Turkish-Russian Union: Armenia on threshold of serious unrest

Turkish-Russian Union: Armenia on threshold of serious unrest

Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec.19

By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

Anti-Russian sanctions, applied after the Crimean events by the West, also became in every sense a good chance for Turkey, along with the fact that they forced Moscow to shrink its economic grip and led to a sharp drop in the rate of the ruble.

Ignoring the US and EU sanctions against Russia, representatives of Ankara declared that they would continue economic cooperation with Moscow.

Although there are dark sides in the relationship of the parties regarding the Turkish Stream gas project, it can be seen that both sides are persistent in the implementation of this project.

Numerous political events taking place in the region, sanctions against Russia, the attitude of the EU to Turkey gives grounds to say that the Moscow-Ankara union, which was once just a dream, is real.

If this alliance is a necessity for Moscow, for Ankara the union is also a tough response to Europe, using the "human rights" and "freedom of thought" as a cover, along with the fact that it is the realization of economic interests.

In fact, the rapprochement between Moscow and Ankara, which is considered a historic breakthrough, could have a serious repurcussions in the region.

Speaking at his 10th annual press conference on Dec.18, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Turkey and Russia have many common interests. He said the two countries have many coinciding regional interests, adding that it is impossible to resolve these issues without Turkey's participation.

In reality, Putin's remarks prove the increasing regional influence of Turkey, which is a 'door of hope' for Moscow. The main unresolved regional issue is the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

It is highly likely that the strengthening of the alliance between Ankara and Moscow will have a serious impact on the region and change of interests. The Russian alliance with Armenia, which seeks to mark the 100th anniversary of the 'Armenian genocide' this year, will be overshadowed for Moscow.

Being seriously anxious about the rapprochement between the two countries, Armenia will have to turn to the West and the US in search of patrons and it cannot be ruled out that against the backdrop of the economic union between Ankara and Moscow, Yerevan will face serious political unrest.

As a result of the political processes in the South Caucasus and the strengthening ties between Moscow and Ankara it looks like Armenia, which is the weakest player in the region, will be the losing party.

In fact, Moscow is well aware that its alliance with Armenia will not save its crumbling economy; but more adversely, the crisis in the Russian economy is moreover "a sign of the end of the world" for Armenia. The effect of which has sent protestors into the streets of Yerevan demanding the government relieve the growing economic stress on the population by Dec. 23 or incur unforeseeable consequences.

The economic crisis in Russia may also have an indirect effect on the Turkish market, although it is not as dangerous for Ankara as it is for Yerevan.

Today, it is undeniable that along with strengthening of relations between Ankara and Moscow, and the Moscow-Yerevan relations receding into the background, the relations between Baku and Ankara stand at a high level still.

Considering that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is a fundamental factor affecting the prosperity and economic growth in the region, I can say that the conflict's settlement will be a higher priority issue amid these current developments.

Turkey, which has constantly supported the position and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, will never take any action against the interests of Azerbaijan; no matter what course the improvement of relations between Ankara and Moscow may take.

The fact that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is a national issue for Turkey and is a major impediment to stability in the region; it is one that Turkey has personal interest in seeing it removed from the list of frozen conflicts.

Edited by CN

---

Rufiz Hafizoglu is the head of Trend Agency's Arabic news service, follow him on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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