The Embassy of Azerbaijan in Russia sent a note to the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The reason is that on October 20, the broadcast of the Big Game show on Channel One Russia questioned the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan.
The note published on the website of the Embassy of Azerbaijan in Russia also emphasized that the guests of the show “provoked and tried to revive the conflict left in the past and, by openly supporting separatism, sowed the seeds of enmity between the two nations”.
The embassy brought to the attention of the ministry that the use of biased statements and open political provocations on the state TV channel are contrary to the official position voiced by the President of Russia many times and expressing support for the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, as well as to the steps taken in the direction of ensuring long-term peace, stability and security in the region.
It is mentioned in the document that media representatives have a special responsibility to prevent provocations that can cause tension and make the situation even worse in the fragile peace conditions of the region.
The host of the talk show and one of the direct participants of it is Vyacheslav Nikonov, a member of the United Russia faction, the first deputy chairman of the Russian State Duma Committee on International Affairs. “Such behavior of representatives of the ruling party of Russia is contrary to the spirit of Azerbaijan-Russia strategic partnership and alliance interaction, as well as significantly harms bilateral relations,” the embassy noted.
Recalling the relevant provisions of the Declaration on alliance mutual activity dated February 22, 2022, the embassy said that it is envisaged to make joint efforts in the fight against separatism, reflecting a call to refrain from any actions that harm relations and activities aimed at the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of states. The Azerbaijani side demanded that Russia take immediate measures to stop the provocative actions of the mass media representatives of this country and prevent them from repeating in the future.
On October 23, Azerbaijan Television’s show Hafta called Russia an invader in its report on the invasion of the Ukrainian territory, and it was received as an unexpected move on social networks.
Political scientist Rauf Mirgadirov, who spoke to Meydan TV about the Russian-Azerbaijani relations, believes that Moscow’s influence on Baku is quite limited at the moment:
“This gives the Azerbaijani government the opportunity to maneuver. At least because Russian-Turkish relations are of quite serious importance to the Kremlin. Considering that no one wants to talk directly with Russia, it cannot be ruled out that Russia is using the territory of Turkey in this situation. In other words, Russia does not have the opportunity to directly pressure Azerbaijan in order to maintain relations with Turkey. This is not a matter of Ukraine, so that Turkey can gain some points by maintaining its neutrality, but also try to create a positive image for the Russian president. In such conditions, Azerbaijan has the opportunity to make certain demarches against Russia.”
However, Mirgadirov thinks that the root of the current situation is somewhat different. According to him, Russia requires its allies to show a clear position on the issue of Ukraine:
“Showing such a position for official Baku does not meet the interests of Azerbaijan in any way. Since the tension in the Russia-Ukraine war is currently increasing, threats against Azerbaijan are also increasing because Russia keeps Ukraine under fire through its fleet in the Caspian Sea.”