Although certain measures have been taken to peacefully settle the Karabakh conflict since then, no progress has been made. Representatives of the OSCE Minsk Group created for a peaceful settlement (the co-chairs are Russia, France, the United States), have turned into useless touring performers, imitating the work process. It is noteworthy that the co-chairs haven’t even been able to decide who the aggressor is and who the victim is for all these years. This fact alone perfectly illustrates the essence of the OSCE Minsk Group’s work.
Local confrontations break out in the front line from time to time, sometimes escalating into major clashes. For example, at the beginning of April 2016, after a prolonged shelling by the Armenian side of the Azerbaijani villages in the front line, the Azerbaijani army took a number of measures to suppress the aggressive actions of the Armenian army. As a result, the Armenian side has suffered serious losses both of personnel and military equipment. In addition, about 2000 hectares of Azerbaijani territory, including some strategically important positions, were liberated from the Armenian occupation.
The "April War", as some experts and journalists tend to call it, was a shock for Armenia. For about 20 years, the Armenian top leaders have assured that their defense line is perfect and not passable, and that if the Azerbaijani side tries to return its territories by force it will turn out to be a serious defeat and territorial losses for Azerbaijan. Of course, knowledgeable people knew that all these were empty words and hot air. However, the Armenian government has “fed” its public with it for two decades. The April events of 2016 showed the true state of affairs.
Shocked by its defeat in April 2016, the Armenian side, as always, adopted its favorite method - to fight against women and children, to revenge the civilian population for military defeats, or simply intending to intimidate. This has been a favorite method for Armenians throughout the Karabakh conflict. The genocide in Khojaly is a good example. Shortly after the terrible massacre in Khojaly, the current president of Armenia, and then one of the field commanders of Armenians who took part in the massacre, Serzh Sargsyan said to the journalists: "Before Khojaly, the Azerbaijanis thought that we are to be trifled with, they thought that Armenians are not capable of raising a hand against the civilian population. We managed to break this [stereotype]. That's what happened ... ".
The Armenian side has adhered to this tactic throughout the conflict.
Let's go back to these days. We have seen a sharp increase in tension on the front line since the end of June. The Armenian side again began an intense shelling of Azerbaijani settlements. Yesterday, Armenian armed forces fired at the village of Alkhanli in the Fuzuli district of Azerbaijan from grenades launchers and mortars, as a result of shelling, villagers Sahiba Guliyeva, born in 1967, and her 2-year-old granddaughter Zahra Guliyeva, were killed. Sarvinaz Guliyeva, born in 1965, was seriously wounded, and doctors are currently fighting for her life.
What is the OSCE Minsk Group going to do about this? The UN? Or Human Rights Watch, so scrupulously studying human rights violations in the post-Soviet countries? My personal opinion is that, at best, these organizations can confine themselves to a dry, balanced statement. Such a reaction of international institutions generates even more aggression from the Armenian side.
The reader may think that the death of the girl and her grandmother is too insignificant to make the world's giants come into action.
However, let me give you an example, unfortunately as sad as it is. At the moment, the drama of the 10-month-old Briton Charlie Gard is unfolding in Europe. Babe Gard was born with a rare genetic disease: the mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome. The disease is so rare that, according to doctors, only 16 people are affected by it all over the world. At the moment the child does not hear, does not see, cannot move, cry or swallow, and brain injuries are, alas, already irreversible. Therefore, doctors considered it necessary to disconnect the baby from life support devices. However, Charlie’s parents are against this. A part of the British public also supports them. US President Donald Trump suddenly intervened in the case, offering his help to the boy's parents. "If we can save little Charlie Gard, as our friends in Britain and the Pope want, we will be very happy to do it," US President Donald Trump wrote in his Twitter.
Pope Francis published a statement by the pontiff, in which he reports that: "He closely follows the development of the situation, feels closeness with the baby’s parents. The Pontiff prays for them and hopes that their desire to remain with their child until the very end will not be ignored. "
Regardless of the personalities of the Pope and Donald Trump, they can only be praised for these gestures. But they are not going to respond to the murder of an Azerbaijani child, because it did not happen in Europe and because this child was not a citizen of the EU or US.
So, we must rely solely on the reaction of the armed forces of Azerbaijan. The silence of world leaders and international organizations is the mandate given to Azerbaijan for a strong reaction.
However, we should understand and remember that any forceful response from our side will not lead to the cessation of such kind of provocations by Armenian armed forces. The desire to annoy, to hurt more, to revenge on women and children is so great and so deep that the Armenian side will not give it up under any circumstances. It is noteworthy that having (as they state) the ability to strike at military and civil infrastructure of Azerbaijan, the Armenian military still prefers to aim at the civilian population ...
Ali Hajizade, political analyst, head of the project “The Great Middle East”