Saturday, November 24

New kind of diplomacy: no monuments, no relations!

Looks like priorities of the Azerbaijani government in building diplomatic relations are really shifting. According to this New York Times article Azerbaijani authorities are ready to mess their foreign policy based on a statue.

Perhaps not many of you know but part of the country's diplomatic relations building skills is based on investing heavily (talking millions here) in park renovations and presenting of monuments of the late President Haydar Aliyev as "presents" that accompany the new parks.

This might have worked in other counties where public reaction was always limited or non existent but not in Mexico. Many in Mexico were left puzzled seeing the statue of an ex-KGB general placed in a park next to some well known and historical figures as Gandhi and Abraham Lincoln.

What's surprising here is however how easy apparently it is for the local Azerbaijani government to "damage" it's foreign relations- if the statue goes in Mexico, so will the diplomatic relations between the two countries. Is it that simple? Do no international political relations and rules apply any longer? Our government will really close the embassy in Mexico if the statue is removed?

But the real burning question is then how will the Azerbaijani authorities explain this "sourness" once the statue is removed. I guess we'll just have to wait and see...

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