Leyla Tagiyeva News.Az
May 21 2010

Alexey Vlasov News.Az interviews Alexey Vlasov, director of Moscow
State University's analytical centre on post-Soviet states.

How can you feature the established situation in the negotiation
process over the Karabakh conflict?

I would call this state a strategic pause. There are many
expectations but there are still no special conditions for their
soonest justification. There are too many subjective factors that
still influence the resolution process.

What do you expect from the upcoming meeting of the foreign ministers
of Azerbaijan and Armenia that must be held under mediation of the
Russian Foreign Ministry?

There are no special expectations but any meeting on this level is a
plus. The dialogue areas on which the negotiation process is supported
on the permanent basis are preserved. Such a format of a dialogue is
especially needed even if it does not bring quick effect.

How would you comment on Russia's mediation potential for reaching
peace between Azerbaijan and Armenia considering the numerous efforts
that yielded no effect?

The mediation potential is still high but the keys to the final
resolution of the conflict are in Baku and Yerevan. I think Russia
is doing maximal efforts in the situation when it cannot support one
of the conflict parties directly. It means that the balancing will
further be preserved.

Turkey and Iran also tend to contribute as mediators in the Karabakh
settlement. Do they have chances for success in this direction,
considering the fact that the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs have not
yet reached any success throughout 18 years of their activity?

Any mediation efforts should be welcomed. On the other hand, we
should not expect any serious breakthrough in connection with the
involvement of Ankara or Tehran. Excessive expectations in this case
just hamper the process. But as the addition to Minsk's Group efforts
Iran's participation is quite timely as Iran has normal relations
with Armenia.