Brief: Azerbaijan-Israel gas projects may undermine IRGC “environmental terror”

By | Rachel Brooks

April 9, 2021 

“to the Suez Canal” by hans s is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.

Ships that pass through the Suez Canal, and the region of the Persian Gulf run the risk of being exploited for Iranian “environmental terrorism”. Israel and Azerbaijan’s relationship may strengthen in an effort for the oil industry between the two states to undermine this exploit of oil resources for environmental damages against the Jewish state.

Azerbaijan and Israel’s ties have strengthened in the wake of the 44-Day Karabakh war. Now, with mutual risks to civilians and issues of environmental terrorism, the historic bond may deepen further still.

Bonds to strengthen over mutual risk from Iran

The politicization of Israel’s relationship with Azerbaijan falls under the umbrella of potential threats to Israeli citizens from Iran as Israeli outbound tourism renews. The Times of Israel reported on March 29 that, as Israel’s outbound tourism renewed, the NSC of Israel confirmed attractions for Israeli tourism such as Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Turkey could open them up to attack by Iranian nations with ties to the IRGC.

Acts of Iranian-backed terrorism launched in Azerbaijan have been reported by Israel Hayom in March as tensions along the Azerbaijani southern border.

Israel Hayom reported on March 30 that an environmental disaster in Israel in which an oil tanker carrying 90k tons of crude oil from Iran to Syria had been caused intentionally by the IRGC. The Israeli Environmental Protection Minister Gila Gamliel had described the event as “environmental terrorism” Israel Hayom reported that Azerbaijan seeks to undermine the threat of intentional oil spills with its Southern Gas Corridor project. This, the Israeli news outlet stated, could serve as a means of strengthening the relationship between the two nations.

Further talks on Azerbaijan embassy in Israel

In a natural progression of the bond between the two nations, Azerbaijan expresses a desire to open an embassy in Israel. This was reported by Israel Hayom on April 9. 

In a recent virtual event marking the 29 years of Jerusalem-Baku ties, Azerbaijani official Farid Shafiyev, the chairman of Azerbaijan’s Center of Analysis of International Relations, addressed history’s tendency to demonize both Azerbaijanis and Jews. 

“Historians attack the image of the Israelis and the Azerbaijanis. This is antisemitism and anti-Azerbaijanism. Nevertheless, that is also what unites us,” said Shafiyev, describing the ties that string Azerbaijan and Israel together. 

Politicization of the relationship is an echo chamber in western press

Shafiyev likewise commented on the rhetoric that Azerbaijan and Israeli ties are established under the influence of political lobbies. This, he stated, is not the case.

“Jews have lived in Azerbaijan for 2,500 years. The historic ties between the peoples are deep,” said Shafiyev, as he was quoted by Israel Hayom.

The relationship between Israel and Azerbaijan continues to be discredited in the Armenian and western press. Asbarez accused Azerbaijan of betraying Israel at the UN. On March 30, Asbarez called the relationship between Israel and Azerbaijan “hypocrisy of the highest form.” Likewise, The Armenia Mirror-Spectator referred to Azerbaijan and Israel’s relationship along with Azerbaijan’s relationship to Turkey as “the toxic trio.”