Transit intrigues of Moscow and Yerevan against Baku

News.Az reprints an article by political analyst and MP, Rasim Musabekov from Vesti.Az

The secret side of Sargsyan's visit to Georgia

On December 25-26, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan paid a visit to Georgia, which, according to media reports, turned out to be extremely empty. Among the negotiating topics, the most important was the provision of a stable transit of Armenian cargo and passengers in the Russian direction. The day before, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili reported on the signed agreement with the Swiss company SGS which will ensure the monitoring of goods both transit and delivered by Armenia or Russia, saying that "... in force majeure this corridor through Tskhinvali (according to Roksky Tunnel) can be used by Turkey, Armenia and other countries."

Some Russian media outlets hastened to present this statement as a breakthrough of the transport blockade by Armenia  and the crisis of the Azerbaijani-Georgian strategic partnership. This interpretation is clearly provocative and premature. After all, it is decisive here to determine the force majeure situation. If this means a natural disaster or man-made disaster, then there is nothing to object. If the closure of the Larsky transition as a result of snowfalls and falls, due to which the trucks with Armenian vegetables and fruits or buses with passengers were shut down, this would mean an expanded interpretation of the issue that Armenians need.

Although President Sargsyan raised the issue of opening a railway through Abkhazia during his visit to Georgia, this conversation remains pointless. First, the volumes of possible transportation are so small that they do not justify not only the necessary investments to restore the roads that have not been used for a quarter of a century, but they can not even justify the costs of their operation. It seems inconceivable and completely unacceptable for Georgia itself, as well as for Azerbaijan transportation of uranium fuel elements and equipment for Mitsamor nuclear power plant or Russian military cargoes along this route. After all, the nuclear power plant in Armenia poses a huge threat for the entire South Caucasus, and all neighboring countries, including the European Union, insist on its rapid closure. As for military transport, the Russian military base in Armenia does not have the potential to contain Turkey (for what it is supposedly intended), and in the event of a repeat of the events of August 2008, it could well hit the rear of Georgia itself through the Armenian-populated Javakhetia.

In general, the very fact of Georgia's submission of transit for the connection of Armenia with Russia through the territory of its disappeared autonomies, looks abnormal. Russia, in defiance of international law, recognized the independence of the separatist regimes in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, illegally deploying its military contingents there. Armenians regularly vote within the walls of the UN, the Council of Europe and other international organizations in solidarity with Russia against the territorial integrity of Georgia. Therefore, I would venture to assume that the project of the transit of Armenian cargo through Abkhazia and South Ossetia will not go beyond talking. Let me remind you how much talk was made last year about the transit of Iranian gas through Armenia to Georgia, but even SWAP (that is, not a real transit, but a replacement operation) of a couple of hundred million cubic meters of gas was not achieved.

It is clear that the leadership of Georgia, consistently leading it to NATO and the European Union, is forced to maneuver in the face of the continuing pressure from Moscow. Obviously, Tbilisi does not want to embitter and turn Yerevan into an outspoken enemy. In turn, Russia and Armenia are playing communication intrigues, in the hope of knocking Georgia off the western vector and destroying the hated strategic axis "Baku-Tbilisi-Ankara". 

Therefore, one does not need to come across these tricks, closely monitor the situation and not rush to public demarches. We have invested too much in strategic projects in Georgia. Thanks to the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan, Baku-Supsa, Southern Gas Corridor, Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway lines, they have become bridges connecting the Caspian and Black Seas, and in a broader context, Asia and Europe. I believe that neither in Baku nor in Tbilisi will they put at risk a strategic partnership that gives both countries a noticeable geopolitical weight and will be able to resolve the emerging issues through a confidential dialogue.


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