Expert: Iran exerts pressure on Baku to reduce Turkish influence in the region

06.10.2021, Moscow.

The goal of Iran is to ensure the security of its cargo shipments and reduce Turkey’s influence in Azerbaijan, Deputy Director of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences Aleksandr Skakov said on October 5, Sputnik Armenia news agency reported.

The expert commented on the deterioration of relations between Tehran and Baku. According to his assessment, it’s unlikely that it will come to hostilities between the two countries. Iran feels bypassed after the Karabakh war and now there is rather a war of nerves.

“It got nothing. It has lost less than one might expect, because fortunately for Tehran there are no US or NATO peacekeepers in Nagorno-Karabakh. But, nevertheless, the strengthening of Turkish and Israeli positions in Azerbaijan cannot but cause worry in Iran,” Skakov explained.

According to the expert, the cause of Iran’s discontent is the problem of cargo transit through Armenia, which is very important for Iran.

Skakov noted that Tehran most likely perceives Baku’s behavior as inadequate. “Apparently, there is a feeling in Tehran that Azerbaijan is getting mad. And there is a desire to stop it,” Skakov said.

Among the ways Iran can influence the situation the expert named the military factor (troops and exercises on the border with Azerbaijan) and the ethnic factor – the use of Iranian speaking Talysh Diaspora, although, in Skakov’s opinion, the latter issue should have been considered earlier.

The expert did not rule out that Azerbaijan might make certain concessions that Iran was waiting for as aggravation of relations was not in Baku’s interest.

On October 1, the Iranian armed forces started a large-scale military exercise near the border with Azerbaijan in the north-west of the country. Before that, the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said that the Azerbaijani society had fair questions about why Tehran did not hold such exercises when the Armenian armed forces controlled the border.

Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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