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Armenia, Azerbaijan, Caucasus, International Relations, Karabakh

My tweet Record from ESISC report titled “The Armenian Job: The role of armenian lobby in the pattern of enmity in south caucasus”


coverHere is my tweet record summarized from ESISC report titled “The Armenian Job: The role of Armenian lobby in the pattern of enmity in South Caucasus”. You can reach original report at this LINK or can download PDF version of ESISC Report

During 1828-1908, 1 million Armenians were resettled from Tzar Russia and Ottoman Empire to South Caucasus, also in Nagorno Karabakh… By Gulistan (1813) and Turkmenchay (1828) Treaties, territory and nation of Azerbaijan was divided in two parts – the South was integrated in Persian and the North integrated in the Russian empire… Stalin choosing to let the Nagorno Karabakh AO and the Nakhchivan ASSR within Azerbaijan border despite Armenian claims…

Azerbaijan was plunge into the war for Nagorno Karabakh in 1988…Given the support by USSR and later Russia to Armenia in the first months of war, Azerbaijan turned to West to defend its interests… The Nagorno Karabakh is an internationally recognized territory of Azerbaijan… Since then (1994 ceasefire), Armenian troops have been occupying the Nagorno Karabakh, as well as seven surrounding provinces… Armenia connected Nagorno Karabakh to its territory through the Lachin corridor… The size of these occupied territories is estimated 20% of Azerbaijan’s territory… The conflict caused more than 30.000 deaths and over 1 million between refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)… According to the World Bank, Azerbaijan is one of the highest concentration of IDPs in the world…

In this sensitive “game”, Armenia is seeking to balance Baku’s growing power by strongly lobbying its cause worldwide… One should remember that Armenia can also count upon its widespread diaspora… Armenian lobby plays an important role in keeping Armenian issues on the political agenda of several western countries… Armenian Lobby has been very effective in isolating Baku from international assistance in the first 10 years following independence…

Due to the power of the Armenian lobby in the USA, Azerbaijan has been black-listed and barred from American support… Z.Brzezinski, ranked the Armenian lobby as the third most effective one in shaping US foreign policy… Dating back to 1915, Armenian diaspora is present in more than 50 countries (including USA, France, Russia, Greece, Lebanon, Syria and Iran)… More than 10 million Armenians live worldwide, out of which 7 million in diaspora, which means two times larger of people living in Armenia (3.3mln). Armenian Diaspora has played a twofold role in Armenian politics and society.

First of all, it helps national economy through remittances… Following collapse of the USSR, Armenian economy has been supported by funds provided mainly by Russians-Armenians and US-Armenians. The total amount of this funding for the period 2003-2005 has been counted at around 37 % of Armenia’s GDP… Second main role of Armenian Lobby has been the recognition of Nagorno Karabakh as an autonomous State or as an integral part of Armenia… Armenian Lobby succeed in Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act (a US law that bans Azerbaijan from US aids and support)…

Armenian Diaspora in the US is organized around two main lobbying organizations: Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) & Armenian Assembly of America (AAA)… Armenian Lobby in the US is strong due to its organization/determination and it is also very influential in local elections… Similar activities are carried out by the Armenian Lobby in Europe through Brussels-based organizations “European Armenian Federation for Justice and Democracy” (EAFJD), “European Friends of Armenia (EuFoA)”, in France through the “Coordinating Council of Armenian Organisations of France” (CCAF) and the “Armenian National Committee of France” (ANCF)…

The core of the Armenian lobbying activities is directed against its two main regional competitors: Turkey and Azerbaijan… Senators Robert Menendez and Mark Kirk are two of the ANCA-backed Congressmen that are pressuring US Government to adopt the resolution (on fictitious “Armenian Genocide”)… The newspaper (Guardian 2010) reported that in 2009 the ANCA spent about $ 50,000 for lobbying the Congress on the resolution… French Parliament adopted (2012) law on denial of the “Armenian Genocide” as a criminal offence (one year prison and € 45.000 fine) (ESISC). Is this respect to freedom of speech? (c)… Lobbying on Genocide Resolution is first of the attempts of Armenian Lobby to influence US and EU foreign and domestic policies toward Yerevan’s interests…

Armenian Lobby focused on alienating Azerbaijan from US and EU sphere of intervention for promotion of both democracy and energy security… Second strategic goal of Armenian Lobbies is to consolidate the control over the Nagorno Karabakh. This is pursued by creating international political consensus for the status quo which might lead in the future to definitive acquisition of the region through self-determination… Armenian Lobby works two provide funding for Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh from international donors and preventing Azerbaijan from receiving a similar aid… In France, CCAF is pressuring the French Government and international community to recognize the independence of the Nagorno Karabakh… Armenia is interested in freezing conflict, not in its resolution, which sees now International Community not recognizing the Nagorno Karabakh as an Independent Republic… In order to balance Azerbaijan’s oil revenues, Armenia has always sought after external sponsors which would grant funding for Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh, at the same time, would block similar aids to Azerbaijan… US have provided funds for the Nagorno Karabakh for more than $ 36 million in the period 1998-2011…

Since the beginning of the independence, the Armenian Lobby has worked hard to prevent Azerbaijan from receiving international assistance. The Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act in one of the most known example… The Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act was strongly lobbied by the Armenian-American community to prevent Azerbaijan to have access to US aids. Therefore, Section has left Baku without US financial support for the first ten years following the independence… US stance started changing in 2001, when the Senate approved a bill allowing the President to waive the Section’s restriction if the US national interest would require doing so… Lobbying has been able to keep US funds to Azerbaijan far below those allocated to Armenia. Baku still receives twice less than Yerevan… In 2012, Armenia received $ 40 million, in addition to $ 2 million for Nagorno Karabakh, against the $ 20.9 mln of Azerbaijan… Indeed, Neither the PACE nor the EP has decreed sanctions against Armenia for occupying Azerbaijani territories…

Moreover, Matthew Bryza served as an US Ambassador to Azerbaijan from February 2011 till January 2012. His short staying in office was due to the pressing activity of the Armenian-American lobby against his designation… Since President Obama appointed Ambassador Bryza to lead Embassy in Baku in May 2010, the Armenian lobby started his opposition campaign through pro-Armenian Congressmen in Capitol Hill. In particular, Senators Robert Menedez and Barbara Boxer strongly opposed against his nomination. The argumentations regarded: Bryza’s opposition to the U.S. “recognition of the Armenian genocide by Turkey”, the lack of critics against Azerbaijani aggression against Armenia and close ties with Turkey, considering that Byrza’s wife is Turkish born…

Furthermore, BTC project also was strongly opposed by Armenian Lobby in early 2000s, considering that pipeline projected to bypass Armenia, as it finally did… At that time, the ANCA set up a lobbying campaign against the realization of the (BTC) pipeline… Propagandas of Armenian Lobby against Azerbaijan also continued during Eurovision Song Contest 2012…

Thanks for your interest in my blog

Ilgar Gurbanov

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