On March 12, the Atlantic Council held an off-the-record strategy session for newly-arrived ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the United States, Mr. Elin Suleymanov. A small group of high-level experts participated in the discussion, which included presentations by Greg Saunders, Director of International Affairs at BP; Svante Cornell, Research Director at the Central Asia and Caucasus Institute at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies; Bruce Jackson, President of the Project on Transitional Democracies; and Roger Kangas, Academic Dean and Professor at the National Defense University’s Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies. The event was chaired by Ross Wilson, a former US ambassador to Azerbaijan and currently director of the Council’s Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center.
The session focused on key issues for Azerbaijan and in its relationship with the United States, including energy, the country’s ongoing conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh, prospects for Azerbaijan’s deeper integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions, and regional security concerns. This was an opportunity to review key issues and identify possible strategies for both Baku and Washington to consider in the bilateral, regional and broader contexts.