The military clash of 2020 radically changed the balance between Armenia and Azerbaijan. It became one of the bloodiest in the region in the 21st century. Have Yerevan and Baku come close to peace and settlement of the long-standing ethno-political conflict? Are there any hopes that the Caucasus will be associated not only with wars?
As soon as the shots died down, Pashinyan and Aliyev announced their readiness to meet and ne***iate. We made statements about their intention to unravel the complex knot of problems of demarcation and delimitation of the state border. A year later, the work of the OSCE Minsk Group resumed and a meeting of the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan took place.
Both the Armenian and Azeri leaders regard Russia as the main mediator of the peace process. No senseless competition for peaceful projects has been planned yet.
In the joint agreements of Vladimir Putin, Nikol Pashinyan and Ilham Aliyev dated November 9, 2020 and January 11, 2021, the priority item is to unblock transport communications.
Nevertheless, armed incidents still do not stop, which pose a certain threat to the existing fragile ceasefire. The peace process has actually been paused. There are no substantive ne***iations. The problem of prisoners of war on the territory of Azerbaijan has not been closed either.
It is worth noting that Iran's military activity has grown during the year. The existing contradictions were supplemented by the differences in the positions of Baku and Tehran. An important factor was the victory of Ibrahim Raisi in the presidential elections in Iran, who is trying in every possible way to emphasize that the position of the Islamic Republic not only in the Middle East, but also in Eurasia as a whole will have to be reckoned with.
If we summarize the contradictory tendencies, to what point is the Caucasus closer today: a new confrontation or a way out of the funnel of conflicts?