Brief: Russian Troops Deploy to Nagorno-Karabakh

Tuesday’s cease-fire deal is a strategic victory for the Kremlin.

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Background: Since September, Armenia and Azerbaijan have been engaged in the latest round of fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh. Russia, Turkey and Iran all have interests in the strategically important region located in the South Caucasus. Russia, which sees it as part of its critical buffer zone, has been balancing between the two sides, while Turkey is a key supporter of Azerbaijan. What Happened: After Russia, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed another cease-fire deal on Tuesday, the Kremlin began deploying peacekeepers to Nagorno-Karabakh as part of the peace agreement. In total, Russia will send 1,960 troops with small arms, 90 armored personnel carriers and 380 units of equipment to the region. The peacekeepers will be stationed there for at least five years with the possibility of extension. Russia’s Defense Ministry plans to set up 16 observation posts along the contact line and the Lachin corridor. The deployed troops have undergone peacekeeping training, and most previously served in Syria. Military police units will also be deployed. Although the Kremlin will have some communication with Turkey through a monitoring center reportedly located in Azerbaijan, it plans to carry out the peacekeeping mission on its own. The Bottom Line: By including a Russian peacekeeping contingent as […]

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