ELECTIONS, GEOPOLITICS, AND TIME
So, the July 19 presidential elections in the NKR became part of history, but, surely, certain time they will still occupy the minds of political scientists and experts. It should be noted that the estimates and opinions on the NKR presidential elections were expressed both before and after the electoral process, and their range was quite wide - from well-disposed to negative.
Although it should be recognized that no open condemnation was expressed. Except, of course, the sharp reaction by Azerbaijan and Turkey, which was easy to forecast, due to well-known reasons, and therefore does not deserve serious attention.
Surely, we are, first of all, interested in the position and assessments of international structures and observers carrying out direct monitoring of the elections. Comparative analysis of the estimates that were given by international structures to the earlier election processes in the NKR and the last presidential election lets us talk about some positive trends. Of course, neither the OSCE nor the European Union, which was also predicted, did not approve the presidential elections, but they didn't either flatly condemned them. Among those who claimed not to recognize the elections were Chairman of the OSCE Permanent Council Oen O'Leary and head of the European diplomacy, Catherine Ashton. A corresponding statement was also issued by the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs, who, as Catherine Ashton, said the elections should not prejudge the future status of Nagorno-Karabakh at the negotiations on the peaceful settlement of the conflict.
In fact, from the diplomatic point of view, such a statement is quite right, as the negotiation process within the Minsk Group is still underway. However, the fears of international organizations on the possible predetermination of the political status of Nagorno-Karabakh are completely useless, since the presidential elections in the NKR do not include such a function and have, so to say, a purely domestic purpose, or, they are focused on the formation of governmental structures to control the state.
In the same sense, the change in the tone of the international mediators' statements attracts the attention. The OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs themselves recognized the "need for the formation of de facto authorities in Nagorno-Karabakh to ensure democracy and to maintain the public life". That is, we can state that the mediators fairly can no longer ignore the political processes in the NKR, in particular, the establishment of legitimate authorities via nationwide elections. Moreover, holding elections in the NKR in a real competition, as it happened on July 19, should only be welcomed by international organizations, as it clearly confirms the commitment of both the people and authorities of the Republic to the democratic principles of civil society. Legitimately elected state power is predictable and acts responsibly, which is very important in the modern civilized world.
I must say that the assessments of the international observers, who monitored the presidential elections, advantageously differed from the views of European officials and were much more specific. And it is not only and not so much the estimates of the electoral process unanimously recognized by actually all the observers as "a democratic act of free will of the Republic's citizens corresponding to the international standards of the electoral law". In this case, important are the political assessments. As it was rightly noted by Director of the Polish branch of the European Centre for Geopolitical Studies Mateusz Piskorski, "just the democratically elected President, Parliament, and representatives of other branches of power can negotiate on behalf of the NKR". Members of the Russian observation mission also noted the importance of the elections for the negotiation process in the format of the OSCE Minsk Group. Director of the RF Institute of the Newest States Alexey Martynov stated bluntly that "Nagorno-Karabakh is quite an established state and from a legal point of view has every right to be fully represented in the negotiation process". Let us note that the conclusion of actually all the observing missions, made up on the presidential elections, state the compliance of the level of democratic development in Nagorno-Karabakh with the standards of the countries with developed democracy. This means that they can serve a peculiar signal to the international community to appreciate the efforts of the NKR people and authorities and to legally recognize its independence, which, according to the observers, it quite established.
As for the fact that this signal does not yet reach the international structures displaying, to put it mildly, political indifference towards Nagorno-Karabakh in terms of not so much the recognition of its independence, but, at least, its return to the negotiating table, then this issue has quite understandable and known reasons. Unfortunately, Nagorno-Karabakh became a hostage of the geopolitical struggle of the superpowers, which cannot determine their own interests in our region. Then, is not the trust to them as bearers and apologists of democratic values lost? And the trust towards the mediators in the process of the Karabakh conflict settlement, which, by definition, are considered to be impartial? And what will help to restore this trust?
But, these are the questions that can be answered only by time. The time when the critical mass of positive assessments of independent international observers will completely outweigh the principle of political or conjuncture expediency, by which the international organizations are guided, dependent on the interests of the major extra-regional forces. In the words of the observers, we'd like to be sure that the time will certainly come.
Editor-in-Chief of Azat Artsakh newspaper
- 1Deputy of the RF State Duma, member of the Liberal-Democratic Party Alexander BALBEROV participated in the July 19 presidential election in the NKR as an observer; expressing his opinion on the elections, ...
- 1783 Agreement between Russia and Georgia at Fort Georgievsk. Georgia is under Russia patronage.
- 1854 Battle of Kyoorook-Dara.
- 1862 Yeghia Tntessyan leaves Constantinople for Hajin concerning the rebels of Zeitooun.
- 1870 Birth of Leninist Guards representative, Issahak Lalayants near Terek (Kzlar). He died in 1933 in Moscow.
- 1923 Signature of the Peace Treaty of Lausanne. It replaced the Treaty of Sevres, and neglected the Armenian Question.
- 1927 Inauguration of the "Dzor" power station.
- 1957 Creation of the Armenian SSR State Committee of Television and Broadcasting.