by Ashot Safaryan
The Crimea will hardly become a precedent for Karabakh because of different weight categories of Armenia and Russia, Russian political expert, Andrey Epifantsev, told Arminfo correspondent.
'Of course, the Crimea will become the temptation for the Karabakh conflict settlement. The most important is that in the conditions of the crisis of the world law system, when there are two equivalent but polar principles - the right of the people for self-determination and inviolability of borders, and in specific cases the countries adhere to that of them which more convenient to them, Russia could cross the line and cast gage to that part of the world community which in this case chooses the inviolability of borders", - Epifantsev said.
He also added that however Moscow managed to do that chiefly because it depends on these countries not so much cardinally, or this dependence is mutual, or because it is at least for several years that Russia has been conducting an independent policy and pretending at leadership as one of the world centers of force. As for Armenia, here the situation differs. Because of different reason, Armenia has been striving to be complementary to different force centers. This means that it is very much difficult for Armenia to make sharp steps, as it scares to damage relations with any of them. If Moscow goes forward, Yerevan shamefully stands apart and only hopes not to cause anger of its bigger partners.
'Certainly, we understand that the weight categories of Russia and Armenia are different. However, Armenia could level its less beneficial parts by closer cooperation with Russia within the frames of the Customs Union and Eurasian Union. But here as well, the policy of complementarity puts its certain limits. For this reason, we have to confess that the Crimea will hardly become a precedent for Karabakh. The unsettlement of the Karabakh conflict is a result of the complementary policy conducted by Yerevan", - he said.
When predicting possible scenarios in confrontation of Russia and the West after the referendum in the Crimea, the expert said there is not specific information how far the West is ready to go in its aspiration to "punish" Russia. According to the logic, the true sanctions are hardly possible, as they will also damage the western countries themselves. But as we know, in the crisis moments logic sometimes disappears. For this reason, nothing must be ruled out, he said.
As for the Customs Union, he said that after the referendum in the Crimea and the position taken by Russia, the elites of some countries of the post-Soviet area will keep their ears open, as their countries have got similar pain points as Ukraine had: absence of accord of people, argument borders after the USSR split, different ideas for the future, huge corruption, ruined state machinery, etc. "However, all this is not directly linked with integration processes developed by Russia. For many years Ukraine either did not take part in these projects or its participation was too weak. All this resulted in Ukraine's split. I am absolutely confident that if the post-Soviet countries see an economic interest in the Russian integration projects, if they feel Russia as one of the world leaders, the integration at the post-Soviet area will go on developing irrespective of various conflicts", - Epifantsev concluded.