Armenian Turkologist: Turkey will try to beef up its influence in the region

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YEREVAN, June 14. /ARКА/. In the next 12-18 months Turkey will try to beef up its influence in the region, a prominent Armenian expert in Turkic affairs Ruben Safrastyan said on Monday when speaking at a discussion organized by the Lazarev Club, a panel of Armenian and Russian political analysts, in Yerevan.

According to Safrastyan, Ankara switched to this policy several years ago in order to achieve a dominant position across the region, and the main provision of Turkey’s doctrine is the use of the armed forces.

He said in 2016, Turkey began to beef up the military component of this axis, which involves also Azerbaijan, and in 2020 it began supplying modern weaponry to Azerbaijan to help it prepare for attacking Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh).

“Turkey is working now to reinforce the small foothold it has managed to get as a result of the war in Artsakh – together with Russia to create a joint monitoring center. Although they had higher appetites and sought the deployment of a peacekeeping contingent so that Turkish officers d be able to set foot on the land of Artsakh, Russia blocked all these persistent attempts, ”Safrastyan said.

Nevertheless, according to the Turkologist, Turkey continues its aggressive policy in the region, promoting pan-Turkic plans.

Safrastyan said a very important frontier for Turkey’s policy in the region, will be the year 2023, when the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic will be celebrated as Erdogan is set to announce the creation of New Turkey (Yeni Turkiye) by that time.

“I suppose that within the next 1-1.5 years Turkey will try to reach new heights in the region and increase its influence. According to their plans, Armenia should cease to exist, so I think that in the coming years we will witness the further manifestation of Turkey’s aggressive policy in the region,” Safrastyan said.

Speaking about what Armenia can oppose to this plan, the Turkologist singled out two categorical imperatives.

“The first is the restoration of the subjectivity of the Armenian state, the restoration of its armed forces and improving the controllability of the state, and the second is the strengthening and deepening of military-political cooperation with Russia. I think that we need to gradually create a model of a “smart state”: only in this case Armenia will be able to resist Turkey’s plans in our region, together with Russia,” Safrastyan said. –0–

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