Expert: Azerbaijani President showed high level of political, diplomatic experience
BAKU, Azerbaijan, Feb. 17
By Huseyn Safarov - Trend:
President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev showed his political and diplomatic experience at panel discussions on the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict held on sidelines of Munich Security Conference, an expert on international governance, Director of the Caucasus Center for Political Analysis Ahmad Alili told Trend.
Ahmad Alili noted that he read opinions of a number of experts regarding the panel discussions, and it was clear to everyone that the Azerbaijan president showed a high level of political and diplomatic experience.
"During the debate, it was apparent that President Ilham Aliyev was more confident. It was obvious to everyone, and everyone wrote about it. Particularly, the attention of the expert community was attracted by non-verbal contacts of President Ilham Aliyev with the audience. At the time of the debates, President Ilham Aliyev was always in contact with the audience, and this for many became an indicative factor in the sense that he was supported by the audience. The world community has noticed that the gap between President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan was very large and obviously not in favor of the Armenian prime minister. No one questions the results of the meeting, neither European scientists, nor the expert community. President Ilham Aliyev won a clear victory," Ahmad Alili said.
According to the political analyst, the most important victory of Azerbaijan is that President Ilham Aliyev brought the Armenian leadership to a public dialogue on the international platform.
"For a very long time, the Armenian leadership avoided alternative platforms for dialogue. The political elite of Armenia all the time insisted that the dialogues on the settlement of Karabakh conflict be conducted only within the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group. The former leadership of Armenia always refused such formats. However, Pashinyan agreed to a dialogue, thereby driving himself into a diplomatic trap. The fact that the Armenian prime minister took part in a dialogue on an international platform and met in public with President Ilham Aliyev can be considered a victory for Azerbaijan and the head of state. When such meetings are held in an open format, it is particularly gratifying, since in this case the difference between the Azerbaijani president and Armenian prime minister is clear, and not in favor of the latter," Ahmad Alili said.
Regarding the arguments that President Ilham Aliyev countered, the expert said that the Azerbaijani President always had weighty arguments, but because negotiations on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are often held behind closed doors, they are not always heard by a wide audience.
"Prior to the debate in Munich, Armenia was benefiting precisely from the fact that the negotiations were conducted behind closed doors. In this case, the Armenian leadership had room for manipulation, first of all, of its people. But yesterday's debates were open and allowed President Ilham Aliyev not only to demonstrate his mastery to the world community, but also to convey the truth. In other words, it was an education session for international political actors and a master class for Pashinyan. The Azerbaijani president showed the Armenian leadership how to conduct such negotiations. I think that meetings of this format should continue and other international organizations should contribute to this," the expert added.