Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Azerbaijan Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov on April 23, 2013 in Jerusalem, Israel
A report on the suspension of the sale of Israeli arms to Azerbaijan was released following last month’s visit to Armenia by the Israeli Regional Cooperation Minister, Tzachi Hanegbi. According to news reports, Israel has not only given up the sale of drone operators to Azerbaijan, but also put the suspension of the sale of Orbiter 1K suicide drones and air defense systems to this country on its agenda. The occupying regime of Israel has also asked military commanders in Baku not to use the weapons purchased from Israel against the Armenian forces, while the main purpose of Baku is to use these weapons against the Armenian Army.
Evidence suggests that Israel’s negative attitude toward arms sales to Azerbaijan has been the result of the activities ofthe Armenian lobby in Israel, and some high-ranking officials and the media in Baku have confirmed this issue as well.
Recently, the Israeli media have uncovered the possibility of selling Spike anti-tank missiles to Armenia, which had been talked about in the Israeli Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi’s visit to Yerevan. Hanegbi has been responsible for coordinating the intelligence agencies of the Zionist regime (2003-2006) under former Prime Minister of Israel Ariel Sharon, and has served as the Chairman of the Knesset’s Security and Foreign Affairs Committee (2006-2010). At a press conference with Hanegbi, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia, Shavarsh Kocharyan, said that Israel was one of the largest exporters of military equipment to Azerbaijan, and was ready to sell military equipment to Armenia as well.
The announcement of the signing of a deal for selling the Israeli Spike anti-tank missiles to Armenia in August, and the interruption in the delivery of the Israeli drone operators have alarmed Baku’s military officials, since this will make the Azerbaijani Army lose one of the factors for its military superiority over the Armenian tanks. Israeli officials have announced thatIsrael is willing to cooperate with Armenia at all levels in terms of military, and sell advanced military equipment to Yerevan. The Israeli Ministry of Regional Cooperation has decided to expand Israel’s relations with Armenia in all areas, and this regime is faced with no restrictions on the sale of weapons to this country.
Perhaps this concern was the reason behind the trip of Colonel General Zakir Hasanov, the Minister of Defense of Azerbaijan, to the occupied Palestine territories a few days ago to visit the Zionist weapons production facilities and military training centers and to talk with the Israeli military officials. Colonel General Zakir Hasanov, the first defense minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan who visited the occupied Palestine territories after his country’s independence, tried to dissuade Israel from selling arms to Armenia, and asked the Israeli regime to put the continuedsale ofweapons to Azerbaijan on its agenda.
The Israeli moves to send delegations to Armenia and Azerbaijan show that Israel’s arms deals in the South Caucasus region, which had previously been focused only on Azerbaijan, are changing in 2017, and that the Zionistregime seeks to expand its sphere of influence in the South Caucasus. In other words, Israel intends to secure its own military- security interests by establishing close ties with Armenia and providing military equipment to this country and increasing the arms deals in the South Caucasus region.
One of the factors behind the continued regional crises and disputes is the issue of the interests of arms exporters whotry to have their arms deals flourished, given the rise and continuation of crises. The simultaneous Israeli arms deals with Baku and Yerevan could lead to increased military conflicts between the two countries, civilian and non-civilian death and the destruction of cities and villages. On the other hand, the increased arms purchases of Azerbaijan and Armenia will improve the financial strength of Israel for its continued militarism against the oppressed people of Palestine- Baku and Yerevan will accompanythe Zionist regime on this path. Baku has long hoped to use the Jewish lobby to confront the Armenian lobby for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, but the fact is that, according to international Zionism, the fate of Armenian and Jewish peoples is similar, and the problems of Armenians and Jews are also the same. At the same time, Israel is not a strategic friend of the government and people of Armenia, since it is the first armsprovider to Azerbaijan. Under the continued Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict, the Israeli leaders are tryingto take the most out of the turbulent situation in the region by selling weapons to both sides.
Baku and Yerevan need to know that the Zionist regime is not reliable, and it only seeks to find new arms markets and strengthen its influence in the region. Using Israeli weapons cannot contribute to the peace and security of the region, and provide the interests of Azerbaijan and Armenia, and they will affect the relations of these countries with their regional friends, including the Islamic Republic of Iran.
© Jam-e-Jam Daily
Mohsen Pakaeen, Former Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the Republic of Azerbaijan, is the senior fellow at IRAS.
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