TODAY.AZ / Politics

Kamil Salimov: "Explosion at BTC caused the greatest damage to Azerbaijan"

07 August 2008 [16:06] - TODAY.AZ
Day.Az interview with Kamil Salimov, doctor of law and expert in the sphere of combat with terror.
- How would you comment on the explosion at Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline?

- The threat of terror acts against BTC was taken into account while planning the construction of the pipeline. The participating countries took into account the real threats at all sections of the pipeline. The threats of terror acts from the Armenian side were taken into account at the Azerbaijani section of the pipeline, Abkhaz and South Ossetian at Georgian section and Kurdish at Turkish.

Another fact should be underlined. While planning the pipeline construction, Azerbaijan proposed a convention for defining the system of international security of BTC, envisioning its security in line with international law. Its essence was as follows: the pipeline is guarded by three states-Azerbaijan, Turkey and Georgia; the special services of the three countries are closely cooperating for guarding the pipeline.

The modern concept of war on terror envisions cooperation of the whole world society. There are 13 international conventions today, in line with which the states are bound to present information to avert terrorist acts, depending on the object of terrorist attack.

Hypothetically, let's imagine that special services of Belgium have information about the preparing attack on the BTC pipeline. In case BTC was an object of international defense, if exactly, if it was on the list of the said 13 conventions, Belgium will be bound to present information to the three countries, participating in the BTC pipeline immediately. But if BTC is not on the list, Belgium may present this information or it may not.

Thus, while laying the pipeline, Azerbaijan presented the draft convention on international defense of oil interstate pipeline to UN, including BTC as ecological damage from the explosions is quite significant. Unfortunately, at that time the proposal of the Azerbaijani side was not taken into account.

- The Kurdish terror organization PKK assumed responsibility for explosion at the BTC pipeline...

- The philosophy of the terrorist act lies in causing damage to the most critical points of the country, including civilians, strategic objects and so on, which may create serious concerns of the country and the world society. The most painful point for the whole region is the BTC pipeline. The due infrastructure including terminals, oil tankers and others, has been created for the purpose. The explosion suspended operation of the whole infrastructure.

- Which country suffered greatest losses from the explosion at BTC pipeline?

- Undoubtedly, the terrorist act against BTC caused a colossal damage to the entire region. As I have already said, it is necessary to search an alternative way of transportation. It is unclear how much time will be needed for pipeline restoration. We had to transport oil by the Baku-Novorossiysk pipeline, which are many millions of expenses. Terrorists have reached their goals. Colossal economic damage was caused to the region, not speaking of the ecological damage.

- Do you think the third powers have a hand in the explosion?

- As a rule, terrorist organizations cooperate with each others. But there is also a policy of state terrorism. Participation of the Armenian special services in the terrorist act is not ruled out. Yerevan is isolated from regional economic projects, it is in a state of war with Azerbaijan, it has territorial claims to Turkey, its relations with Georgia cooled due to the recent events in Javakheti. It is necessary to take into account the fact that Armenia has links with Kurdish separatists. But still it is difficult to state it without any proofs.

- Which measures should be taken to strengthen BTC security?

- It is impossible to ensure the security of the pipeline by a whole army, even if there were guards at each meter. The terrorist act of September 11 of 2001 demonstrated vulnerability of the defense systems of state objects, regulated by the man factor. The United States, having great opportunities of espionage and counterespionage, fell victims. I consider it necessary to adopt the 14th convention of the international security of interstate pipelines. The document should be approved by European structures. I think it will be approved by Europe, as BTC is important for it. And later the document could be presented to UN.


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