The agreements reached during the recent visit of Ilham Aliyev to Pakistan agreement on the sale Baku Pakistani ballistic missiles will cause a new wave of competition weapons, which continues in the region for many years and is dangerous.
If in the years of the Karabakh war Arsenal sides were very modest, now the region from the point of view of the weapons is over saturated and over loaded. According to specialized in this area of structures, Armenia is the most militarized country in the region. And Azerbaijan, according to the Stockholm International Institute for peace studies, took 21st place in the list of the 40 largest importers of weapons. Over the last five years Azerbaijan imported twenty times more weapons than Armenia. Although most of these weapons Baku purchased from Russia, in recent years Azerbaijan in military-political sphere have sharply stepped up cooperation with such countries that produce weapons, Israel and Pakistan.
Together with Israel, has been established in Azerbaijan the production of unmanned aerial vehicles. The same Israel Azerbaijan wants to purchase a system “Iron dome”, while the Pakistan military fighter jets JF-17 and ballistic missiles 300-500 km range. Against the backdrop of an arms race, responding to artacho(Karabakh) to Azerbaijan border has been tense. The ceasefire is violated more than is saved. Information from the frontline like a military chronicle. On the other hand, are tightening their stance of the Armenian side of the conflict (ed., Armenia and Karabakh). About the possibility of using the Russian systems “Iskander” say the leaders of the two Armenian States, as well as the Minister of defense of Armenia Vigen Sargsyan. If once was said about settlement of the problem through compromises, it has now become to spread information that up to the end of the year at least one state may recognize Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh Republic).
Amid the increasing likelihood of a new military Armenian-Azerbaijani clashes Azerbaijan, deepening cooperation in military-industrial sphere with Israel and Pakistan, makes clear steps towards reducing its dependence on Russia. This means a gradual weakening of, and therefore control, of Russia in the region. Since 2010, when Russia on the basis of the contract took on the responsibility of providing the Armenian army with the modern arms and simultaneously began to sell arms to Azerbaijan in large quantities, Moscow was the main balancing force in the region. The arms race at this time, with relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan, in a sense, moved on the field of relations between Russia and Azerbaijan.
Therefore, while Russia is the main supplier of arms to Baku, the dependence of this country from Moscow persisted. Because the supply of arms carries with it issues of maintenance, training and so forth, that can serve as levers of political influence. Now Russia has no other serious lever of influence on Azerbaijan in addition to the military component of bilateral relations. And if the lever starts to weaken, and signs of this are already visible, Azerbaijan is under Russian control, threatening to become an unpredictable factor for the safety of Moscow and the Moscow region. Therefore, it is no coincidence that the Russian Pro-government media actively circulate statements by the top leadership of Armenia and Artsakh about the possibility of using against Azerbaijan “Iskander”. This can be considered a manifestation of anxiety of the Russian side in connection with the actions of Aliyev’s administration, which aims to reduce dependence on Russia.
According to former Armenian defense Minister Vagharshak Harutiunian, a possible weakening of Russia’s positions in the region against the backdrop of an arms race is the true path leading to war. “Azerbaijan is now working with Russia, Pakistan and Israel, to solve specific problems from the point of view of Baku. Israel buys blah BLAH and wants to purchase the system “Iron dome”, while the Pakistan — ballistic medium-range missiles. Deepening military-technical relations with Russia, on the one hand, it is modernizing its weapons, but on the other hand, aims to spoil Armenian-Russian relations,” in an interview with the Agency noted Harutyunyan.
At the same time, from the point of view of the Karabakh conflict, Vagharshak Harutyunyan considers questionable effectiveness of ballistic missiles and missile systems, purchased from Pakistan and Israel. “Iron dome will not be able to close the sky of Azerbaijan “Iskander”, which conduct combat duty in the Armenian army, and in ballistic missiles Baku does not need. Baku can fire Yerevan from Nakhichevan. It’s just questionable expenses from a military and strategic point of view, the meaning of which is to find a PR answer to the “Iskander”,” – said the former Minister, pointing to the fact that Pakistan and Israel may not sell such weapons to Azerbaijan without the permission of the United States. “And the U.S. seeks to weaken Russia’s influence in the region. Therefore, the long-term aim of the military transactions clear,” he concluded.