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Baku sought Iran missiles to counter Armenia's Iskander: EurasiaNet

Baku sought Iran missiles to counter Armenia's Iskander: EurasiaNet

PanARMENIAN.Net - For Azerbaijan, the most attractive Iran military product would be ballistic missiles, which Baku has sought since September 2016, when it emerged that Armenia had acquired advanced Russian Iskander-M missiles, Eurasianet.org said in an article about military cooperation between Baku and Tehran.

Shortly following last year's the April War with Armenia over Nagorno Karabakh, retired Lieutenant General Yashar Aydemirov told local media that Azerbaijan used Iranian weapons during that conflict. But the weapons he identified, including howitzers and multiple launch rocket systems, are of Russian origin, produced in Iran and offered for export by Iran's Armament Industries Group (AIG) – which is on the Western sanctions list. Aydemirov's statement was received skeptically, given that Azerbaijan could easily buy those weapons from Russia without breaking the sanctions, which it has been loath to do.

Azerbaijan unleashed a large-scale military offensive against Karabakh on April 2, 2016 which left hundreds killed on both sides. Top Armenian and Azerbaijani officials reached an agreement on the cessation of hostilities on April 5 in Moscow.

"In any case, these weapons are relatively outdated, and do not provide any significant advantage for Azerbaijan’s military arsenal. That's especially true compared to the contributions Israeli weaponry, particularly drones, as well as Turkish howitzers and multiple launch rocket systems have made to Azerbaijan's armed forces," EurasiaNet says.

"For Azerbaijan, the most attractive Iran military product would be ballistic missiles, which Baku has sought since September 2016, when it emerged that Armenia had acquired advanced Russian Iskander-M missiles. “It is not yet clear how much Tehran is ready to cooperate with Azerbaijan in this field [ballistic missile technology. When it comes to the rest of the Iranian military industry, Azerbaijan is barely interested,” wrote the government-linked haqqin.az news site.

"For Iran, meanwhile, selling weapons to Azerbaijan carries a significant security risk, given the possibility that Azerbaijan could share the technology with Israel. In addition, Iran is not inclined to favor either Azerbaijan and Armenia and thus far it has not sold any conventional weapons to either state."

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