Stepanakert applies double standards regarding arms supply to Azerbaijan

On January 13 the Armenian mass media made a reference to “diana_mihailova’s” blog in livejournal and reported that Azerbaijan has purchased 50 units of anti-tank missiles from Ukraine.

According to the published news the State Border Service of Azerbaijan purchased 25 units of РК-2С and 25 units of РК-2ОФ anti-tank missiles from State Kyiv design bureau “Luch” through Ukrainian “Ukrspecexport” state enterprise in April last year. Kiev was criticized by the official Stepanakert for selling weapons to Baku.

Moscow permitted, Kyiv not

Commenting on the sale of Ukrainian weapons to Azerbaijan the spokesman of the President of Artsakh David Babayan accused Ukraine of supporting terrorism

“But one thing is clear for him [ed. David Babayan]: Arms sale by Ukraine to Azerbaijan means supporting terrorism,” Aravot writes, indirectly quoting the Artsakh official.

However, when another batch was received by Baku from Russia in July 2017 2017-ի Babayan did not qualify Moscow’s actions as supporting terrorism. Moreover, the press secretary of the president attempted to justify this kind of action by Russia in his comment to RFE/RL’s Armenian service. The official stated that if Russia does not supply weapons “it will be done by another state.”

“We don’t view this transaction as an action against Armenians. It is rather business between Russia and Azerbaijan, which, I reiterate, is not adequate and Azerbaijan is not the proper state to be provided with arms. However it is a matter of Russia’s internal affairs,” Babayan said.

Thus, Stepanakert applies double standards regarding the same issue, justifying Russia’s supply of arms to Azerbaijan, and calling the same policy of another country “support to terrorism.” But if we follow the same logic, Kyiv’s decision should also have been considered a matter of “internal affairs” of a country… especially if we take into account the circumstance that in contrast to Russia, Ukraine is not in the same strategic bloc with Armenia, and does not have any common security commitments towards Armenia.

“Inexplicable Logic?”

Babayan has also announced that “there is an inexplicable philosophy and logic” in the actions of Kyiv, and Ukraine is taking steps that are in favor of Azerbaijan.

It is worth reminding that since 2014, when Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula (which was Ukraine’s territory), Armenia has always voted against bills condemning Russia’s illegal actions, thus supporting the annexation of Crimea. There are two dozen such countries supporting Russia in the international arena. During such votes, Armenia appears next to countries such as Belarus, Nicaragua, Sudan, Syria, and North Korea.

Basis of the Accusation and Main Addressee 

It is also noteworthy that Babayan accused Kyiv in supporting terrorism, taking a post by “livejournal” as a basis. Though in 2011 “Ukrspecexport” published the statement of Azerbaijani Minister of Defense Industry about negotiations with “Luch” regarding joint anti-missile industry in its webpage, currently there is no another credible source that has published the information on supply of weapons to Azerbaijan by Ukraine.

Nevertheless, if we follow the logic of the Spokesperson of Artsakh’s president, we can state that by supplying weapons to Azerbaijan, Russia becomes a “supporter of terrorism” by 85%.  According to the data of Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Russia’s share in offensive weapons purchased by Azerbaijan in 2010-2014 was 85%.

Aren Melikyan
“Union of Informed Citizens”

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