Analysis, Featured, Middle East

Q&A: The Conflict Between Azerbaijan and Armenia


“The President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev said in a speech broadcasted on state television on the evening of Sunday 4/10/2020 that Armenia must set a timetable for withdrawal from the Nagorno-Karabakh region before stopping the confrontation that took place in it about a week ago… Aliyev considered that controlling the city of Gabriel yesterday, Sunday, is a lesson for Armenia and its supporters, and it should take note from it, as he put it.” (Al-Jazeera, 5/10/2020).

Violent clashes broke out between Azerbaijan and Armenia on the morning of 27/9/2020 on a scale that has not happened since the start of ceasefire between the two sides in 1994, although they renewed from time to time in limited and extensive clashes sometimes, as what took place in 2016. Turkey did not support Azerbaijan militarily in all these previous clashes. But this time, when Turkey announced its support for Azerbaijan, it seems that it has certain goals!

What are these goals? And why did Turkey intervene heavily? What is the position of the Minsk group, especially its three leaders: (the United States, Russia and France)? All thanks and appreciation to you.


To find out the reality of what is happening, we will review the following matters:

1- Azerbaijan announced that Armenia has launched a large-scale offensive on its lands on the morning of 27/9/2020; the Azerbaijani Ministry of Defense stated in a statement that (“The Armenian fires have caused civilian casualties, in addition to causing great damage to the civilian infrastructure in a number of villages that were subjected to heavy Armenian shelling.” It has stated that, “Its forces launched a counter-attack and managed to destroy a large number of Armenian military facilities and vehicles at the depth of the front line, including 12 Russian anti-aircraft missile systems (OSA)…” Al-Jazeera 27/9/2020).

The Azerbaijani parliament approved declaring a state of war in some cities and regions and imposing martial law in the areas of clashes. On the other hand, Armenia declared a state of war, and even put on its official page a picture of a monk carrying a machine gun with a cross dangling from his neck, the sign of Shirk (polytheism), indicating that they are fighting a crusade war against Muslims. Armenia’s Prime Minister, Nikol Pashinyan, announced his country’s position in a speech: (“Azerbaijan has declared war on its people, and that it does not rule out that the escalation in the region exceeds the borders of the region and threatens international security. Turkey’s behavior is fraught with devastating consequences for the southern Caucasus and urges the international community to ensure that Turkey does not interfere in the conflict between Baku and Yerevan over the Karabakh region since 1991…” previous source).

2- Azerbaijan has shown that the battles this time are serious and the war is decisive. On 30/9/2020, Azerbaijani President, Ilham Aliyev, said: “The negotiations on Karabakh were not feasible and there is no need for new calls for dialogue, expressing Azerbaijan’s determination to restore its territorial integrity and that the Azerbaijani army was able to achieve successes on the field, during its recent operations in the disputed region. No one can force the Azerbaijani forces to withdraw from the sites they controlled. The withdrawal of the Armenian forces is the only condition proposed by Azerbaijan and if Yerevan applies it, the fighting will stop.” And he said, “We have one condition: complete, unconditional and without delay withdrawal of Armenian forces from our territory. If the Armenian government accepts… the battles will stop and the bloodshed will stop…” (Al-Jazeera; Russia Today, 30/9/2020) It appears that he is confident in the Turkish support, thinking that this support is sincere and that it will liberate the land for him.

3- The clashes renewed this year on 12/7/2020 and lasted 3 days, and stopped with the loss of lives between the two parties. Then, for the first time, Turkey sent ground and air forces to Azerbaijan to participate in large-scale military maneuvers between the two countries that began on 29/7/2020 and lasted about two weeks. Turkey began to show that it is adopting the issue of Azerbaijan and its occupied lands by the Armenians. No such thing happened before although sporadic clashes have occurred between the two parties from time to time since the declaration of the ceasefire in 1994. The last clashes were considered severe from that date, from the beginning of April until April 26, 2016, but Turkey did not intervene alongside Azerbaijan; they only received President Erdogan‘s condolences for the loss of lives in the clashes and his readiness to support Azerbaijan without offering anything! The circumstances required Turkey’s understanding with Russia and not confrontation, as America had planned in order for the two countries to stand together to install the pro-American Syrian regime, to strike the people of Syria who revolted against this regime and to prevent the return of Islam to power, especially since the Armenian revolt against Azerbaijan began in February 1988 with the support of Russia, and they declared their control over the mountainous Karabakh region in 1991, and declared an independent republic for them in it and the war continued until 1994. Azerbaijan therefore lost more than 20% to 24% of the its lands, which include the Karabakh region, which consists of 5 governorates, along with 5 other provinces in the west of the country, in addition to large parts of the governorates of Aghdam and Fuzuli. About a million residents were displaced from these Muslim populated areas. The Russian army intervened directly, and Russia still stands behind Armenia, with the small country, population, powers and capabilities compared to Azerbaijan.

4- Turkey is playing with the Azerbaijan issue according to its movement in the American orbit and the implementation of its orders. Turkey signed a comprehensive peace agreement with Armenia in Zurich, Switzerland on 10/10/2009, which recognizes the current borders between the two countries, the opening of these borders, the establishment of diplomatic relations, the exchange of ambassadors, the opening of consulates and the development of relations in all areas, regional and international cooperation, resolving regional and international conflicts by peaceful means according to international rules and laws, combating terrorism, developing democracy in the region, creating and developing dialogue for scientific scrutiny of historical documents and sources, in reference to solving the problem of the Armenian genocide claim, noting that Erdogan had previously refused the “understanding” with Armenia before withdrawing its forces from the occupied Azerbaijani lands in and around Karabakh.

The conclusion of this agreement came at a direct request from former US President Obama, who called on his visit to Turkey on 6/4/2009 to resolve the dispute between Turkey and Armenia and to establish peace between them, after relations between the two parties were cut off and the borders closed in 1993. Erdogan complied and signed a comprehensive peace agreement with Armenia without addressing Azerbaijan and the Armenian occupation of the Azerbaijani lands, nor the issue of the one million displaced Muslim from the Azerbaijani people. The US State Department announced that the signing is a historic event and that it participated in it!

5- At that time, Azerbaijan criticized the signing of the agreement before the withdrawal of Armenians from the occupied Azerbaijani lands was achieved, and Azerbaijan demanded that Turkey should abide by its previous promises of not to open the borders and establish relations with Armenia before the latter’s withdrawal from its occupied lands. Elaph website published on 10/10/2009: [ZURICH: The Foreign Ministers of Turkey and Armenia signed on Saturday evening in Zurich (Switzerland) bilateral agreements aimed at normalizing relations between the two parties. The two ministers, Edward Nalbandyan and Ahmet Davutoglu, shook hands at length after the signing… Phil Gordon, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs said, “This evening (Saturday) we participated in a historic event.”… Gordon was accompanied by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who arrived Saturday evening to London as part of a five-day tour of six European cities. Before her arrival in London, Clinton participated in Zurich, Switzerland, in the signing ceremony of the Turkish-Armenian agreements. For his part, a senior American official said that Obama is “enthusiastic” about the agreement and he considers it a “major step forward”.

For its part, Azerbaijan condemned on Sunday the normalization agreement between Armenia and Turkey, and warned at the same time that the opening of the Armenian-Turkish borders might cause instability in the southern Caucasus. The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry said in a statement, “The normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia before the withdrawal of Armenian forces from the occupied Azerbaijani region directly contradicts the interests of Azerbaijan and cast a shadow over the brotherly relations between Azerbaijan and Turkey, which are based on historical roots.” (Elaph, Saturday, October 10, 2009) End.

6- But Turkey’s Erdogan tried to deceive Azerbaijan with kind words without actions. It did not put any conditions in the agreement for the withdrawal of Armenia from Karabakh, but rather agreed on it as it is! But nine years later, In March 2018, under Russian pressure, Armenia officially canceled the agreement due to its submission to Russian influence. Thus, America missed the opportunity to take Armenia from Russia through this agreement with Turkey. Instead, Russia strengthened its influence in Armenia and strengthened its missile arsenal at its base, the Armenian Gyumri base, and then signed a joint air defense agreement in December 2015 with Armenia and deployed a squadron of MiG-29 aircraft, and thousands of soldiers, armour, long-range S-300 air and missile defense systems, as well as SE-6 medium-range air defenses. Russia introduced it to its market, the Eurasian Economic Union, which came into effect on 01/01/2015, along with Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. These countries, including Armenia, have become a market for the disposal of Russian products under the name of free movement of goods and services in all fields. The gross domestic product of this market is more than 5 trillion US dollars, and most of it is in favour of Russia.

7- After all that, America sought other ways to strengthen its influence in Azerbaijan and to weaken Russian influence in it, and then enter Armenia. It instructed Turkey to strengthen its military relations along with economic and political relations with Azerbaijan to enhance the American influence and to pressure Armenia to open the doors to the American influence, until the last clashes took place last July as if they were a deliberate act so that Turkey can use it as a pretext to intervene militarily, and send forces for training and joint maneuvers, and then the recent violent clashes erupted and a state of war by both sides was declared.

Immediately after these clashes, Turkish President Erdogan wrote on 27/9/2020 on his Twitter account the international community’s failure to respond to Armenia’s attacks shows its double standard. “Holding onto its negligent attitude for almost 30 years, the (OSCE) Minsk group, unfortunately, is miles away from acting in a manner that is focused on finding a solution to the conflict,” Erdogan said.. He said, “The establishment of peace in the region will be through the departure of the Armenian forces from the occupied Azerbaijani lands in 1992. Turkey will continue to stand by the friendly and brotherly Azerbaijan…” (Turkish News Agency, 28/9/2020), but he thought that people have forgot! So, he forgot that he had neglected all that and turned a blind eye to it when he signed that agreement, the peace agreement with Armenia in 2009 to serve America without demanding the withdrawal of Armenian forces from Azerbaijani lands, and that was not mentioned, even in one word!

8- And when Armenia canceled this agreement, nine years after its signing, and America was unable to enter Armenia, Erdogan once again demanded the withdrawal of Armenian forces from these occupied lands. He criticized his dear friend, Putin, as he described him, and he also criticized Macron and said (“I spoke about this matter with Russian President Vladimir Putin and French President Emmanuel Macron, but without a result.” Turkish News Agency 1/10/2020), and he did not criticize his friend and ally, Trump, as he also describes him. How can he criticize him when he is the engine behind the curtain, but rather in front of it?! Even if America manipulated diplomatic methods, it is exposed to everyone who has eyesight and insight. And that includes US President Trump’s announcement in a press conference on the evening of 27/9/2020 that (“America will seek to stop the violence that broke out between Armenia and Azerbaijan.” But he said: “the US has a lot of good relationships in that area. We will see if we can stop it.” Al-Jazeera 27/9/2020), that is, he will stop it when he deems it necessary to stop it, and he did not say that he will exert pressure and put all the weight of America to put pressure on both parties to find a solution.

Rather, he alleviated that by saying “if we can stop it,” and it is the state that if it wants to implement something, it puts all its weight and pressure on it! The US State Department statement stated that it “The United States condemns in the strongest terms this escalation of violence. The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Stephen Pigeon, urged the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan and his Armenian counterpart to immediately cease hostilities from both sides, and to cooperate with the co-chairs of the Minsk Group with the aim of returning to substantive negotiations as soon as possible and it affirmed Washington’s commitment to assisting both sides on achieving a peaceful and sustainable settlement of the conflict…” (Qatari, Al-Jazeera and the Iranian Al-Alam, 27/9/2020). It equated between the Azerbaijani and Armenian parties in demanding a cessation of hostilities, because the US position targets the two countries to enhance influence in them and weaken or remove Russian influence from them. All of this indicates that America is implicitly satisfied with Turkey’s moves and that it has moved on the side of Azerbaijan with US instructions. Otherwise, why is the Turkish presidential spokesman, Ibrahim Kalin, contacted on 29/9/2020 the US National Security Adviser, Robert O’Brien, as reported by Anadolu Agency about the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia if America was not the one behind these moves?

9- Moreover, Erdogan and his officials’ confirmation that they negotiated the implementation of the unjust Security Council resolutions and the decisions of the Minsk Group that emerged from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 1992 and its leaders are America, Russia and France, even though these decisions are in the favour of Armenia and to secure a ceasefire in its favour. All this confirms that there is an intentional action to escalate the situation, to pave the way for political and diplomatic actions and to exert the pressure that America desires.

Wars are often used as a means to move political and diplomatic actions, which are linked to American instructions. Calls have begun from all parties to negotiate and find a political solution to the issue and implement the Security Council’s resolutions. Turkish officials have repeatedly made statements in support of Azerbaijan on the basis of resolving the issue based on Security Council resolutions. During his visit to the Azerbaijani embassy in Ankara, Foreign Minister, Cavusoglu, said (“The decisions of the United Nations, the European Council and the European Organization for Security and Cooperation regarding the integrity of the Azerbaijani soil are clear, and if Armenia does not withdraw, the issue will not be resolved.” Al-Jazeera, 29/9/2020). Knowing that these decisions did not touch the Karabakh Heights at all, but rather the other lands, which indicates complicity against the issue of Azerbaijan.

10- Russia stands behind Armenia, a country with a small area, population, powers and capabilities in relation to Azerbaijan. Russia is the one that funds and supports Armenia with weapons and equipment and everything necessary to survive. Armenia is a member of the collective security organization led by Russia and it has a large military presence there, so it is difficult to abandon it; otherwise, its back from this side will be exposed and gives access to the North Caucasus, which is part of Federal Russia. Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, during a telephone conversation with his Armenian counterpart, Zohrab Mnatsakyanyan, expressed his “concern about the hostilities in Karabakh, stressing the need for a ceasefire” (Sputnik, 27/9/2020), which indicates Russian support for Armenia against Azerbaijan. When Turkey condemns Armenia, it must condemn the main supporter, Russia, that imposes its influence there and protects Armenia. Armenia dares the aggression only with Russian support. He who supports the enemy is also an enemy. However, Turkey’s Erdogan established the best relations with the Russian enemy and it is its ally in Syria against its Muslim people revolting against the criminal regime headed by Bashar Assad.

At the same time, it is an American tool to manipulate Russia and use it to achieve the American interests. But it is not easy for Russia to make concessions in its vital region, as happened with Ukraine and Georgia. Therefore, the conflict will not be resolved in this battle, and political and diplomatic actions will take over, as they are more effective in deceiving Russia.

11- As for France’s presence there, it is different. It does not have any influence there, and it is trying to show itself as a major country. It wants to maintain its membership in the Minsk Group that was formed in 1992 according to a decision of the European Security and Cooperation Council to resolve the issue of the Azeri-Armenian conflict and secure the cease fire permanently. It stands in the way of Turkey, which hinders the European and French influence, because Turkey is in the orbit of America. Macron said at a press conference in Latvia on 30/9/2020: “I learned about the Turkish “pro-Azerbaijan” announcements, which I think are reckless and dangerous. France is still very concerned about the warlike messages sent by Turkey in the past hours, which remove any obstacles in front of Azerbaijan to invade Nagorno-Karabakh again, and we will not accept this.” (Reuters, 30/9/2020). Turkish Foreign Minister, Cavusoglu, responded on 30/9/2020, saying, “France’s solidarity with Armenia amounts to support for the Armenian occupation in Azerbaijan.” (Anadolu, 30/9/2020). France is trying to appear as an ‘honest’ mediator in a contradictory position, when it is the country that does not master political maneuvering, its position is always exposed, and if it tries to hide it, the contradiction appears. In a statement issued after the clashes, a spokeswoman for the French Foreign Ministry Von Der Muhll said:

“France is deeply concerned about the large-scale clashes in Karabakh and the reports of casualties, especially among civilians, and calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities and the resumption of dialogue.” And she said, “France, as a co-chair of Minsk, affirms with its Russian and American partners its commitment to reaching a negotiated solution to the conflict within the framework of international law”  (Sputnik, 27/9/2020). At the same time, it is driven by an apparent hatred against Islam and Muslims always, whether it is internal, as it claims that it practices freedoms, and restricts that freedoms of the Muslims in an exposed contradictory position, or it is external, as it adopts the issues of Armenians and other Christians to exploit them to establish its influence, and they are easy to be deceived, as it deceived them during the First World War and incited them against the Ottoman State, which looked after their affairs for centuries. France promised them a homeland in Anatolia, so they betrayed the Ottoman State and killed many Muslims by France’s incitement. And it would have been in their interest if they remained as the people of Dhimma (Ahl al-Dhimma), safe under the Islamic state, that does justice to them and does not exploit them as France and other colonial countries do.

12- As for the Security Council resolutions that demand that countries implement them, including Turkey itself, they did not address the Karabakh region, which was controlled by the Armenians who declared it a republic for them. The first resolution was issued on April 30, 1993 under number 822 demanding an immediate end to the clashes and hostilities, and demanded a permanent ceasefire. It demanded the Armenian occupation forces to withdraw from the Zhangilan region, the city of Horadiz Kurdlar and other Azerbaijani areas, but it did not address the occupied Karabakh region. There are other decisions issued in the same year confirming this decision, so Resolution No. 853 was issued on July 29, 1993. The previous decision confirmed and condemned the seizure of Aghdam Province and other regions of Azerbaijan, demanding the complete withdrawal from these areas by the Armenians and demanding that the Armenian government put pressure on the Karabakh region to comply with Resolution 822. This same year, on October 14, Resolution No. 874 was issued, reiterating its support for the peace process between the two sides and calling for acceptance of the revised timetable for urgent steps. Azerbaijan rejected it because it linked the withdrawal of Armenian forces in Karabakh from occupied Azerbaijani lands to lifting the embargo imposed on Armenia. So, the Azerbaijani government complained about its treatment of like the defeated side. The revised timetable included proposals related to the withdrawal of troops from the newly occupied territories and removing all obstacles to communication and transportation and that all other issues which were not dealt with according to the council must be settled through peaceful negotiations. And on November 12 of the same year, 1993 Resolution No. 884 was issued, affirming previous decisions and condemning the ceasefire violations between the two parties, particularly in Zangilan and Horadiz. It called on the Armenian occupation forces to withdraw from Zangilan and Horadiz, and the occupation forces to withdraw from the lands they occupied from Azerbaijan. Not all Security Council resolutions referred to the withdrawal from Karabakh. The decisions were formulated in a thoughtful way, focusing on Azerbaijani lands outside the Karabakh region, and considering this region implicitly not as Azerbaijani lands. This means that if negotiations and then an agreement became possible, this region, the Karabakh region specifically, would remain under the control of the Armenians in exchange for their withdrawal from the Azerbaijani lands. Turkey is demanding the implementation of these decisions, which do not demand the withdrawal of Armenians from the Karabakh region, and also demanded the implementation of Security Council resolutions in Syria that do not affect the regime but affirm its survival and the preservation of its secular identity. It also demanded the implementation of the two-state solution in Palestine, that allows the occupation of 80% of Palestinian lands by the Jews. Thus, the Karabakh issue was stalled, and the ceasefire was a victory for the Armenians. The Minsk Group has not announced what would be the solution and what is being negotiated except for those Security Council resolutions, but it is understood from the context and the circumstances and disputes that they want to extract recognition from Azerbaijan for the Armenian occupation of the five provinces of Karabakh region, where it was completely emptied of its Muslim people and replaced by the kuffar of Armenian Christians, until Armenia withdraws from the other five provinces and the occupied areas of Aghdam and Fuzuli provinces, and the case is thus settled. It is like what happened in Palestine where the Jews and those behind them, America, extracted recognition from the Palestine Liberation Organization and the existing regimes in the Arab and Islamic countries of the usurpation of about 80% of Palestine by Jews, and about 20% of the lands occupied by Jews since 1967 were being negotiated, but which were handed over to them by the trecherous rulers, when they accepted the ceasefire and accepted Resolutions 242 and 243 issued by the Security Council, which stipulate the withdrawal of the Jewish entity only from the lands it occupied, but was handed over to it on June 5 of that year.

13- This Turkish interest does not bode well, so whenever Turkey’s Erdogan interferes in an issue, it will be at the expense of its people and in the interest of America, just like what happened in Syria; Turkey exerted pressure on the armed factions to accept the reducing escalation and cease-fire agreement, which was not observed by the Syrian regime and those who supported it directly from the Iranian regime and its supporters and Russia, until these factions were driven out from their areas and were handed over to the regime. Similarly, what happened in Libya as Turkey provided support to the Sarraj government, and when the Sarraj forces advanced towards Sirte and Jufra, Turkey stopped its support and demanded that Sarraj implements a permanent ceasefire and negotiate with the other party, Haftar’s party, which Turkey considers illegal! It is not ruled out that Turkey‘s support is to exert pressure on Azerbaijan to soften its position, and this is what is indicated by the statements of Turkish officials, as the stalemate in the negotiations led by the Minsk Group, especially America, has not been broken. This is until Azerbaijan makes concessions on the issue of Karabakh, while it is reiterating its pledge to restore Karabakh by force from the occupiers. America, Russia and France consider Karabakh an Armenian region from the tone of their speech and their media that always support the Armenians and the Security Council resolutions issued by these three countries and approved by the other countries in the Council. A republic is formed in the region, as if it is independent from Armenia, complicating the negotiations, and this region would not give up its independent entity! And so that Armenia would not be directly responsible and evade the pressures if brought against it. Turkey’s Erdogan’s position is unreliable in this issue and elsewhere, as he has not provided support since the war broke out between the two parties thirty years ago, and Azerbaijan remained standing alone, and Turkey did not support it, and that is why it is feared that the last support is tantamount to imposing hegemony over the Azerbaijani decision and then make concessions!

14- Azerbaijan is an Islamic country and the majority of its people are Muslims, but its regime is secular, and it is an extension of the former communist regime in keeping religion separated from the state and from society. This country was conquered along with Armenia during the reign of the third Rashid (rightly guided) Caliph Othman bin Affan, may Allah be pleased with him. We cannot rely on Turkey or Iran to save and liberate the Islamic countries from the American or Russian grip, but rather they are cooperating with them. There is no salvation for Muslims except with the return of the Second Khilafah Rashida (Rightly Guided Caliphate) on the method of Prophethood that is the glad-tiding of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ: «إِنَّكُمْ فِي النُّبُوَّةِ مَا شَاءَ اللَّهُ أَنْ تَكُونَ، ثُمَّ يَرْفَعُهَا إِذَا شَاءَ أَنْ يَرْفَعَهَا، ثُمَّ تَكُونُ خِلَافَةٌ عَلَى مِنْهَاجِ النُّبُوَّةِ، فَتَكُونُ مَا شَاءَ اللَّهُ أَنْ تَكُونَ، ثُمَّ يَرْفَعُهَا إِذَا شَاءَ أَنْ يَرْفَعَهَا، ثُمَّ تَكُونُ مُلْكاً عَاضّاً، فَيَكُونُ مَا شَاءَ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَكُونَ، ثُمَّ يَرْفَعُهَا إِذَا شَاءَ أَنْ يَرْفَعَهَا، ثُمَّ تَكُونُ جَبْرِيَّةً، فَتَكُونُ مَا شَاءَ اللَّهُ أَنْ تَكُونَ، ثُمَّ يَرْفَعُهَا إِذَا شَاءَ أَنْ يَرْفَعَهَا، ثُمَّ تَكُونُ خِلَافَةٌ عَلَى مِنْهَاجِ النُّبُوَّةِ» “There will be Prophethood for as long as Allah wills it to be, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be Khilafah on the Prophetic method and it will be for as long as Allah wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be biting Kingship for as long as Allah Wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be oppressive kingship for as long as Allah wills, then he will remove it when He wills, and then there will be Khilafah upon the Prophetic method” and then he remained silent. Verily the Messenger of the Allah ﷺ is truthful.

18 Safar 1442 AH

5/10/2020 CE