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Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

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  • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

    Originally posted by londontsi View Post
    LOL, Thats called politics ...

    The two sides make statements about agreements reached on several things, how more specific could it be?

    First of all let's get one thing clear, the vast majority of the contracts are already executed (as noted in the original article itself). As for the remaining, the disruptions in payments could very well be due to the revision of the budget for 2016 (in which the spendings were actually increased compared to the original 2016 budget, including the military), and all that may have caused administrative delays. Of course even the oil fund can be used to cover these, that would also take time for authorization, but the solution is not really difficult. BTW, the current budget is based on oil price of $25, while the oil price is hovering above $35.
    Last edited by Aslanov; 03-04-2016, 01:43 AM.


    • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

      Originally posted by armnuke View Post
      wasn't this a year ago?
      October 2014


      • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

        Steffen Elgersma: We are satisfied with Armenia-NATO developments
        17:00, 03.03.2016
        Region:World News, Armenia
        Theme: Politics

        YEREVAN. – We are satisfied with the Armenia-NATO developments.

        Representative of the Political Affairs and Security Policy Division at NATO, Steffen Elgersma, stated the abovementioned at Thursday’s discussion on Armenia-NATO relations.

        Elgersma noted they have a twenty-year history of cooperation, Armenia has assumed commitments to participate in NATO peacekeeping activities, and considering the country’s security challenges, its respective participation is impressive. He added that Armenia’s participation in NATO peacekeeping operations has reached the highest level.

        Steffen Elgersma noted that NATO applies two principles regarding Armenia: respect, and consideration of the wishes of the parties.

        He stressed that, first, NATO and Armenia respect one another’s choices, and second, they consider the wishes and the personal wishes, and that Armenia needs to be proactive.

        Armenia News -


        • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

          Originally posted by HyeSocialist View Post
          Azerbaijan Unable, Or Unwilling, To Pay For Russian Weapons: Reports

          Russia's senior defense industry official has made an unexpected visit to Baku, as a Russian newspaper reports that Azerbaijan is refusing to pay for a shipment of Russian arms.

          "The fall in oil prices has affected everyone, and Azerbaijan is no exception," an unnamed Russian defense industry official told the newspaper Kommersant. As a result, a shipment of weapons ordered several years ago by Azerbaijan is currently sitting in port waiting for payment, the official said.

          An early version of a story on the Sputnik Azerbaijan site cited an Azerbaijani military expert backing that up, but some time after it was published all references to Baku's failure to pay were erased.

          In an apparent effort to sort out the situation, Russia's deputy prime minister in charge of defense industry, Dmitry Rogozin, arrived in Baku for a previously unannounced visit on Wednesday night. On Thursday, Rogozin posted a photo with him and Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev on his facebook page with the caption "Following positive negotiations with the leader of friendly Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev." There was no indication of what may have resulted from the positive negotiations.

          While Azerbaijan's budget problems are real, "its problems paying for the shipment may be both objective, as well as a bargaining position in negotiations with Russia," Kommersant noted. In particular, Azerbaijan has objected to a $200 million credit that Russia offered Armenia last year in order to acquire weaponry. Armenia and Azerbaijan are locked in a struggle over the disputed territory of Nagorno Karabakh. Armenia, a formal ally of Russia, gets discounted arms from Moscow, while oil-rich Azerbaijan is one of the Russian defense industry's best customers.

          Azerbaijan has made a number of arms purchases from Russia that it has estimated at $4 billion, and most of that has been delivered but there are still some tanks, infantry fighting vehicles and artillery systems yet to be delivered, according to Kommersant's source.

          "Russia's negotiation position will be fairly harsh, since the situation has arisen through no fault of Russia's," the newspaper noted. It quoted Russian military expert Ruslan Pukhov as suggesting that "you can always find a compromise... we could either stop the delivery of equipment and sell it to another country, or defer payment." Oh, to have been a fly on the well in the Rogozon-Aliyev meeting...

          By far, the greatest thing I'v read all week.
          How awesome would it be if Russia said ok since you won't pay we will give these weapons to Armenia instead!
          Hayastan or Bust.


          • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

            Exercises of the troops of radiation, chemical and biological protection


            • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

              Obama's reconciliation moment

              By S. Rob Sobhani
              March 3, 2016

              [S. Rob Sobhani is CEO of Caspian Group Holdings, LLC.]

              President Obama will host and convene the Fourth Nuclear Security
              Summit beginning on March 31 at the Washington Convention Center.
              Among the scheduled attendees are two leaders who rarely get together
              because their nations have been at loggerheads for decades.

              While it is important for world leaders to agree on how best to keep
              nuclear weapons out of the hands of rogue nations or terrorist groups,
              the presence of Presidents Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan and Serzh
              Sargsyan of Armenia offers a rare yet historic moment for President
              Obama to take the lead in solving one of the most troublesome
              conflicts left from the break-up off the Soviet Empire. Regional
              experts have taken to calling a seemingly intractable dispute between
              the two nations over ownership of the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh
              the "frozen conflict." In 1991, full-scale war broke out between
              Armenia and Azerbaijan and despite a cease-fire in 1994, border
              skirmishes and fighting continues to this day, over a million people
              have been displaced and Armenian forces occupy close to 20 percent of
              Azerbaijan's territory.

              The United States, along with Russia and France, co-chairs the Minsk
              Group tasked with resolving this conflict. Moscow has treated Armenia
              as its own and provided her government military support that has
              prolonged the conflict while Washington has been too busy with
              distractions in the Middle East to take a lead role in establishing a
              lasting peace between Yerevan and Baku.

              President Obama may well be in a position to craft a breakthrough
              while the two leaders are in Washington that could create a new
              beginning for the people of Armenia and Azerbaijan by leading a robust
              diplomatic initiative to find a permanent solution fair to both sides.

              As one of the few countries that have recognized the Armenian genocide
              of the last century, France is in a position play a key role in a U.S.
              diplomatic initiative. Indeed, Washington and Paris are very well
              positioned to serve as honest brokers urging Armenia to vie for a
              permanent peace with its neighbor. The message from President
              Obama--and President Francois Hollande--to the Armenian people is
              simple: the best way to remember the memory of those 1.5 million
              killed by the Ottoman Empire is to build a vibrant, dynamic and
              inclusive Armenia at peace with its neighbors.

              Indeed, despite millions of dollars that continues to flow into
              Armenia from its diaspora, Armenia's GDP per capita is stagnant. Today
              it stands at $3500 and its GDP and would be much lower but for some
              $10 billion in diaspora remittances. Azerbaijan's economy meanwhile,
              fueled in part by its oil, has grown at an average annual rate of 12
              percent, allowing millions of Azeris to enter the middle class with
              the nation's poverty rate plummeting from 47 percent to 8 percent
              according to the UNDP.

              Despite these differences, both Armenia and Azerbaijan would benefit
              from a peace dividend. An American-led diplomatic resolution of the
              conflict would unleash growth in a post-conflict environment. Trade
              and commerce between Armenia and Azerbaijan--two cultures with a deep
              entrepreneurial spirit written into their DNA--would have an immediate
              impact on the lives of millions.

              George Clemenceau once said: "It is far easier to make war than to
              make peace," a fact that is clear in the Middle East. But the
              inability to solve all problems everywhere shouldn't lead to
              unwillingness to solve those that can in fact be solved.

              Mr. Obama should work with the two leaders to craft a plan that will
              lead to the withdrawal of Armenian forces from territories it occupies
              within Azerbaijan, an agreement from both sides to provide autonomy to
              the region of Nagorno-Karabakh so that Armenians within the region
              will not have to fear Baku even if U.S., French and Russian
              peacekeepers are needed at least in the short term with the costs of
              such a force paid by cash-rich Azerbaijan.

              Further, a settlement might well include an Armenia-Azerbaijan
              Reconciliation and Reconstruction Fund that would invest in
              infrastructure projects between the two countries and
              Azerbaijan-financed extension of its gas export pipeline to Europe
              through Armenia.

              And finally, a Cross-Culture Fund perhaps headed by the first lady of
              Azerbaijan, Mehriban Aliyeva and the first Lady of Armenia, Rita
              Sargsyan, with the explicit goal of rebuilding the religious tolerance
              that existed between Armenians and Azerbaijanis before 1991.

              The key is to such a deal is American leadership. Mr. Obama needs to
              persuade the presidents of both Armenia and Azerbaijan that the United
              States won't turn its back on them and that a workable solution can
              satisfy both nations, allow their citizens to live in peace and allow
              them to at long last develop the trust to be good and cooperative
              neighbors in a troubled region of the world.

              Holocaust survivor Elie Weisel once said that "peace is not God's gift
              to his creatures; peace is our gift to each other." By being a leader
              of consequence, President Obama can give the gift of peace to Armenia
              and Azerbaijan.

              Hayastan or Bust.


              • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

                Originally posted by Haykakan View Post
                How awesome would it be if Russia said ok since you won't pay we will give these weapons to Armenia instead!
                That's not going to happen.
                General Antranik (1865-1927): I am not a nationalist. I recognize only one nation, the nation of the oppressed.


                • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

                  It was just a game to get SOCAR to lower gas prices.
                  Georgia has chosen Azerbaijan for additional gas supplies over Gazprom and Iranian gas transits through Armenia!
                  Last edited by armnuke; 03-04-2016, 08:07 AM.


                  • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

                    Armenian Army-2A36 "Giatsint-B"


                    • Re: Nagorno-Karabagh: Military Balance Between Armenia & Azerbaijan

                      The Karabakh Dimension of the Russian-Turkish Crisis

                      The flare-up between Russia and Turkey following the incident with the downed Russian military jet [1] has adversely affected the dynamics of the Middle East crisis. The tension that has arisen between the two countries can have far-reaching consequences for the Caucasus region.

                      The situation is being aggravated by the ongoing escalation of tensions along the delimitation line in Nagorno-Karabakh. In early December 2015, the Azerbaijani side began using tanks, which it had never done since entering into a truce in May 1994), having previously used howitzers, mortars and multiple artillery rocket systems. Given the exacerbation of relations between Moscow and Ankara, the Karabakh dimension of the Russian-Turkish crisis is assuming a new significance.

                      Armenia amid the Russian-Turkish crisis

                      Relations between Turkey and Armenia are already tense. They are burdened by many historical problems, the genocide of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire during World War I above all. The countries have no diplomatic relations. Turkey openly supports Azerbaijan in the Karabakh conflict and maintains a transport and communication blockade against Armenia, which it imposed in the early 1990s.

                      The dramatic developments in the Middle East and the crisis in Russian-Turkish relations only accelerated the modernization of the Russian military presence in Armenia and strengthened cooperation between the two countries in the defense sector.
                      Even before the incident with the Su-24 bomber, the Caucasus region was within the orbit of tensions between Russia and Turkey, exacerbated by differences in Ankara’s and Moscow's approaches to developments in Syria and Iraq. This is particularly true of Armenia. It is the only country in the region that neighbors the Middle East, is a strategic ally of Russia and a member of the CSTO, which, in accordance with bilateral and multilateral agreements, is obliged to provide assistance in the event of external aggression. Russia’s 102nd Military Base, the closest to the Syrian conflict zone, is stationed on the territory of Armenia, and includes, among other things, an air component (Armenian Erebuni Airport is home to a squadron of Mikoyan MiG-29 fighters).

                      The Syrian campaign and the growing Russia-Turkey stand-off have already directly affected Armenia in military terms. In early October 2015, Ankara rather nervously reacted to a breach of its airspace by Russian fighter jets on combat missions in northern Syria, and on October 6 and 7, Turkish military helicopters under the pretense of an accident violated the Armenian border, which was guarded by Russian border guards.

                      Vladimir Evseev:
                      Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict: Minsk Process as
                      a Path to Settlement
                      Amidst the dramatic escalation of tensions in relations with Ankara, many experts have been tempted to interpret the above facts as part of an intensified strengthening of Russia’s military presence in Armenia which is directed against Turkey. In reality, however, these military-political measures had been planned long before. The dramatic developments in the Middle East and the crisis in Russian-Turkish relations only accelerated the modernization of the Russian military presence in Armenia and strengthened cooperation between the two countries in the defense sector. A significant strengthening of the Russian military presence in Armenia is so far unlikely, provided, of course, that there is no force majeure clash of arms between Russia and Turkey. Armenia can hardly be suspected of leaning towards Turkey, especially in the latter’s conflict with Russia. The Armenian leadership has not hesitated to make several statements condemning Ankara’s actions.

                      During the CSTO summit in Moscow in late December 2015, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan [2] called on all members of the Organization to agree on a common position on the incident with the Russian military jet and on the escalation of the Karabakh conflict zone. However, in both cases, the reaction of other CSTO member states, particularly the Central Asian ones, was a far cry from Moscow’s and Yerevan’s position.

                      Despite its undisguised pro-Turkish leanings, Azerbaijan most likely will be reluctant to openly support Turkey in the latter’s confrontation with Russia, Azerbaijan seems unlikely to resume large-scale hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh today.
                      Thus, Armenia appeared to be virtually the only CSTO country to publicly support the position of Russia against Turkey. This notwithstanding, Yerevan is not at all interested in a further escalation of the conflict between Moscow and Ankara. Any open confrontation can turn Armenia’s borders (the only place where Russian and Turkish border guards are officially stationed face to face) into a field for their power struggle. At that, the crisis in relations with Turkey is quite likely to bring the positions of Yerevan and Moscow on a number of substantive issues of the regional policy closer to one another. And this is true for not just for relations between Moscow and Ankara (Armenia has traditionally kept a wary eye on the post-Soviet dynamics of Russian-Turkish cooperation). It is not improbable that the Russian-Turkish crisis will affect Russia’s position in holding up the precarious balance in its relationship with Armenia and Azerbaijan regarding the Karabakh conflict. Moscow is unlikely to harbor any illusions about the sympathies of the Azerbaijani authorities and the public in relation to the crisis between Russia and Turkey.

                      The mounting Russian-Turkish crisis has had a direct impact on the Armenian internal political situation, causing anxiety among politicians and the public at large. The polarization of positions of proponents of various vectors of Armenia's foreign policy orientation is growing. The public debate about the country's stance towards the crisis that is unfolding between Moscow and Ankara is remarkable for its wide range of opinions. Nevertheless, Yerevan’s official position on the Karabakh issue remains steadfast.

                      Azerbaijan: Hobson’s choice?

                      REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin
                      Arif Asalyoglu:
                      A New Page in Relations with Moscow, or Life
                      after 24 November 2015
                      There is little doubt that the Russian-Turkish crisis has created no less a problem for Azerbaijan. Turkey and Azerbaijan appear to be the closest Turkic states in ethnocultural and linguistic terms. Traditionally Turkish officials, just as they had done in previous decades, have made statements in support of Baku’s position in the Karabakh conflict. It is precisely this that has led many observers to interpret the dramatic deterioration of the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh, including the unprecedented December aggravation of tensions on the delimitation line between the Azerbaijani army and the troops of unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, as a result of direct influence that Ankara has exerted on Baku.

                      However, despite its undisguised pro-Turkish leanings, Azerbaijan most likely will be reluctant to openly support Turkey in the latter’s confrontation with Russia, which has impressive enough political and economic leverage on Baku. At that, Azerbaijan seems unlikely to resume large-scale hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh today, when the probability of Moscow’s open involvement in the conflict on the Armenian side is greater than ever. Russia is demonstrating a determination to defend its interests in the faraway Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean, which is thousands kilometers away, so any renewal of the armed conflict behind its back in its near-abroad countries will hardly be ignored. A new round of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh can be perceived by Moscow as a direct result of Turkey’s intrigues, even if Turkey, in fact, has nothing to do with it.

                      A new round of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh can be perceived by Moscow as a direct result of Turkey’s intrigues.
                      At the same time, Russia’s open military support for Armenia due to its clear-cut obligations in the field of security may well be a welcome opportunity for the Kremlin to “punish” Erdogan and take revenge for the Russian jet that was shot down by the Turks. No wonder that amidst the Russian-Turkish crisis military-technical cooperation between Armenia and Russia has intensified. An agreement to grant Armenia a $200 million loan for the purchase of advanced Russian weapons gave new momentum to this cooperation. In early February 2016, Moscow published a list of weapons that it intends to sell to Armenia. These agreements do not cover the full range of the Armenian-Russian military-technical cooperation (other arms supplies under other contracts are expected as well) and stabilize the military-technical balance of the parties to the Karabakh conflict. It is hoped that Baku is fully aware of all the dangers inherent in “unfreezing” the conflict at such an explosive time.

                      Nevertheless, there are a number of additional factors that may escalate the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh. These factors relate not much to the dynamics of the Russian-Turkish relations, as to deterioration of the financial, economic and socio-political situation in Azerbaijan. This process accelerated at the end of 2015 and was caused by a continued decline in oil prices for the second year running, while the sale of oil (together with gas) making up the lion’s share of Azerbaijan’s direct and indirect revenues (about 90 percent of Azerbaijan’s exports). The official foreign exchange reserves of the Central Bank of Azerbaijan, which in January 2015 amounted to $15.052 billion, declined by $5 billion within a year. The continued rapid fall of the manat is fraught with negative consequences for internal political stability in Azerbaijan.

                      Karo Sahakyan/PAN Photo
                      Sergey Minasyan:
                      Armenia and Russia: Pragmatics and
                      No matter how banal and simplistic it may sound, the ongoing escalation of unrest on the front line appears to be a very handy tool for the Azerbaijani authorities to distract public attention from the domestic problems. However, the worsened financial and economic situation in Azerbaijan was one of the leading causes, but not the one and only reason for the intensification of the Karabakh conflict. The latter is also due to a quite rational and long-term strategy of the country’s leadership. Baku constantly uses escalation on the front line to exert pressure on the Armenian side and the mediators in the negotiation process, the OSCE Minsk Group (Russia, France, USA) in particular. The purpose of Azerbaijan is to gain one-sided concessions, and at the same time to give weight to its threats of resuming a full-scale war.

                      Against this backdrop, the worsening of relations between Russia and Turkey does exacerbate the regional situation around the Karabakh conflict, while creating additional risks and narrowing the scope of possible political maneuvering for Baku. However, the background of the Russian-Turkish crisis is unlikely to serve as an accelerator in the near future and contribute to the resumption of large-scale hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh.

                      * * *

                      Yerevan is not at all interested in a further escalation of the conflict between Moscow and Ankara.
                      Regardless of the catastrophic deterioration of the situation in the Middle East and surrounding regions, the main military and political factors that support a relative truce and deter Azerbaijan from resuming large-scale hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh continue to have an effect.

                      First of all, the matter at hand is the relative balance of the military potential of the conflicting parties, as well as the agreed position of the OSCE Minsk Group, which has not been affected by the tensions between Russia and the West. Therefore, should Azerbaijan resume large-scale hostilities, it will fail to win a swift victory, while the losses in case of a probable defeat (amidst an unambiguously negative and coordinated reaction from the international community) will be disastrous. However, this does not eliminate the possibility of escalating border clashes, but the prospects for the unleashing of a full-scale war seem to be virtually brought to naught.

                      Alongside this, the resumption of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh is unlikely to align with the interests of the parties to the Russian-Turkish crisis. Russia, being involved in the conflict in Ukraine and Syria and content on the whole with the current status quo in the Caucasus region, has no interest in triggering another conflict on its southern border. It should also be noted that Russia has obligations to Armenia in the sphere of mutual defense and security.

                      As for Turkey, despite the continued social euphoria from R. Erdogan’s actions, Ankara rather seeks to minimize the damage caused by the conflict with Russia in the wake of the Su-24 bomber incident, the imposition of sanctions by Russia and countermeasures. A further escalation of the Russian-Turkish confrontation appears to be more preferable for Turkey on its southern borders. Ankara perceives them as its own “near-abroad,” which is geographically and strategically more important and useful for keeping its national interests. In contrast to Syria and Iraq, the Caucasus region offers Russia a better military-strategic starting environment and more motivation to respond.

                      Last edited by armnuke; 03-04-2016, 10:50 AM.