Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has on Thursday accused Azerbaijani troops of crossing the Armenian Azerbaijani border in an attempt to stake claim to new territory, mainly at and around Lake Sev, which is mostly in Armenia but part of it is in Azerbaijan.
Furthermore Yerevan alleges that Baku has tried to move its armed forces into the directions of Sisian in Syunik province and Vardenis in the Gegharkunik province.
If Azerbaijani forces did go after and seize Lake Sev, it would make strategic sense if Russia didn’t get involved under its CSTO obligations to Armenia, as it faces the old Soviet highway that connected to Azerbaijan’s Nakhichivan exclave. President Ilham Aliyev did say that if Armenia didn’t follow through on the construction of the Nakhichivan corridor through Syunik province, that Azerbaijan would make it happen by force.
Goris’ Deputy Mayor Menua Hovespyan has said that currently Azerbaijan has complete control of Lake Sev and right now he said they are giving talks a chance.
With the alleged border infiltrations across a number of fronts in Armenia, Yerevan has applied to the CSTO under Article 2 which is to secure help against a threat to the member state’s borders. It is a double edged sword for Armenia as it sends a message of not being able to properly defend the borders of the nation but it could, if Russia gets involved be a massive deterrence to Azerbaijan.
Since the events began Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has spoken to Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov about the developments and both Foreign Ministries have stressed the importance of resolving tensions through political and diplomatic means. The Russians are by no means giving any indication of actual support for Armenia.
The CSTO has said int he case of aggravation on the border with Armenia and Azerbaijan, they will take the measures needed within the framework of the Collective Security Treaty.
Armenia has also presented the reported incursions to the OSCE and seems to be trying to use all international diplomatic means to try to get Azerbaijan out of what does appears to be in at least a limited faction, out of Armenian territory.
The situation is developing, it does appear there has been at least a limited incursion, its unclear the extent of the incursion, and what Russia, the CSTO, and embattled Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan will do about it.
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