R. Mehdiyev

Today 63626.html
March 10 2010

Interview with member of the Russian Duma (Parliament), Director of
the Russia-based Institute of Political Studies and political analyst
Sergey Markov.

Do you share Turkey's viewpoint that a move by the U.S. Congress House
of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs to adopt the "Armenian
genocide" resolution poses a threat to security in the South Caucasus?

Of course, the U.S. Congress committee's decision poses no direct
threat to security in the South Caucasus. But it may spark other
things. It can boost conflicts in the region giving rise to new legal
demands of the sides regarding many unresolved ethnic and territorial
problems in the Caucasus. Such a probability does persist.

However, there is direct threat neither for the South Caucasus and
the Republic Turkey. No doubt, the decision by the U.S. congressmen
is a strong blow to Turkey's interests.

In your opinion, what is the reason behind the U.S. Congress move?

It should be noted, that this issue has been raised on numerous
occasions. Of course, actions against Armenians in that historical
period were very cruel. But one needs to understand that it took place
a long time ago. I believe the recent decision by the Committee on
Foreign Affairs was result of long-term efforts of pro-Armenian and
Greek lobby in the U.S. Of course, this document would not have been
adopted if Washington had not deviated from policy of accepting Turkey
as its political ally in the Middle East and South Caucasus.

Can this decision spark a new tension in the South Caucasus and change
relation between the two countries?

Of course, change in relations will take place in the
Turkey-Armenia-Azerbaijan triangle first and foremost since the recent
move aims to encourage all forces critical of Turkey. In other words,
all forces opposed against Turkey will enhance potential. From this
standpoint, this will lead to shift in balance of forces and situation
in the South Caucasus in an indirect way.

>>From your point of view, can this impact Russia's interests and
its mediation efforts to resolve the conflict between Armenia and

I believe these developments will have no direct influence on
interests of sides involved in organizing the Nagorno-Karabakh
negotiations. However, due to changes in overall political situation
because of the recent developments, it will have an indirect impact
on certain aspects of talks.

How did Moscow take the decision made in the U.S.? May it cause an
anxiety in the Russian leadership?

I can not exactly say how the Russian leadership took this decision.

But I can say that it keeps a close on such things. Russian politicians
attentively estimate what impact such actions may have on situation
around our country and its interests. I believe it is wrong to present
historical facts as part of the modern policy. In general, presence
of historical facts in modern politics is very dangerous.

In your opinion, can the Nagorno-Karabakh negotiations now acquire
a new direction?

I do not think so. I think the U.S. Congress Committee's decision
will not directly influence the Nagorno-Karabakh negotiations. It will
have no direct and deep influence. But something will change anyway.