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Friday, March 23, 2018

Belarus is clearly trying to undermine relations between Moscow and Baku

Moscow long remember another Russian-Belarusian dispute, caused by a completely inappropriate intervention of Minsk in a very far away conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh. The rhetoric of Russia in connection with “the case of blogger Lapshin” is extremely revealing – and immediately see who it blames the scandal of Moscow.

Russian diplomats met with the blogger Alexander Lapshin, which was issued by the Minsk Baku.

“Moscow blames the incident solely Minsk”

As you know, February 7 the decision of the Belarusian court the Russian-Israeli blogger on a special flight was extradited from Belarus to Azerbaijan. Lapshin accused of illegally visiting Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. In addition, he is known for his sharply critical comments against the leadership of Azerbaijan.

The next day, President Ilham Aliyev made a telephone call to the leader of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko thanked “for demonstrating fair position,” and the results, the Azerbaijani leader was seen as “the rule of law and international conventions”.

Extradition has caused quite a wide resonance in the first place in Russia, but not only. Anyway, this story called attention to a substantial part of the former Soviet Union, as well as in Israel. It even provoked a statement by the Azerbaijani Minister of foreign Affairs, expressing indignation at the “excessive politicization of this issue”.

In addition, the experts had the results you see – and rightly so – serious political implications associated with the current stage of Russia’s relations with the involved countries, primarily Belarus.

As you know, in the moment of Belarusian-Russian relations are going through a serious crisis, manifested in harsh rhetoric of the Belarusian leader and exacerbations from a plurality of directions. One of the last steps was the abolition of the Rosselkhoznadzor’s inspection of Belarusian enterprises because of fears of possible provocations.

In the context of these circumstances the history of his begins to play with new faces. It is very significant is Moscow’s official position on the matter.

The Russian Embassy in Minsk said that the learned extradition Lapshin from Israeli diplomats after this information appeared in the media. The Russian foreign Ministry official expressed “deep disappointment by the decision, inconsistent with the spirit of allied relations between Russia and Belarus”.

With regard to the statements of the Azerbaijani side, it is impossible not to note that the Russian rhetoric in this case is much more restrained and amorfnye. Press Secretary of the Russian President said that taking all possible measures to protect the blogger. And the Russian Ambassador to Belarus said that Russia will take steps for his release.

Such positioning leaves no doubt that Moscow is blaming the incident solely Minsk. And I must admit that this approach is not without grounds.

In almost any state there are topics of particular importance to him are his pain points. For Azerbaijan, for obvious reasons, this topic is Nagorno-Karabakh. The policy on similar topics (the disputed territories) is often formal-symbolic, but extremely stubborn character (suffice it to recall the Japanese position on the Kuril Islands), and uninvolved countries are usually politely ignored, and costs.

Belarus, Azerbaijan passing Lapshin, intervened in the situation to which she, essentially, has not the slightest relationship. Minsk could easily find a way to evade any engagement, especially as we are talking about such a delicate tangle of issues and questions. Instead, Lukashenka, in fact, threw a grenade may not, but it’s pretty loud firecracker in a situation very delicate balance in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. And threw in the direction of the guarantor of the current balance, which is Russia.

This explains the very careful rhetoric about Moscow’s located in Azerbaijan Lapshin.

The Kremlin is categorically not interested in worsening relations with Baku. Moreover, it’s mutual. With all the external success Baku is in a very difficult situation, and no interest to quarrel with Moscow and tel Aviv due to some blogger had not. At the same time, since it is sacred to modern Azerbaijan Nagorno Karabakh, Baku retreat. It is linked to this expressed in the media version of that in the end it will end the fact that lapshyn will be sentenced, almost immediately pardoned and transferred to Israel.

As a result of “last in line” remains Minsk, whose actions in this whole situation look like a deliberate attempt to undermine Russian-Azerbaijani relations. And, it seems, that is how they were regarded in Moscow.


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