Strategic bond between Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey

Published: November 7, 2018
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The writer is a prominent regional expert on Azerbaijan and the Central Asia region. He is the head of geopolitics/economics in one of the strategic institutes of the federal government of Pakistan

The writer is a prominent regional expert on Azerbaijan and the Central Asia region. He is the head of geopolitics/economics in one of the strategic institutes of the federal government of Pakistan

To clear many misconceptions that might have arisen from a recent article titled Strange estrangement by M Abrar Ameen, I am duty-bound to remove these as well as distortions of history while providing proper insight into the correct perspective with which the whole range of ties between Pakistan, Turkey and Azerbaijan must be viewed. It is unfortunate that the writer has shown an unnecessarily soft corner for Armenia — which is little else but the aggressor and initiator of a “cultivation of genocide.” Realising this fact alone would have settled once and for all the writer’s query of why Pakistan has no diplomatic ties with Armenia. There is simply no need for that.

Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey have cultural, social, religious and civilisational ties. Even now one can find signs of Pakistani culture in these countries which were preserved by the people of the two countries. While visiting Azerbaijan, I personally witnessed the 15th century Multan Saray in the centre of Baku built by Baku rulers of that period for the merchants from Multan, Pakistan. Both countries share various linkages with Pakistan. Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey have also “strategic dialogue/partnership” which reflects the real essence and strength of their relations. Governments and people of Turkey and Azerbaijan have been very kind and supportive to Pakistan and its people since inception.

Azerbaijan and Turkey always supports Pakistan’s stance on Kashmir, the leadership of these countries have openly stated that Jammu and Kashmir dispute should be settled on the basis of the relevant resolutions of the Security Council. Azerbaijan and Turkey are one of the four members of the OIC Contact Group on Kashmir.

I want to ask Abrar Ameen what can possibly be achieved through the recognition of Armenia by Pakistan? Not a thing, except hurting the hearts of more than 130 million Turkic Turks and Azerbaijani Turks in their countries and in the world who have very high respect for Pakistan and Pakistanis. With its 3 million population, most of them impoverished, and its high and alarming rate of brain drain, poverty and unemployment ratios, Armenia is not a reliable partner. Although Azerbaijan opened its doors to Armenians throughout history but they have time again proved to be unreliable. Recognition of Armenia will achieve nothing but strain ties between strategic partners.

M Abrar Ameen suggested that by establishing “Pakistan-Armenia Culture Forum” bilateral ties would be achieved between the two sides. Culture is a holistic approach whereas Armenian cruelty is well established. Culture is the reflection of harmonious human spirits whereas Armenia is the birthplace of horrendous crimes against humanity. Moreover, climate, nature and natural resources have been polluted because of Armenia.

Such a proposed forum cannot be icebreaker because of Armenia’s crimes against helpless Azeri peoples living in occupied areas. It is not a matter of cultural association alone it is also matter of trust, traditions and tumults where Azerbaijanis laid down their precious lives for their beloved country. Armenia occupied more than 20 per cent of Azerbaijan whereas Nagorno-Karabakh remained an ancient and historical part of Azerbaijan. Armenia conducted the policy of ethnic cleansing against Azerbaijanis in Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh and 7 other regions of Azerbaijan. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the bleeding wound for the Republic of Azerbaijan which is also a looming security threat to the whole region of South Caucasus. Azerbaijan’s successive leaders and people have been striving hard to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with Armenia. Azerbaijan has never used violence against Armenia whereas the Khojaly genocide was an ethnic cleansing by Armenia forces against helpless Azerbaijanis. It was an act of barbarism and naked use of military power but it could not produce any dent in the spirit of Azerbaijanis.

Pakistan still does not recognise Armenia as an independent state because of its illegal occupation of Azerbaijani territories and supports Turkey whole-heartedly against deceptive and groundlessly false notions claimed by Armenia. Pakistan’s houses of parliament and their standing committees on foreign affairs have demonstrated solidarity with the government and people of the Republic of Azerbaijan. It condemned the occupation of Azerbaijani territories by Armenia and the genocide committed by Armenian armed forces in the Azerbaijani town of Khojaly on February 26, 1992 against the civilian population. The Foreign Ministry of Pakistan knows Armenian illegal occupation on Azerbaijan’s various regions. Pakistan reaffirmed the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Azerbaijan within its internationally recognised borders. It demanded implementation of resolutions of the UN Security Council and the UN General Assembly on immediate, complete and unconditional withdrawal of all Armenian forces from all the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and called upon the international community and international organisations to urge Armenia to implement these decisions. The Republic of Azerbaijan is not an aggressor. The right of Azerbaijan on Nagorno-Karabakh territories is even recognised by the the UN Security Council which adopted resolutions condemning the use of force against Azerbaijan and the occupation of its territories in 1993. It reaffirmed respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, reconfirmed that the Nagorno-Karabakh region is an integral part of Azerbaijan and demanded the immediate, full and unconditional withdrawal of the occupying forces from all the occupied territories.

Azerbaijan has been a victim of planned ethnic cleansing and genocide by Armenians for 200 years. The Azerbaijani population was repeatedly subjected to gross human rights violations, ethnic cleansing and deportation accompanied by inhuman and degrading treatment by Armenian nationalists. The most horrible one of such tragedies against the Azerbaijanis is the genocide committed 100 years ago, on March 31, 1918. Since March of 1918, thousands of the Azerbaijani civilians have been killed on the ground of their nationality; people were burned alive; rare historical monuments, schools, hospitals, mosques were ruined.

I conclude Pakistan does not recognise Armenia because it is a terrorist state which illegally occupies various regions of Azerbaijan. Pakistan does not recognise Armenia because it is a fascist state which uses tactics of genocide, water terrorism, nuclear terrorism and the last but not the least, it is destroyer of holy and cultural buildings, mosques and other signs of Islamic heritage. Pakistan does not have any direct conflict with even Israel but does not recognise it because it is against the freedom and sovereignty of Palestine that is why Pakistan does not have diplomatic ties with it.

I do wish the writer of the article had first understood the historic, political, social and economic dynamics of Nagorno Karabakh, studied the roots of the relations of Pakistan with brotherly Azerbaijan and Turkey and before writing in favour of Armenia. Although we live in an arena of artificial intelligence where globalisation plays a very important role still the spirit of humanity and justice must not appear too blurred in the world. The survival of humanity is not merely based on power politics, we must stand united against cruelty, injustice and genocide. Armenia is an icon of planned genocide against peaceful Azerbaijanis, Azeris and Turks and we should not allow their designs to prevail at any cost. 

Published in The Express Tribune, November 7th, 2018.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • kulbhushan yadav
    Nov 7, 2018 - 11:08AM

    IN 15th Century, Multan was part of India. So basically Baku rulers facilitated Indian traders from Multan :). Recommend

  • Jasmin
    Nov 7, 2018 - 2:31PM

    Very well explained. Correct and informative. Armenians don’t like Muslims. Armenia is the country where no Muslim lives.. Recommend

  • Alfi
    Nov 7, 2018 - 3:05PM

    Very good article! I agree with your views.Recommend

  • Kashan Ahmed
    Nov 7, 2018 - 9:33PM

    I am really amazed how narrow-minded and people with bigoted view-point works in a federal government agency and claim to be expert of the region. The writer seriously have some serious animosity towards Armenians. The writer has failed to even mention the Armenian Genocide of 1915 by the hand of Ottoman Empire. I know Pakistan sides with Turks on this issue but one cannot ignore facts of history.

    And it is funny that Turkish citizens can enter Armenia with Visa on Arrival and Azerbaijan’s citizens can cross the border visa-free. When the world is progressing with relations being established like warming up of Israel and Arab states, we Pakistanis tend to have higher than holy stance in foreign relations. Now is the time of need when Pakistan needs to have a more open foreign policy and work needs to be done to have diplomatic relations with Armenia And Israel.Recommend

  • Vikram
    Nov 8, 2018 - 3:02AM

    Very surprised that the author didn’t suggest Pakistan should break off all ties and derecognize India. The points he has raised are in many ways equivalent. And VERY TRUE from the same principled perspective. But what to do… his countrymen cannot do without cricket and Indian movies/soaps! Such a shame… if only Armenia or Israel had the ‘power’ of BCCI and Bollywood :)Recommend

  • numbersnumbers
    Nov 8, 2018 - 8:38AM

    All look up “Armenian Genocide”!
    Then decide if Author is biased!Recommend

  • S Zafar Iqbal
    Nov 8, 2018 - 1:19PM

    An excellent article. It is good that it bases its argument on facts and not on emotions, or personal likes or dislikes. To his credit, the author provides a good overview of the geopolitical factors that need to be taken into consideration in establishing foreign relations.

    The reality that needs to be acknowledged is that: Turkey has always been Pakistan’s most reliable, trustworthy, and sincere friend, without any expectation in returns. And Pakistan has always reciprocated the gesture in equal measure.

    Similarly, the fact is that: Azerbaijan is a victim of Armenian aggression. Armenia has illegally occupied Azerbaijan’s internationally recognized territory. It has been accused of ethnic cleansing, a modern day genocide of Azerbaijanis living in the occupied territory. Naturally, Pakistan supports the underdog, the victim of aggression, Azerbaijan.

    With regard to Armenia and their accusation of genocide, the issue needs to be studied at length. This is an emotionally charged issue, with no middle ground, only positions strictly pro or against. But facts have their place in understanding this dispute.
    Impartial historians who have studied the fights between the Ottoman Turkish forces and the Armenians guerrilla fighters who had turned against their own country, and helped the invading Russian forces against Turks came to the conclusion that atrocities committed on both sides were spontaneous, but “do not technically fit the definition of genocide largely because there is no evidence that the killings were well-planned in advance”.
    So, Pakistan’ position in this matter is fair and just, as there is no justification to unilaterally hold Turkey responsible for the atrocities committed by both parties over 100 years ago.

    All wars are horror. All killings, massacres, and genocides, no matter who did to whom, must be condemned.

    What we must condemn today are the modern day genocides taking place right now in the full glare of the 21st Century, in Yemen, and in the occupied Palestine. Recommend

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