In May 2014 the 20th year of the cease-fire agreement with the mediation of Russia in order to present the Armenian invasion against Azerbaijan temporarily is going to be completed. As a result of the invasion nearly 50000 people died, Azerbaijan’s 7 region not belonging to this area were conquered by Armenian Armed Forces, Armenia proved its participation in the war by signing the Cease-fire Agreement (although it denies the participation in the conflict and claims that it is only “the interested side”). First of all to my personal mind, “Bishkek protocol” plays a “soothing” role having a symbolic character. To prove my opinion I want to note that according to Vladimir Kazimirov who was the mediator in the signing of protocol being the former co-chair of OSCE’s Minsk Group, the protocol was not objective and didn’t have a serious legislative power. He wrote: “As the document had no legislative character and responsibilities, it was an appeal to peace or political address. Therefore, the amendments demanded by Azerbaijan weren’t of great importance. However, Baku agreed to sign the document which identified its need”. It allows us to make sure of the opinion “Bishkek protocol can simply be considered formal”. The main point of the protocol was the temporary peace agreement to stop the war. The regions had been occupied, but some people claim that those regions were given to them by ourselves, however, it isn’t true.
One of the outstanding Turkish politicians Turgut Er writes reviewing the political processes around the signing of Bishkek protocol and the cease-fire: “Although it is known as Bishkek protocol, it has been signed in Baku”.
At that time Afieddin Jalilov was sent to the signing of Bishkek protocol. The more exact document was to be signed on May 5 1994 in Bishkek. The same document was to be signed by the vice-speaker of Azerbaijan Milli Mejlis Afieddin Jaliov, the chairman of Armenian Milli Mejlis Babken Ararktsyan, the member of NKEI , present as “NKR parliament speaker” at that time Karen Baburyan, the chairman of ISU states Parliamentary Assembly Vladimir Shumeyko, the chairman of Kirghizstan Supreme Soviet Medetkan Sherimkulov, competent representative of RF president, the leader of Russian mediation mission Vladimir Kazimirov and the leader of secretariat of Parliamentary Assembly Council Michael Krotov.
In the signing of the suggested protocol it was informed to Baku that the cease-fire agreement would be only between Azerbaijan and Armenia. At that time the co-chair of OSCE’s Minsk Group Vladimir Kazimirov who was representing Russia in this process, added fictional “Nagorno Karabakh Republic” to the protocol. It seemed as though one of the sides signing the document was “Nagorno Karabakh Republic”. Ar that time they tried to show the fictional republic as a side in the negotiations. When seeing it Afieddin Jalilov immediately called Haydar Aliyev informing him of the situation. Haydar Aliyev ordered him to return back that night. That day Afieddin Jalilov returned back without signing the protocol.
After Afieddin Jalilov left Bishkek, the co-chair of Russia in Minsk Group Kazimirov immediately came to Baku to correct his mistake. During the meeting in Baku Haydar Aliyev demands the removing of “NKR” expression straight away. After the amendments of the Azerbaijan and Armenia representatives Kazimirov didn’t object to the signing of the document. It was decided that fictional “NKR” expression would be removed from the document which had been prepared in 3 copies – Azerbaijan, Russian and Armenian languages and Azerbaijan and Armenian communities expression should be added to it.
After that with the participation of the experts, the protocol was compiled in three issues I remember that after Haydar Aliyev’s persistence, Kazimirov signed about the legislative power of the document which had been amended by Azerbaijan side.
In the fifth paragraph of Bishkek protocol the word “occupied territories” were replaced with “conquered territories” and it was mentioned the observers who would be placed in the front line after cease-fire, to be “international observers’ mission”.
At that time the process of explaining the significance of Bishkek protocol to Azerbaijan public was going on. In Russian media, particularly “Независимая газета”, “Новое время”, “Mocковские новости”, “Bpeмя новостей” and “Koмсомольская правда” newspapers stressed mainly the sign of Bishkek protocol, Azerbaijan’s incuding the thesis of the protocol.
But in Armenian media the join of fictional Nagorno Karabakh to Armenia or the recognition of Nagorno Karabakh as an independent state was mentioned. in most writings devoted to the theme OSCE and its Minsk group’s future activities were mentioned. However in Azerbaijan media Minsk Group was both trusted and it was thought to be of no importance. It was shown in almost all means of media.
“Bishkek protocol” was signed by Azerbaijan on 8 May, 1994. The document was signed by the chirman of the Supreme Soviet Rasul Guliyev, the mayor of Shusha region Nizami Bahmanov as a leader of Nagorno Karabakh Azeri community, from Armenian side the chairman of the Armenian parliament Babken Ararksyan and as a leader of Armenian community “the chairman of NKR pariament” Karen Baburyan. The process of signing was concluded likes this: Rasul Guliyev added N. Bahmanov’s name to the list in Kazimirov’s presence, dropped a line for his signature, added two more amendments to the text of the document and put his own signature next to A.Jalilov’s name. When searching Bahmanov it turned out that he wasn’t in Baku that day. On May 5 took the photocopy of the protocol signed by 6 participants and amended by R. Guliyev and returned to Moscow without waiting for Bahmanov.
The document came into force on May 12, 1994.
The protocol signed by six out of seven participants of the meeting was sent to Moscow by fax and later the original of the document was delivered there. It is supposed that the original is being kept in the archives of MFA of RF.
It should be mentioned that, according to this document, the sides were soon to sign “Great Peace Agrement” thanks to the international mediation.
According to “Bishkek protocol” cease-fire regime was to be accompained by real peace steps. As for the document, “in the nearest days” “reliable peace agreement” which mean the emptying of the invaded territories, the restoration of communocations and the returning of the refugees was to be signed. However, “the nearest days” was replaced by firstly “months”, later “years”.
But the items of “Bishkek protocol” which implied the declaration of the cease-fire between Azerbaijan and Armenia could be realized. OSCE’s usless activity, Russia’s one sided position, the pressure of Armenian lobby in the USA and France prolong the term of remaining the occupied regions under armenian deservation. From the process of making peace to following the cease fire regime – everything has been put on OSCE’s Minsk Group.
They either can’t manage it or don’t want to do.
At the same time in spite of cease-fire agreement the fire hasn’t ceased yet.
And this is the cause for Azerbaijan to chose a new strategy !
The scientific official of NSAA,
The chairman of the Diaspora and Lobby Scientific Research centre,
The professor of Political Philosophy,