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August was difficult for Armenia and Azerbaijan as well

Tuesday, September 23
The five-day war between Russia and Georgia has influenced the entire South Caucasus, politically as well as economically.

The Co-Chairman of the OSCE Minsk group for regulating the Karabakh conflict, Bernard Facier, has stated that Armenia and Azerbaijan also suffered from the five day war. As the French diplomat (and first French Ambassador to Georgia in a previous role) stated, the war was a good lesson for the confronting sides in Karabakh, showing them that there is no other way than peaceful negotiations.

The Russian aggression became a battle for confirming the viability of the transportation corridor through Georgia. It forced the Georgian transit route to be blocked temporarily, however the pipelines are now once again operating at full capacity. Russia is still trying to discredit and undermine the Georgian transit corridor, by putting pressure on Azerbaijan to use Russian routes to transport its oil and gas. The Kremlin is manipulating Gazprom, which was suggesting even before the August events that it is ready to purchase all Azeri natural gas.

The Azeri newspaper Zerkalo highlights that Azerbaijan is in a rather awkward situation when it comes to transporting its resources for export. The chairman of the Azeri Political and Economic Research Centre, Sabit Bagirov, states that Azerbaijan will continue with the economic policies it had been following before the war, and Russia’s attempt to purchase Azeri natural gas is a political move. Azerbaijan will continue pumping its resources towards Turkey, thus fulfilling its commitments. Bagirov mentioned that apart from political realities, there are economic interests and international liabilities which Azerbaijan is committed to fulfilling.