The historical root of the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute
The Nagorno-Karabakh war began in 1988 January and February, due to the Armenians irrelevant territorial claims, which lead to the occupation of 20% of Azerbaijani territories including Nagorno-Karabakh along with seven adjacent districts. Since January 1988, Armenians backed by the leadership of the USSR began the mass deportation of Azerbaijanis from their historical lands. In subsequent periods, there has been mass deportation, bloody massacre, and Khojaly genocide against the Azerbaijan nation. In later years, to prevent war Bishkek Protocol was accepted and it was a provisional ceasefire agreement that Russia brokered a ceasefire between Armenia and Azerbaijan.
To date, the ceasefire way has not been successful, as the goals of the two sides have not been met:
• Armenia occupied 20% of Azerbaijan’s territory, still demands independence for Karabakh
• Azerbaijan demands its right to self-determination, the end of the occupation, and the return of Karabakh along with seven adjacent districts to Azerbaijan.
Illogical solution models left Nagorno-Karabakh conflict unresolved
What are the offers of three plans on the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict? In order to solve the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh, the co-chairs of OSCE Minsk group have given “proposals”.
Fig 1. Offered solution models for Nagorno-Karabakh dispute.
The “package” solution plan was formed at the first meeting in Moscow (called Moscow meeting) of the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs after the Lisbon summit;
I Stage according to Package proposal
• Withdrawal of Armenian troops from the Azerbaijan territories outside Karabakh (except the “Lachin corridor”);
• To achieve a return in stages of refugees to their former homes;
• Deployment of peacekeeping forces and ending up the conflict;
II Stage based on Package proposal
• To consider the final status of Nagorno-Karabakh
• Primary agreement in conjunction with all of the disputable issues;
• Gathering and then considering all of the arguable problems in the package model plan including Nagorno-Karabakh.
However, the model was rejected by the Armenian side, because the Armenian side was afraid of…
- Successful “Energy and Nation Diplomacy” of Azerbaijan;
- In subsequent periods it would be in favor of Azerbaijan;
- Azerbaijan’s intentions and positions were right and fair.
- Armenia doesn’t know exactly what it wants?! (NOTE: stick its head in confusion in face of Azerbaijan)
The Minsk Group co-chairmen offered a new solution plan called “the step by step” plan because of the failure of “the package” plan.
I Phase of “Stage by Stage” Proposal
In initial periods…
to sign a primary agreement;
to achieve a return of six districts (Kelbajar, Agdam, Jabrail, Fizuli, Gubadli, Zangilan) including Nagorno-Karabakh; (except for Lachin corridor)
A return of refugees to their former homes
To eliminate the blockade of Armenia in occupied territories
II Phase of “Stage by Stage” proposal
- In subsequent periods…
- To conclude the second treaty;
- To take into account the Lachin corridor combining Armenia with Nagorno-Karabakh in favor of Azerbaijan
- Giving Nagorno-Karabakh interim status within the supervision of Azerbaijan recognized by the International system.
The given proposal was an accurate approach towards Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan supported the legal prism and position of “the step-by-step” model-plan, as it was not a threat to the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. However, the given plan was rejected by the Armenian side.
Aborted “Common state” proposal
The 1998 common state solution plan was reflected in the document entitled to an “an agreement on the status of Nagorno-Karabakh, which was formed by the co-chairs of the Minsk Group on 7 November 1998. This plan was the idea of the former Foreign Minister of Russia, E. Primakov. The common state model was established per the resolution of the Transnistria and Abkhazia “problems”
In the common state model, the following were offered below.
- To establish the Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh within the borders of Azerbaijan, especially, forming a confederate system or a state surrounded by the territory;
- Regarding the establishment of a confederate state, to create a “Special Committee” consisting of the representatives of both sides’ presidents, prime ministers, and parliaments to structure commissions and committees both in Baku and Khankendi (so-called absurd Stepanakert)
- To set up and strengthen relationship with foreign countries, international and regional organizations through the mediation of proper representatives of Nagorno-Karabakh
- Some special rights and privileges have to be given to Nagorno-Karabakh, at the same time, these privileges have to be recognized by Azerbaijan.
- The forming of the constitution of Nagorno-Karabakh and to be accepted by its people (Which people, the so called Armenian people of this region?!)
- An agreement on the States of Nagorno-Karabakh has to be illustrated in the constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan and these documents do not collide with each other on the implementation of their affinities
- To create its “FTZ” (Free Trade Zone) as well as its currency unit. By using both its own and Azerbaijani monetary unit for providing trade relationship in the territory
Common State Model was considered a “Stillborn alliance model” because, “the 1998 common state” model-plan was a huge step backward in comparison with “the package” solution method. According to the model, Azerbaijan would left behind and trampled down as a second country. Therefore, the Common State Plan is considered a void model, because it would lead to formalizing vast separation between Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh by putting under threat Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and sovereign rights, which was opposed to Helsinki Final Act /2 out of 10 points/ sovereign equality, respect for the rights inherent in sovereignty territorial integrity of States. It could be mostly inclined to weakening the positions of Azerbaijan in its ancient land – Karabakh. Therefore, the common state model was discarded by Azerbaijan, because of putting under threat Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity and sovereign rights.
Other solution models? – Comparative analysis
It has to be noted that the models such as Aland, Trieste, Kosovo, etc. do not answer Azerbaijan’s aims and positions concerning Nagorno-Karabakh. Let’s investigate the Aland model as a proposed solution plan for the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute. Aland consists of a group of Islands around 6757 it is an archipelago. It is also called Scandinavian Karabakh. This island turned into a discord of apple between Sweden and Finland in the Baltic Sea. What is the fate of the Aland model for today?
– Finland provided the security of the Swedish in this area,
– Use of Swedish language in this area;
– Mutual relationship between them, peace, security, and cooperation.
What are the differences between Aland and Nagorno-Karabakh?
1. It did not happen or engender any bloody conflict or war in this area but, Nagorno Karabakh has observed many bloody wars, genocide, mass massacre, that Armenia committed those massacres against Azerbaijanis residing in Nagorno-Karabakh.
2. In some cases, it has been said that Aland Island would be given to Sweden, why because of its strong economic possibilities than Finland. If it is so, Nagorno Karabakh also has to be returned to Azerbaijan. As the country possesses not only large-scale economic, political, and social possibilities, and rich natural resources but also a strong nation and oil diplomacy as well!.
Take the Trieste model, which is the center of Julia-Venice’s autonomous province. It has got its emblem, flag, legislative and administrative bodies. Both Serbian and Italian monetary units are in process. It is possible to use both of them. It does have also an international treaty about FTZ. From the administrative aspect, it belongs to Italy, but a common city of both Serbia and Italy. So, from this perspective, this is not suitable for Azerbaijan first, it is not a territory model it is merely a city model. Besides, we do (Azerbaijani side) never accept Nagorno-Karabakh as a common or a joint area with Armenia. Because Karabakh is the ancestral land of Azerbaijan. From the international law, it is ostensible that breaching a country’s boundaries is a huge threat and international criminal against it. Armenia’s occupation of Azerbaijani lands directly contradicts the principles of international law. Armenia itself is well aware that Nagorno-Karabakh is and will always remain an integral part of Azerbaijan.