Duma Leader Worried About Turkish Bases in Azerbaijan

MOSCOW (Interfax)–Russia is concerned about the possibility of Turkish military bases being stationed in Azerbaijan–Deputy Duma Speaker Vladimir Lukin said on Monday [11 February].

Lukin commented on recent statemen’s made by Azeri Parliament Speaker Murtuz Alasgarov–who said that Azerbaijan was ready to station Turkish bases on its territory and in the future enable Ankara to use information from the Gabala radar station.

Lukin said he completely understands Azerbaijan’s desire "to be friends with both Russia and Turkey".

"However–the forms of these friendly relations should be strictly regulated in order not to cast doubts on friendly relations with one country–while improving friendship relations with the other country," he said.

Therefore–"it would be good if the Azeri side chose other forms of strengthening its contacts with Ankara"–he said.

Speaking about Alasgarov’s statement that information obtained from the radar station could be provided to Turkey–Lukin called it "fairly uninformative".

First–the leading role in Azeri politics is played by the president.

Second–the Gabala radar station–which is leased to Russia for a period of 10 years–tracks intercontinental missile launches over a very large territory–Lukin said.

However–although Turkey is a NATO member–it does not have intercontinental missiles–and therefore the fact that it will receive information obtained by the radar station "does not concern issues relating to Russia’s national security"–Lukin said.

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