“Russia continues to secretly arm Armenia, bypassing all international rules, agreements and treaties.” This sentence, unfortunately, has already become trivial, a reflection of the present situation.
The Armenian leadership, despite all the upbeat statements, is scared to death of direct military confrontation with Azerbaijan. The Armenian militarists are well aware that the military, economic, technical, human potential of their country does not give it a slightest chance not only for victory, but even for balancing the situation in the event of a war with Baku.
The Azerbaijani army, equipped with the latest weapons and military equipment, will reduce the Armenian Armed Forces to zero: after all, not only the military forces, but all the people of Azerbaijan, young and old, are waiting for the order of the Commander-in-Chief.
President Ilham Aliyev, commenting on the latest nonsensical statements of the Armenian authorities, said: “Try to recognize the independence of Nagorno-Karabakh! Just try it! If Armenia has the courage, let it recognize the “Nagorno-Karabakh Republic”. “I say to the Armenian authorities, recognize it today, if you don’t do it, then you’re afraid. Come to your senses. There will be no negotiations with the criminal regime. Therefore, they must understand from the outset that it is completely unacceptable. Other conditions are also similar to this one. By setting out unacceptable conditions, Armenia actually undermines the negotiation process and attempts to change the format of the negotiations, because the negotiations are being conducted between Azerbaijan and Armenia.”
The clear, wise and principled statements of the leader of Azerbaijan seriously worried official Yerevan.
The Armenians are now desperately trying to fill the huge gaps in their defense lines, and obtain at least a small fraction of the necessary military equipment and weaponry as soon as possible.
….. Today the cargo aircraft Il-76 TD (tail number 86837) of the Russian Air Forces flew to Armenia again. As in the previous flights, the freighter delivered to the Armenians the newest weaponry and military equipment produced in Russia.
Yesterday, the cargo aircraft An-30 (tail number RFF7709) took off from the Mozdok airfield, flew to Yerevan, and from there – to Syrian city of Latakia. Thus, the An-30 crossed the airspaces of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Iran, and Armenia.
And this flight was also shrouded in secrecy. The relevant diplomatic permits from Kazakhstan and Iran were obtained for the flight. Turkmenistan did not give such a permission.
Transporting Russian weaponry and military equipment, the An-30 flew secretly, beyond the international air routes, and without contact and air traffic coordination in the spaces of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan.
It should be noted that on August 15, an Il-76 military transport aircraft of the Russian Air Force under registration number RA78847 made a shuttle flight along the route Mineralnye Vody-Yerevan-Mineralnye Vody. Having flown in the airspaces of Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Iran and Armenia, the freighter covered 2035 km. Flight time was 3 hours 30 minutes.
We have not only the flight route, but also other relevant data. Thus, the Il-76 TD of the Russian Air Force, again with a painted over fuselage and the flag of Armenia drawn on it – of course, everything should look as if it is the cargo aircraft of the Armenian Air Forces is passing through the air space – yesterday, on August 15, took off from a military airfield in Min-Vody at 06:15 local time. Carrying out flight number RFF 8663, the plane headed to Aktau (Kazakhstan). From there to the south, flying over the Turkmen Turkmenbashi, Iranian Nowshehr and Rasht, and entered the airspace of Armenia. Further, the aircraft was visible over the sky of the Armenian Meghri. And finally, the Il-75 TD landed at Zvartnots airport in the capital of Armenia, Yerevan. It was 18:36 by local time.
The unloading of the aircraft ended in 7 hours and today, at 02:07 local time, the Il-76 TD headed back as flight RFF8664 along the arrival route. The aircraft landed at the Min-Vody airfield in the morning, at 05:37.
The Il-76TD of the Russian Air Force reached Armenia in a winding, detour way and returned in the same manner. A direct flight from Min-Vody to Yerevan would be much faster, more efficient and shorter, but Georgia, as it did before, prohibited the transportation of weapons and military equipment through its airspace to Armenia
It is for this reason that the Russian pilots had to fly a difficult, complicated route. The same routes that were previously used to deliver weapons and military equipment to Armenia. Secretly, with smoke and mirrors, sneakily – in order to leave the relevant structures of the OSCE and the European Union in the dark. But secretly arming Armenia, and circumventing the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), Russia violates all (!) international agreements, which it signed and ratified itself. In addition, Russia does not need no unnecessary noise and attention to its military supplies: after all, the country is a de jure co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, which means that it must, it is simply obliged to strive for de-escalations of tensions not only in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, but also on the Azerbaijani-Armenian border. Russia is also positioning itself as a state, which desires the soonest resolution of the Karabakh conflict with every fiber of its soul.
But that’s not all. Sadly, not all.
Military transport Il-76 TD of the Russian Air Force also flew along the Tehran-Yerevan-Al Kuwait-Tehran route. The shuttle flight, numbered QFZ 9959, according to our data, was of an exclusively secretive nature, since the aircraft was packed full with Russian weaponry and military equipment. And in the same illegal and secretive manner, as it was in recent weeks, bypassing all the relevant international agreements and treaties that it signed, and not content with just covert arming of Armenia, Russia now supplies arms to Kuwait through Yerevan. And from there, by the same route, military equipment produced in that country is delivered to Armenia.
Russia’s “shuttle tactics” are very dangerous: Moscow, under the cover of loud statements about “the need to observe the ceasefire”, is trying hard to achieve at least apparent, illusory appearance of parity in weaponry and military equipment between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
In addition, the latest Russian-made weapons and military equipment, secretly supplied to the Armenians, should also increase the readiness of the Armenian armed forces for attacks by Azerbaijani UAVs and combat drones.
Official Moscow is trying in every possible way to cover up the supply of military equipment to the Armenians, as Russia is trying to put a brave face on a sorry business, i.e., the official Moscow does not want to tarnish in any way its reputation of a wise, strong, powerful and peaceful northern neighbor.
Sadly, in reality, it is not so simple.
In recent weeks there has been an intense flight traffic on the route Rostov-Minvody-Aktau-Turkmenbashi-Novoshehr-Rasht-Meghri-Yerevan and, naturally, back. Moreover, during the armed provocation organized by Armenia on the border with Azerbaijan, when the Armenians tried to attack the Tovuz region with heavy mortar and artillery fire, and immediately after the fighting, 9 flights were made from Russia to Armenia.
At the height of the hostilities, on July 17 – 2 flights were made. Then, one flight – on July 18, 20, 27, 29, August 4, and two flights on August 6.
So, over the past 27 days, more than 510 tons of military cargo have been delivered from Russia to Armenia.
We wrote about the types and inventory of lethal weapons that Russia supplied to Armenia.
It should also be noted that during the attack on the Tovuz region of Azerbaijan, Armenia immediately used new weapons and military equipment, formally purchased from Russia, which in fact, it received completely free of charge.
It was after these urgent and secret deliveries aimed to combat drones and attack UAVs of Azerbaijan that the Armenians deployed at our borders the Krasukha electronic warfare systems, the Avtobaza-M 1L222M passive electronic intelligence systems, the mobile radar complex for detecting aerodynamic and ballistic objects at medium and high altitudes 55Zh6M “Sky-M”, as well as Russian military GSM-repeaters.
But all the attempts and preparations of the Armenians were in vain: the UAVs of the Azerbaijani army destroyed by precise strikes not only military equipment and artillery installations, mortar crews and batteries of multiple launch rocket systems, but also destroyed howitzers, leveled with the ground control points, military warehouses, communication routes, pillboxes and bunkers of the enemy.
It was indeed an open act of aggression, as Armenia, violating all existing international laws and generally accepted unwritten rules of conduct of states, in the dead of the night began an intensive shelling not only of the positions of the Azerbaijani army in the frontier Tovuz region, but it also targeted civilians, villages and roads.
The Armenian side tried to capture several villages and, most importantly, the Garadash height with the aim of controlling the surrounding territories, creating a fortified stronghold and gaining a military advantage.
But they failed. The Armenian military received a well-deserved and very severe blow, and was forced to retreat, losing dozens of its soldiers and officers.
The number of killed and wounded Armenian soldiers is still kept secret in Yerevan, in order to not disgrace themselves and repeat the dark days for the Armenian leadership, as it was four years ago, after the April “four-day war”.
Official Moscow constantly declares that it is interested in a stable, peaceful South Caucasus. Both Azerbaijan and Armenia are seen by Russia, in official terms, as “strategic partners”, and in simple terms, as countries in the zone of Russian vital interests. The peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is certainly important for Russia. But given the extreme complexity of this issue, Moscow should in no way be interested in maintaining the current status quo. Moreover, Russia, having signed two international agreements, agreed with the unacceptability of the status quo in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Clearly, the very fact of the sale of large quantities of weapons to Armenians by Russia, the co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, which mediates the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, is top of political absurdity.
It’s not worth it, because the Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, an unreliable servant of two masters, will inevitably betray Russia. All of his domestic and foreign policy is determined from abroad, by those circles and forces that made this person the head of government, the leader of the country.
For Pashinyan, Russia is just a convenient gravy train, a defender from threats and an aid fund, from where Armenia draws money in the form of soft loans and material and financial support. The Armenians will not return the money received – they have no intention to do such “stupidity”.
Apparently, after a while Russia will have to come to terms with the loss of an outpost in the South Caucasus, lament over the “dastardly betrayal of an ally”, and Russian analysts, political experts and media representatives will angrily exclaim: “How could they do this to us, eh?!”
Alas, such expressions have been pronounced in Moscow many times in recent years, when billions of dollars in grant aid, the transfer of weapons and military equipment, full diplomatic and political support for unjust deeds did not in the least prevent Russia’s “allies and brothers” from demonstratively slamming the door and leaving to join the Western bloc.
Even if the IL-76 TD planes will fly day and night, carrying weapons for the lost, impoverished, hopeless, but aggressive Armenia, ruled by an illiterate, extravagant leader who does not have any moral principles.
As for the secret flights of the Russian Air Force cargo aircraft to the capitals of Iran and Kuwait, we believe that the heads of the diplomatic missions of these countries, constantly declaring “unwavering Islamic solidarity with brotherly Azerbaijan,” should be summoned to the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry for explanations.
There are many ways of clandestine transportation: in addition to the obvious fact that Moscow secretly arms Armenia, Russia also bypasses international treaties, restrictions and sanctions, sending weapons and military equipment to Kuwait and Syria.
In any case, all such instances require thorough investigation.
Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Milli.Az
Specially for Day.Az