Azerbaijan hampers Abkhazia railway plan to keep Armenia in isolation – Russian expert

10:51 • 15.07.17



The Azerbaijani authorities are intentionally hampering the Abkhazian railway construction plan in an attempt to keep Armenia in isolation, says Stanislav Tarasov, a Russian expert specializing in Middle East and Caucasus Affairs.


According to him, Russia and Georgia are currently in serious talks over accelerating the process, with the Russian foreign minister who recently visited Abkhazia having already given his approval to the project.


“I think the opening of the Azbkhazian railway will re-establish the communication between Russia and Georgia in the nearest future. Baku is hampering the process through Georgia, and so is Turkey in a way, with the official Ankara’s attention being currently focused on the Middle East,” he told Tert.am.


The expert said he thinks the Azerbaijani authorities have serious fears that the plan, if realized, will open up new opportunities to Armenia, expanding its communication network. “It offers us a new opportunity to deepen the ties with Russia. As a member of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Collective Security Treaty Organization, Armenia has numerous trade, military and other agreements implying an active cooperation with Russia,” he noted.


As for the official Ankara’s stance, Tarasov said he feels that the Turkish authorities are now preoccupied with absolutely different problems.


“Turkey is playing football on its own court, and playing football on one’s own court implies defeat at times or evening the scores at others and victory in very rare cases. Ankara can exercise influence on Baku to make it adopt a more consistent position on the issue. But Turkey currently doesn’t have the time,” Tarasov added.


In his words, the railway will have real chances to open only after establishing relative peace in the region.

Tigranuhi Martirosyan





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