Azerbaijan’s economy has grown tremendously in recent years and the country doesn’t need the U.S. assistance anymore, said Matthew Bryza, the former deputy assistant of the US secretary of state for South Caucasus, former US ambassador to Azerbaijan and director of International Centre for Defense Studies in Tallinn.
Commenting on the US decision to reduce the financial assistance to Azerbaijan, Armenia and Turkey, Bryza said the assistance the US provided when USSR collapsed has not intended to last forever.
“It was intended to help the country to make transition from Soviet system to international system and Azerbaijan has made it, thus no need for that assistance anymore,” he told Trend.
During the press conference on April 14, US Ambassador to Armenia Richard Mills announced about certain reduction of programs provided by the US to Azerbaijan, Armenia and Turkey.
Bryza went on to add that the reduction of financial assistance to Azerbaijan and Armenia does not mean that Nagorno-Karabakh settlement is not a priority for the United States anymore.
The US assistance to Azerbaijan and Armenia have not focused on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, it focused on other things like developing market economy, training young people to be able to operate within the international system, he said.
“What we see in terms of reduction of assistance is other booming problems that have direct impact on US security as ISIS and Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan,” Bryza added.
There are huge human problems in the world, humanitarian problems that threaten the United States and US citizens and the US administration says the country needs to spend this money on resolving these problems, according to Bryza.
“There is a limited amount of money available and there are some very big problems that threaten US security and citizens of US in a serious way,” he said. “I would not interpret it that Azerbaijan, or Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is not a priority for the US anymore. I would say there are bigger problems toward US itself and limited amount of money.”
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