Cease-fire, explained

Cease-fire, explained

On october 9 late at night after 11 hours of negotiations humanitarian ceasefire was agreed by Armenia and Azerbaijan after Russian mediation. The ceasefire was to start October 10 at 12:00. What happened and where it may bring, explained by Armenian MP Mikael Zolyan.

Did the war end?

Of course, we hope that the ceasefire will bring an end to the war but, unfortunately, we’ve seen before how Aliyev’s regime has violated international agreements so we have to be ready for any development.
In fact, this is a big pressure on the Turkish side to continue fighting and Aliyev himself painted himself into a corner, announcing previously that the Azerbaijani army has entered certain towns and villages which haven’t been captured by them. Now, they’re trying to show that their announcements were true, which results in the continuation of the fighting.
In any case it will be hard for the Aliyev’s regime to ignore the ceasefire completely, as it was a ceasefire brokered by Russia and their ignorance would be a certain diplomatic challenge towards Russia. So I think that eventually the ceasefire will be upheld but we still have to find out how long it will last.


Why did the sides agree on this meeting?

The sides agreed to that meeting, because Armenia always said that we’re not interested in a war and we’ve always been for peaceful negotiations. The Azerbaijani side agreed to the meeting because they realized that their military plan has failed and their attempt to capture a significant part of Artsakh through a “Blitzkrieg” has failed as well and they had no other choice but to agree with the negotiations. An important role was played by the Minsk Group Co-Chairs, Russia, France, and the US, which were actively involved in the process.


What is substantive negotiations?

Any negotiations that happen will be substantive, obviously, but it's also obvious that no negotiation can happen until the fighting is really stopped, and the current situation is far from that. Azerbaijani side has maximalist approach and it will take a long time until the substantive negotiations can start. 


Is Turkey dropped out of the conflict?

Obviously, the ceasefire means that Turkey is not able to be a part of the negotiations process the way it wanted to and this is one of the reasons why the latter is violated. This is Erdogan’s attempt to take down the ceasefire.


What to expect next?

As I said we have to be ready for any scenario and the violation of the ceasefire was not a surprise. Armenian and Artsakh military forces and the Armenian diplomatic corp were ready for that.
The preferred scenario would be that the ceasefire is held and peace returns to Artsakh but of course, once again we have to be ready for any scenario.