Yerevan/Moscow: Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has issued a warning. Pashinyan stated that Russia had promised to intervene and accept responsibility for Armenia if a threat was posed to its security. A fierce war is ongoing between Armenia and Azerbaijan since the past ten days and has caused heavy casualties on both sides. Turkey has provided open support for Azerbaijan and directly threatened it would not withdraw unless it takes control of the entire Nagorno-Karabakh region. At the same time, Russian intelligence agencies warned the Nagorno-Karabakh region would turn into a centre for Islamic terrorism if the war continued.
The Armenian Prime Minister has hinted at possible Russian participation in the Armenia-Azerbaijan war soon as he said, ‘Russia has a military base as also a joint air defence system operational in Armenia. The bilateral agreement between the two nations clearly mentions that the Russian military deployed at the base would intervene if ever a matter did arise with respect to Armenian security. The deal has provisions that mention the grounds under which Russia may intervene at such a time, and we hope Moscow will comply with the deal’. Russian President Vladimir Putin has held talks with the Armenian Prime Minster twice in the past ten days. Nikol Pashinyan’s statements, therefore, assume much significance.
A Russian military base is operational in the Armenian city of Gyumri where 3,000 troops are currently deployed. In addition, tanks, artillery guns, armoured vehicles as even MiG-29 fighter jets and the S-300 air defence system are stationed here as well. A few years ago, the Russian commander in charge of the military base had made a statement where he said the Russian Army would step in if ever Azerbaijan takes military action to seize control of Nagorno-Karabakh. However, considering the current war in the region, Russia military has not reacted as yet.
Meanwhile, Russian intelligence agencies have warned that a large number of terrorists and hired mercenaries were arriving from the Middle East as the Armenia-Azerbaijan war continues to rage. The Director of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), Sergey Naryshkin, warned that ‘Hundreds of hardliners had entered into the war-zone while thousands were preparing to do the same. If the inflow continued, the South Caucasus region might turn into a new centre for international terrorist groups. The region may serve as a terror launchpad for perpetrating attacks into Russia and other nearby countries.’ Moreover, Syrian President Basher Al-Assad has also affirmed that Turkey had sent Syrian terrorists to fight on behalf of Azerbaijan in the war against which he could provide evidence.
Previously, French President Emmanuel Macron had directly accused Turkey of sending terrorists into the Armenia-Azerbaijan battle. Even though Turkey rejected the claims, individual videos were released that showed terrorist participation in the conflict. Local groups have confirmed the information and asserted security firms were involved too. As of now, nearly 150 Turkish military officials and advisors are said to be deployed in Azerbaijan.