(Saturday, September 5)
“Zhamanak” comments on President Serzh Sarkisian’s upcoming talks in Moscow with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. “Judging from the fact that the trip was announced by the Kremlin’s press office, we can suggest that the talks will take place at Moscow’s initiative,” writes the paper. It says Moscow probably has “some worries and discontent related to Armenia.” It also notes that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov visited Baku a few days ago just as unexpectedly.
“Zhoghovurd” believes that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and recent days’ escalation of fighting in the conflict zone will be the main subject of Putin’s latest talks with Sarkisian. The paper recalls that it was Putin who helped to end an even more serious upsurge in Armenian-Azerbaijani fighting in August 2014 by organizing an urgent trilateral meeting with Sarkisian and Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev. “Now that the situation on the frontlines is again very tense, Foreign Minister Lavrov has just returned to Moscow from Baku and briefed his boss on agreements with Aliyev, and Armenia is holding unprecedented military exercises simulating a full-scale, war Serzh Sarkisian is again summoned to Moscow,” it says. It fears that the latest Sarkisian-Putin talks will be fraught with “severe and dangerous developments” for Armenia.
Interviewed by “168 Zham,” Matthew Bryza, a former U.S. co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, insists that neither Russia nor Azerbaijan is interested in a further escalation of tensions in the Karabakh conflict zone. “The Kremlin does not want the conflict to be solved, preferring instead a certain degree of tension in the region,” Bryza says. “At the same time, it realizes that a renewed war would be extremely risky. After all, Russia is being subjected to international sanctions due to its military aggression in eastern Ukraine. Azerbaijan too does not want a full-scale war, realizing just how risky it would be.”
“Chorrord Ishkhanutyun” claims that former President Robert Kocharian is angry at Serzh Sarkisian because the latter is in no mood to quit power in 2018 and thus pave the way for Kocharian’s return to power. The paper claims that Kocharian must also be angry with himself for not engineering in the past the kind of constitutional reform that is now pushed forward by his presidential successor.