There was a serious tension in the contact line after the infamous incident in Fizuli. As a result, the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairmen urgently arranged the meeting of Azerbaijani and Armenian foreign ministers. Although this step is aimed at reducing tensions between the two sides, it is difficult to say that it succeeded.
A few days ago, the first interview of Azerbaijani Defense Minister, Colonel-General Zakir Hasanov, to the foreign media outlet shed light on many issues. Were the Defense Minister's remarks a warning to Armenia, and a message to his patrons?
Elman Mammadov, a member of the Azerbaijani parliament, told "Kaspi" that the Azerbaijani Defense Minister, in his interview with the foreign press, touched on the goals in a very accurate, well-arranged and measured way: "The defense minister has clearly stated that Azerbaijan has anti-missile systems and weapons that meet modern requirements that is capable of destroying "Isgender" missiles that Armenia relies on. Of course, this was a warning to Armenia and a message to the co-chairing state that gave them the Iskander missiles. It meant to convey that they should not have so much confidence in such weapons. Azerbaijan has taken measures against all the offensive weapons in Armenia today. Let me also note that our state has also completed the necessary work needed to destroy the Iskander missiles".
According to Mammadov, in his interview, Hasanov said that the Azerbaijani army was in full swing to protect the country's security and liberate the occupied lands:"The Azerbaijani army is working on its own to improve its combat capability every day. The recent military exercises have been carried out to adapt to the war situation. All these weapons are used in the drills, and the Azerbaijani army proves that we are not only able to get these weapons, but also have the capability to use these weapons at the right time".
The reserve colonel, military expert Shair Ramaldanov said that the defense minister's interview was a follow up to the views of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief Ilham Aliyev: "Zakir Hasanov gave his message as defense minister. Firstly, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces are increasingly becoming weaponized. The interview has been given to the Russian press and we know that this country is one of the co-chairs. It is well known to us that Russia is a patron to Armenia. I am confident that this interview of the defense minister was monitored by both the international community and co-chair countries. Zakir Hasanov said that as a defense minister, there was no other way left but to resovle the conflict through military means. President Ilham Aliyev has repeatedly stated that the establishment of the second Armenian state in the territory of Azerbaijan will not be tolerated. The highest status can be given to Nagorno-Karabakh within the borders of our state. As you can see, the Karabakh policy of the country is clear, it simply needs to be turned into reality. There are two ways to do this - either peacefully or militarily. The peace path has been going on for 23 years and eventually nothing has been achieved except the losses of both sides. In short, Armenians are brutally oppressing the Azerbaijanis on the territory of Azerbaijan. "
Ramaldanov noted that the Armenian leadership can not go to peace talks: "Because Armenians have patrons and do not let them make the right decision. In this case, Azerbaijan has no alternative but to go to war. The position of the Azerbaijani people in this issue coincides with the will of the country's leadership. In addition, the Azerbaijani Armed Forces are supplied with necessary weapons and equipment. The goal is that Azerbaijan should liberate its lands from occupation. Zakir Hasanov, as the military serviceman and the minister, brought all these issues to the attention of the Armenians in the form of a warning".