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November 9, 2010

ACNIS Holds Special Briefing on the Azerbaijani Parliamentary Elections

Yerevan—The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) hosted a roundtable discussion today entitled “The Azerbaijani parliamentary elections: Implications for Armenia and Karabagh.”  Participants in the discussion included several members of the Armenian parliament, leading analysts, policy specialists, and representatives from the diplomatic community, international organizations and the media.

Welcoming the participants, ACNIS Director Richard Giragosian assessed the outcome of the election in Azerbaijan, with a focus on the military buildup by Azerbaijan and Baku’s emergence as the primary threat to regional security and stability.  He explained that “as a negotiator, and as a neighbor of Armenia, the recent election in Azerbaijan was important in determining and defining what kind of Azerbaijan Armenia and Karabagh are dealing with. Obviously the elections result shows that Armenia has neither a democratic nor a reliable neighbor.” Giragosian also noted that “after yet another unfree and unfair election, it is now a question whether the Azerbaijani people will actually support the illegitimate government’s threats of war.”

ACNIS Senior Analyst Manvel Sargsian then analyzed the Azerbaijani parliamentary election’s impact on the Mountainous Karabagh Republic. He said that Azerbaijan continued to be a “problematic country” for the international community and that the way to resolve the current problems was through the recognition of Karabagh. “Observing the apathy within Azerbaijani society even during the elections, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev speaks profusely about restarting the Karabagh war. This demonstrates that there is very limited leverage toward influencing the people, and to keep the people ideologically alert, Aliyev needs to constantly hold high the ‘flag’ of a second Karabagh war,” Sargsian noted. He continued to say that “having extracted a positive assessment from the CIS observers” concerning the elections, it actually compelled the European observers to make mild evaluations, “that is, an uncertain international situation has yet again been established with respect to Azerbaijan.”

The presentations were then followed by a series of questions and answers, and featured a lively exchange with the audience.

The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) is a leading independent strategic research center located in Yerevan, Armenia.  As an independent, objective institution committed to conducting professional policy research and analysis, ACNIS strives to raise the level of public debate and seeks to broaden public engagement in the public policy process, as well as fostering greater and more inclusive public knowledge. Founded in 1994, ACNIS is the institutional initiative of Raffi K. Hovannisian, Armenia’s first Minister of Foreign Affairs.  Over the past fifteen years, ACNIS has acquired a prominent reputation as a primary source of professional independent research and analysis covering a wide range of national and international policy issues.

For further information on the Center call (37410) 52-87-80 or 27-48-18; fax (37410) 52-48-46; email root@acnis.am or info@acnis.am; or visit www.acnis.am.

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Armenian version