The recent rapprochement between Iran and Azerbaijan appears to be temporary.
This is especially true with the sources of tension between the two countries assuming a deep nature. Conflicts can arise between these two states soon.
It is true that the tensions that engulfed the two countries in the fall of 2021 have calmed down. Nonetheless, the differences that formed the basis of tension between them are still unresolved. This indicates that their rapprochement may be short-lived.
The recapture by Azerbaijani forces of a large part of Nagorno-Karabakh and adjacent areas of Armenia gave Azerbaijan full control over its former border with Iran. This was achieved thanks to Turkish military support. The Moscow-brokered ceasefire gave Baku legitimacy over its new gains at the expanse of Iran’s influence.
The war between Azerbaijan and Armenia highlighted Tehran’s true size and its weak influence.
During the war, artillery shells fell on Iranian territory. The two warring sides ignored Tehran’s calls for a ceasefire. They also overlooked its mediation between.
While Azerbaijan and Turkey were defeating Armenia, Iran’s strategic regional partner, Tehran announced support for Baku in liberating its territory, a move intended to appease Azeri nationalism inside Iran.
Tehran supports extremist Shiite groups inside Azerbaijan in order to recruit Azeri fighters for the war in Syria, within a military formation called Husayniyun, which consists of Azeris fleeing their government.
Tehran resents Ankara’s growing influence in Azerbaijan and burgeoning political and defense relations between the two countries, which are often described as one nation, due to their shared culture and history.
This rapprochement was translated into an increase in military cooperation between Turkey and Azerbaijan and a rapprochement in a number of files. This disturbed Tehran, prompting the Iranian Revolutionary Guard to launch an unprecedented military maneuver on Iran’s borders with Azerbaijan, on October 1, 2021.
Turkey reacted by carrying out a similar maneuver to support Azerbaijan. Things calmed, however, down after that. Nonetheless, terrorist cells supported by Tehran in Azerbaijan are still among the most prominent threats to national security.