By Ilya Roubanis, PhD
The main diplomatic effect of the 2020 Azerbaijani-Armenian conflict is the compartmentalisation of the diplomatic agenda: the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh question is no longer a precondition to the “normalisation” of the Azerbaijani-Armenian relationship. Focusing exclusively on Nagorno-Karabakh, the Ukrainian war undermines the viability of the Minsk process because Russia cannot cooperate with the West to resolve a conflict while being involved in a proxy standoff with its diplomatic counterparts. In this context, Armenia’s singular economic, diplomatic, and strategic dependence on Russia reduces its ability to set the negotiating agenda and avoid a binding arbitration that can lead to significant concessions. Since the Russian-mediated ceasefire agreement of November 2020, Yerevan is no longer the guarantor of Karabakh’s security; Russia is. However, a triumphant stance by Azerbaijan may be self-defeating. By undermining the credibility of its diplomatic counterpart, Baku loses the ability to build a credible and lasting peace settlement.
lya Roubanis (PhD, European University Institute) is a British European Areas Studies analyst of Greek heritage. He is a fellow of the the International Relations Institute in Athens (IDIS). For over a decade, he has worked in the South Caucasus as a government affairs consultant, risk analyst, and journalist.
To quote this article, please use the following reference: I. Roubanis (2022), “The State of Play in Nagorno Karabakh & the Scope for Second-Track Diplomatic Initiatives” https://crisesobservatory.es/the-state-of-play-in-nagorno-karabakh–the-scope-for-second-track-diplomatic-initiatives/
The OCC publishes a wide range of opinions that are meant to help our readers think of International Relations. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and neither the OCC nor Saint Louis University can be held responsible for any use which may be made of the opinion of the author and/or the information contained therein.