries disappoint Wall Street
Inflation converges to targeted value at end of 2020 in Georgia
Chile approves emergency use of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine
UK PM Johnson heads to Scotland amid fears of break up of UK
Europe lifts safety ban on Boeing 737 MAX jet
Mexico's richest man Carlos Slim hospitalized with COVID-19
Biden administration temporarily holds some U.S. weapons exports
Kazakhstan boosts exports to Uzbekistan despite COVID-19
Footage of cemetery destroyed by the Armenians in Azerbaijani village of Saray, Gubadly region (PHOTO)
President Aliyev congratulates re-elected President of Portugal
Turkey registers more than 7 400 new coronavirus cases
Russian bank in talks with Iran to boost currency exchanges
Dressing rooms to work, exchange of goods to be allowed in shopping malls starting February 1
EBRD to oversee more SMEs support programs in Kazakhstan in 2021
Trade, economic and investment cooperation between Kazakhstan and Ecuador expanding
German gov't lowers economic forecast for 2021 to 3 pct
Azerbaijan-Turkmenistan MoU boosts relevancy of Trans-Caspian gas pipeline
Armenia’s Metsamor nuclear plant poses potential threat to region – ombudsman
Azerbaijan eliminating damage caused by Armenia in Fuzuli, Aghdam – Trend TV
Azerbaijani State Oil Company to enter new stage of development - minister
Meeting of trilateral group on Nagorno-Karabakh region may be held soon - Russian MFA
Azerbaijan restoring houses destroyed as a result of Armenia’s aggression in Ganja (PHOTO)
Liberating Azerbaijani territories formed new regional reality - Turkish Security Council
Azerbaijan releases footage of Fuzuli district's Khalafsha village (PHOTOVIDEO)
Azerbaijan electricity provider opens tender to attract various services
Depreciation of Georgian REER associates with domestic export goods gaining competitiveness
Kazakhstan's entrepreneurship dev't fund to unite efforts with WB in SMEs support
Work on increasing level of drinking water supply to Uzbek regions continues
Coty to consolidate fragrance manufacturing operations, close Cologne factory
US companies ready to take part in restoration of Azerbaijan's liberated lands (PHOTO)
Кazakh Electricity Grid Operating Company to opens tenders buy spares for vehicles
Turkish low-cost airline eyes to link countries of religious tourism with Uzbekistan
Eurasian Development Bank setting up top priorities for this year’s strategic period
Georgia sees recovery in remittance inflows
National Bank of Georgia sells funds at foreign exchange auction to stabilize lari
EBRD continues supporting SMEs dev't in Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan reports increase in trade with Denmark
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry grateful to Turkish side
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin rebounds in price
Azerbaijani government's digitalization to favor creation of various projects
Volume of cargo loaded, unloaded in Iran’s Khorramshahr port announced
Iran to launch new projects in tourism, power industry, agriculture fields
Trilateral statement on Karabakh being implemented consistently - Putin
Georgia sees slight increase in export of precious metals - ISET-PI
Contribution to GDP structure of Turkmenistan’s industrial sector revealed
SOCAR Turkey, Middle East Technical University to carry out chemical recycling of plastic waste
Housing prices in Baku decrease
Georgia presents great investment opportunities - Spanish Foreign Ministry
Azerbaijani FM, OSCE MG co-chair from France exchange views on situation in region
JPMorgan to launch UK consumer bank within months
Iranian banks issue big loans to agricultural sector
Azerbaijan liberated its lands from occupation and new opportunities opened up - assistant to president
State Property Service of Azerbaijan to auction small enterprises
Azerbaijan confirms 601 more COVID-19 recoveries
Azerbaijan benefited from cooperation with Turkey in Patriotic War - President's assistant
Houses destroyed by Armenia in Azerbaijan's Tartar being restored - Trend TV reports
Turkmenistan’s Turkmennebit SC names amount of work performed at trust
Iran, Kazakhstan should form join bank to boost trade, transactions - ambassador
Russia remains main exporter of Uzbek textile production
Relationship between Azerbaijan and Turkey - eternal - Azerbaijani president's aide
Uzbekistan’s Statistics Committee, IMF discuss national strategy for statistics dev’t
Demand for Azerbaijani CBA's short-term notes exceeds supply fourfold
Boeing 737 MAX safe to return to service in Europe
Spending on gas exploration declined in 2020
UK voices interest in restoring electric energy sector in Azerbaijan's liberated areas
Armenians built several villas for themselves in Shusha. One of villas belongs to leader of junta, another - to wealthy, corrupt official - President Aliyev
Shuakhevi HPP to play important role in decreasing Georgia’s dependence on imported electricity
Iran would return to JCPOA commitments if others comply - Iranian President
Significant volume of bank loans in Georgia secured with real estate
Georgian JSA Technologies plans to export the product to EU, US and China
Total assets of Azerbaijani banks for 2020 revealed
Azerbaijani banks' reduced total liabilities in 2020
All news