Russia Assures Azerbaijan on Exclusion of Artsakh in Customs Union

Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov (left) and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at a press conference in Baku

BAKU—Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is on an official visit to Baku to discuss bilateral relations.

Lavrov met his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov on Wednesday. Addressing a briefing held after the meeting, Lavrov said cooperation between Azerbaijan and Russia is developing intensively not only on a bilateral but also on a regional level.

“The talks were useful,” the Russian foreign minister said. “We develop relationships based on friendship and mutual understanding. During the past year, our most intense exchange of delegations has taken place with Azerbaijan.”

Lavrov said the Russian-Azerbaijani forum will be held in the near future with the participation of over 200 representatives of Russian businessmen. He noted that the humanitarian forum will also be held under the patronage of the two countries’ presidents in October, 2014.

Mammadyarov, in turn, said relations between Azerbaijan and Russia are strategic. He also added that the trade turnover between the two countries is increasing.

Touching upon the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Lavrov said the OSCE Minsk Group is trying to promote the initiatives that have been previously reached by the presidents of the two countries.

Lavrov also emphasized that Armenia will join the Eurasian Economic Union according to borders recognized by the UN. Earlier, Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian told local media that the country will join the organization within the borders recognized by Armenia. He made the remarks in response to recent statements by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev.

“Integration processes are carried out on the territory of the member countries of the Customs Union. Nagorno-Karabakh is not one of them, but is the subject of negotiations, which are being held on the basis of agreed principles,” the Russian minister added.

Lavrov added that Armenia has previously stated that it is involved in the integration processes within the UN-recognized borders.

“The same thing will happen within the Eurasian process,” he said, adding that Russia as the co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group will continue to facilitate the resolution of the conflict in a peaceful way.

Touching upon the prospects of Azerbaijan’s accession to the Eurasian Union, Lavrov said Azerbaijan had not received an official invitation to join the organization. He added however that Moscow has always been glad to see its partners showing interest in the Eurasian space.

Mammadyarov, in turn, commented on a meeting of the presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia in the near future.

“There is a proposal from French President François Hollande for holding a meeting between presidents of Azerbaijan and Armenia. We are now waiting for a response from France on the organization of this meeting,” Azerbaijan’s foreign minister said.

Mammadyarov further said Russian State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin will visit Azerbaijan by the end of the year, adding that relations between Russia and Azerbaijan are developing in a positive way.

“We consider Azerbaijan as a serious partner in the South Caucasus. The country is interested in deepening bilateral relations. After last year’s visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Azerbaijan, the relations have expanded,” Lavrov underscored.


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  1. Armenian said:

    Oh, you mean Russia used Armenia as a prop to throw under the bus to woo Azerbaijan?

    Where’s that “Orthodox Brotherhood” when you need it?

    Yet I was called a “traitor” and had my Armenian-ness questioned when I said that this exact thing would be happening to Armenia, months before it happened… Anybody else noticed that our beloved Russophiles have been strangely quiet these past few weeks?

  2. Armenian said:

    Can’t say we didn’t have this coming. This is the result of stupid decision making, and blind love, trust and adoration for Russia. This is what happens when you cede your well-being to someone else: they will only use your love and adoration against you as a bargaining chip to win favor with someone else. Just as we lost Karabagh the last time around (because we were powerless and completely at the mercy of someone else), we will lose it again this time, too. Bravo “Serjik” and your “brilliant statesmanship”.

  3. Armenian said:

    This is exactly why Turkey completely and enthusiastically supports Azerbaijan’s entry into this block– they’ve probably received assurances from Russia that they will help quell their “Armenian problem” by giving Karabagh to the Azeris, and protecting the goons who have turned Armenia into a complete and total joke as that Armenia is never a serious threat to any country in the region, and will always be contained by Moscow’s leash.

  4. Vindicated Man said:

    I don’t like this statement, SL didn’t have to make it.

  5. GB said:

    Russia assured Azerbaijan, that Artsakh “CAN” be part of Azerbaijan again, as long as pipe lines control by Gazprom and Axerbaijani Sultan buy Russian made armaments!

  6. vartan said:

    no surprise azeris call lavrof ” SIKDIR “he considers them friend. in putins upsidedown russia nothing make sense . he is ortodox. ukrain is ortodox. they kill each other. putins twisted logic is to kiss turks.and chechen , dogestanis and other minority turkish oreinted asses. good luck few years later they will become your ISIS IN RUSSAN FEDERATION. IT WILL BE TO LATE FOR YOU THEY ARE GROWING VERY FAST. GOOD LUCK PUTINS TURKSSIA.

    • Armenian said:

      When will you and most Armenians get it through their thick skulls that “being nice” does not win you any friends or favor, and that one’s religion has nothing to do with foreign policy decisions. No wonder we’re in the sinkhole that we’re in now– “being nice” and depending on a common religion when ceding our existence to someone else has been a pinnacle of Armenian foreign policy for the past few years.

  7. A.N. said:

    The prospect doesn’t seem very promising for Armenia and Artzakh unless Russia assures Armenia of being loyal to Russian suppot of Armaenia in geo-politically and economically.

    • Armenian said:

      Being loyal? You mean everything we’ve done thus far has been interpreted as disloyal?

  8. ara said:

    Unfortunate the banana Republic Of Armenia is governed by thiefs an oligarghs and it is a protectorate of Russia!

  9. Sokimag said:

    So basically what Russia is saying: there should be custom check points between Armenia and Artsakh to collect import tax on products from Artsakh. That is unacceptable for us. That would hurt Artsakh economy even more and further isolate Artsakh.

    We can’t do that to Artsakh. It is kinda a betrayal. Artsakh products must be exported to Armenia without any tax.

    I see no interest for Armenia to join the Eurasian union/Custom union. In the long term, our economy will be harmed for sure if we join Custom union/Eurasian union. Why? Because European market is less likely to buy Armenian products, because of the tax that Eurasian Union would impose to countries outside the union. Europe is our largest market.

    Armenian government should do what is right for Armenia. Armenia’s interest must come first.

    • Armenian said:

      Anyone who believes that the CU and Armenia’s entry into it has anything– even remotely– to do with its well-being is naive, delusional and an all-around idiot.

  10. Ron said:

    It is time for Armenia to recognize the independence of Artsakh. We can’t expect other countries to do it if Armenia doesn’t do it first. Russia is playing a dirty game, and it unfortunately shows that it is not a reliable partner. Russia’s sale of arms to Azerbaijan is completely unacceptable. Turkey would never sell arms to Armenia, and nor should Russia to Azerbaijan.

  11. shahe said:

    Wow what an ass kissing mechanism by Mr Lavrov as we can see that Russia desperately needs money because of almost total failure of their economy….so why not sacrifice armenia? and kiss the asses of the muslims….. Well dear armenian russophiles why am I not hearing you. You bunch of idiots, you sold the country to russia and hope Mr Serjik reads this…..Mr Serjik stop playing chess and learn from the turks be more opportunistic and stop kissing russian asses. Sorry boys but russia has totally sold you out! The treaty of Moscow repeats itself again. amazing how our idiots in armenia do not learn anything!

    • Armenian said:

      They’re still here, too, waiting for remotely pro-Russian article to come up so they can “prove” that pro-Western Armenians are “wrong about Russia”, and there is a beloved and holy union between the two people that won’t dissolve the second Moscow sees the opportunity to stop another oil pipeline from entering Europe.

  12. Mihran said:

    Armenia should strengthen its own position and cooperate more with Georgia and via Georgia with the rest of the world. The realtion with our friend Russia is turning more to an abusive one. What Russia is doing lately is just not accaptable! Why shall then Armenia be so loyal to Russia?
    Armenias situation is much better than just some years ago! with more than one million tourist per year and an increasing belief among the diaspora Armenians in the motherland we have a very good chanse to break away of the Russian and Western powers influence!

    • Armenian said:

      Cooperation with Georgia is now much, much more difficult. They made a logical and reasonable decision to cooperate with the EU, and we made the decision to play a game of Follow the Leader with Putin because we were told that our existence would be in danger if we didn’t, but now our existence is still in danger regardless.

  13. dvo said:

    and yes Russia is slowly betraying Armenians.

    Armenia needs to face reality that it should be prepared and face what ever treath is coming from the enemy, there is no other choice, they should be prepared. i heard everyone saying lavrov is Armenian best friend, he has Armenian relatives. Armenia should wake up from the fantasy dreams. and take a look at its brave history and power Armenia had.

    The best thing for Armenia is to take serious steps towards Azerbaijan, like treating to recognize Artsakh, and urge countries to recognize Artsakh, and ofcourse Armenia should be proud of its position and strenght and it should never doubt that. nobody controls or can control Armenia except the Armenians them self

    • Armenian said:

      As long as there are despicable people with mafioso nicknames like Mook, Nemets Rubo, Dodi Gago, Tashiri Samo, and their yoke in every single government post in Armenia, you can bet that everyone– even soon the Azeris– will be able to control Armenia, and the country’s collective well being as everything will be sold and given to the highest bidder.

  14. Armenian said:

    Another irony: half-Armenian Lavrov is doing Russia’s bidding against his own people in Azerbaijan…