March 18, 2017 - 14:12 AMT
Baku will lose more land in new Karabakh war: Russia ex-spy chief

The desire to settle the Nagorno Karabakh (Artsakh) conflict by force or a new war will not yield any result, except the complication of the issue and possible loss of more territories for Azerbaijan, Russia’s former intelligence chief said, according to

Vyacheslav Trubnikov, a journalist, political scientist, spy and a diplomat, has worked as the director of Foreign Intelligence Service and a first deputy of foreign minister of Russia. Also, in the 1990s he was the Russian co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, tasked with the peaceful settlement of the conflict.

Russia will go to great lengths to ensure that hostilities don’t resume under any circumstances, he said.

“This, after all, is a matter of national security, and we won’t allow a new round of conflict. As an OSCE Minsk Group co-chairing country, we will seek options for its settlement,” Trubnikov said.

According to the diplomat, no pressure on either side will give any results.

The Armenian side now has more advantages than Azerbaijan, Trubnikov said, citing control over Karabakh and the safe zone surrounding it.

“Armenia will play its trump cards to the maximum in the negotiation process, while pressure could yield the opposite effect. Therefore, it is necessary to patiently convince the parties to work towards a peaceful solution to the problem,” he said.

Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan and Azeri leader Ilham Aliyev met on June 20 in Saint Petersburg to address the conflict, with Russian President Vladimir Putin mediating the talks. The Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents confirmed their commitment to the implementation of agreements reached at a Vienna-hosted meeting on May 16. To that end, they agreed to increase the number of international observers in the Karabakh conflict zone. Also, they expressed satisfaction that the ceasefire was now holding. Prior to that, a meeting between both leaders was organized on May 16 in Vienna, with top diplomats from the Minsk Group co-chairing countries hosting the summit.