CHAPTER 16 THE KARABAKH PROBLEM AS A RESULT OF THE PAN-TURKIC POLICY OF THE BAKU AUTHORITIES

Iosif Vissarionovich, the territory of the Autonomous region of Nagorny Karabakh, neighbouring Armenia, was attached to the Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic in 1923. The population of the region is preponderantly Armenian. 137 thousand people live in the region, of whom approximately 137 thousand are Armenian. The agricultural areas are exactly like the Armenian mountainous ones. The attachment of the region to Armenia would give an impetus to economical development and management.

The mass access of the population to the culture and policy of Armenia and the use of the native language would put the development of the region on firm bases.

The local cadres would have an opportunity of profession promotion in the higher educational institutions of Armenia. On the other hand the Armenian SSR in its turn could gain from the intellectual and managerial contribution of the Karabakh Armenians, whose abilities, naturally are not given preference by Azerbaijan. Considering all this factors and the will of the population of Nagorny Karabakh Autonomous Region, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Armenia and the Council of Commissars would like to ask the USSR Central Committee of the Communist Party and the Union government to discuss the question of attaching the Azerbaijan SSR Nagorny Karabakh Autonomous Region to the SSR of Armenia. If the question is solved positively, the Central Committee of the Armenian SSR and the Council of People’s Commissars will introduce the restoration project of the former centre of Karabakh – Shushi, which had been destroyed before the establishment of Soviet Power.

Secretary of Communist Party Central Committee of Armenia G. Harutiunov

November 11, 1945″ 19

Harutiunov made another approach to Moscow in 1949, but as the first one, it was fruitless too. In view of Turkish defeat in the Second World War as a USSR’s rival and Azerbaijan’s patron, the transfer of the region to Armenia was possible and Harutiunov knew of it very well. But probably he wasn’t aware that a Communist rule was established in Tabriz, whose aim was to unite the so-called “two Azerbaijans”. But in 1946 this government was overthrown and the pan-Turkic (Azerbaijan and Turkey) and Communist (Azerbaijan and Moscow) hopes dashed to the ground.

The historian B. Ulubabian, who had taken part in the trial of M. Bagirov in 1953, told that as a result of Baghirov’s interrogation by the Public Prosecutor R.A. Rudenko, it became clear that Baghirov had planned to attach the Daghestan Autonomous Region to Azerbaijan and besides, he, together with Stalin and Beria had decided to organize a new deportation of Armenians in the summer of 1953, so that the population in the Republic would be less than a million, which would deprive Armenia of its status of a republic and would enable the plotters to divide its territory between Georgia and Azerbaijan. Bagirov added that Stalin’s death prevented them from realizing the project. To Roman Rudenko’s question what united Stalin and Bagirov, the latter answered;

“I am the leader of Azerbaijan and as such interested in the growth of its might. As to Stalin, it’s favourable for him to have such an powerful and loyal ally in the Orient, on the threshold of Muslim world as the Republic of Azerbaijan”.21

It was evident that the hope of seizing the Iranian Northern territory of Azarbaijan proper was still alive.

In autumn 1947 the heads of the republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan Bagirov and Harutiunov met on the border of Kelbajar(Karvachar) and Vaik to conduct negotiations concerning the migration of Armenian Muslims to Azerbaijan. The same year, on December 3, Bagirov and Harutiunov signed an agreement which was sent to Stalin. This document was firstly published by the Baku historian J. Kuliev;

“Thinking over the recent economical developments in the republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan, we came to a conclusion to make the following suggestions: the construction of the Mingechaur hydro power-station demands extra manpower. Besides the productivity in the cotton fields is low due to the same reason. The increase of the population in those regions through the resettlement of 130 thousand Azerbaijanis of Armenia, can solve the above mentioned problem.

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