Azerbaijan has picked a fight with the U.S. government. The simplest explanation for this may be that President Aliyev is as paranoid and isolated as their actions suggest. If United States want to maintain influence in Azerbaijan it should find messengers who can get through some thick palace walls.
On June 1 Abkhaz President Alexander Ankvab was forced to resign. The next Abkhaz leader will rule a state that most of the world does not regard as legitimate. He will also struggle to win the same legitimacy at home as his predecessors enjoyed.
The ceasefire, which halted the war over Nagorny Karabakh 20 years ago, has been broken with grim regularity. Ordinary soldiers and civilians are the ones who pay the price for a lack of agreement on the front line, which is called Karabakh’s Line of Contact.
For the first time in many years, the U.S. government made its own policy statement on the Nagorny Karabakh conflict on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the 1994 ceasefire. In his speech, the American co-chair of the Minsk Group of the OSCE issued an invitation to the governments in Baku and Yerevan to step up their commitment to the peace process.
Erdogan’s statement of condolences to the descendants of Armenians murdered by the Ottomans can let Turks feel freer and more comfortable to take a more critical look at their history, as well as reduce the tension between Turkey and Armenia.
The new Russian legislation allowing regions of another country to seek to join the Russian Federation gives Moscow leverage over a number of regions. Georgians are worrying that South Ossetia could be one of these regions.
In his statement on the “Armenian Question,” Erdogan goes further than any other Turkish leader before him and offers condolences to the descendants of Ottoman Armenians. However, instead of rhetoric, it would be better for each of the nations to concentrate on normalizing Armenian-Turkish relations and opening the closed border.