The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), being part of the armed forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran, has been increasingly used for all sorts of "special operations" outside of Iran. As we know, the IRGC has been and is currently actively involved in the civil wars in Iraq, Yemen and Syria, in the latter case in close cooperation with the Russian troops.
The IRGC in Tehran is going to shift its sphere of action to another conflict zone, namely the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, as well as to the Azerbaijani Karabakh, in the zone of responsibility of Russian peacekeepers.
In principle, Armenian nationalists have been planning to incite a "big war" between Azerbaijan and Armenia for a long time. Provocations were organised to either force Russia to fight for Armenia again or to bring so-called "international peacekeepers", mostly from France, into the region instead of Russian ones (who, they claimed, "cannot prevent the 'Armenian genocide'"). Last year the Armenian side deliberately sought to exacerbate the situation on the border, while at the same time demanding that Russia intervene on Armenia's side "as a CSTO ally".
Russia, then bogged down in the war in Ukraine, did not yield to these provocations, but Iran reacted to the aggravation, which formally did not concern it at all (Tehran has no allied obligations towards Yerevan), and moved additional IRGC units to the northern border. And it was the statement of the Armenian deputy foreign minister accusing Azerbaijan of its intention to take control of the Iranian-Armenian border in September 2022 that caused Iran to carry out military exercises on the border with Azerbaijan.
Consequently, Armenian nationalists began to hate Russia, which had allegedly 'surrendered' the Armenians, even more and began to hope even more for Iran. The demands to remove Russian peacekeepers from Karabakh and the Russian military base from Armenia became even louder on the part of Armenian nationalists. Yerevan wants to see new French peacekeepers. But they seem to understand perfectly well that France will not fight for Armenian interests. That is, Armenia wants Iran, represented by the IRGC, to fight for its interests instead of Russia.
This might seem strange at first sight, because there is no more Islamophobic regime than the authorities in Yerevan. But it seems that the authorities in Tehran have not been embarrassed by this for a long time. Otherwise, they would not be so calm about the expulsion of over 1 million Muslims from their homeland of Karabakh, and about the desecration and destruction of mosques in Armenia and in Armenia's occupied territories. Thus, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) could well turn into the 'Islamophobic Guard Corps' or the 'Artsakh Separatist Guard Corps'.
Meanwhile, having taken the role of "defender" instead of Russia of the allegedly "genocidal" Armenians of "Artsakh", the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran may actually be hoping for mitigation of the Western sanctions through its lawyers in the person of the Armenian lobby in the US and France. That is, instead of the "nuclear deal" which, apparently, with the help of the same Armenia, Iran violated by receiving enriched radioactive materials and technologies through the "Armenian channel", there will be an "Armenian deal". The IRGC becomes the "protector of Armenians from genocide" and, as such, the regime in Tehran will be more tolerated by the same US.
However, Turkey's principled position on defending Azerbaijan's territorial integrity hindered the implementation of such plans. But the terrible earthquake that occurred in Turkey, as its detractors hope, provides a kind of "window of opportunity" for organizing a provocation with the help of the IRGC in order to replace the "defenders of Armenians" in the region.
A number of sources have reported that Armenia may be planning another military provocation against Azerbaijan, in the preparation and implementation of which a subversive group of 30 servicemen of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) may take part. Currently, a specially trained IRGC subversive group, composed mainly of ethnic Azerbaijanis, is located in the immediate vicinity of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, in the territory of the Syunik region, where it conducts preparatory work together with the personnel of the intelligence department of the Armenian Defense Ministry and the National Security Service.
The head of the task force is an IRGC general who served in Syria for a long time, where he led the development and implementation of local combat operations and subversive and terrorist plans.
A classic "warmongering" is planned by provoking clashes between the armed forces of Armenia and Azerbaijan. The subversive group plans to organise two successive attacks in the direction of the Lachin and Gubadli districts of Azerbaijan. The first attack on one of the posts of the Azerbaijani army will be carried out by a group of soldiers in Armenian army uniform, tasked with "destroying the enemy's manpower".
A second group, dressed as members of the Azerbaijanian army, will attack one of the Armenian posts and kill all the soldiers there. In doing so, video footage will be made of scenes of the killing of Armenian soldiers as well as speech in the Azerbaijanian language. In response to these provocations on the territory of Zangezur (at present the Syunik region of the Republic of Armenia) additional IRGC units may be involved and the posts and positions of the Azerbaijanian army may be attacked, during which Iranian kamikaze drones will probably be used.
The main purpose of the planned sabotage is to collect evidence for the European Union mission about another "act of aggression" of Azerbaijan and "atrocities" of the Azerbaijani army, as well as to organize another propaganda campaign against Baku in the international community. In addition, the planned provocation on the border should create a legal basis for the introduction of Iranian armed forces into Armenian territory. There is also information that 30 Iranians arrived to Karabakh via the Lachin road in the middle of last year and are still there, and they were apparently linked to the IRGC as well.
In light of the recent terrorist attack on the Azerbaijanian embassy in Tehran and the general deterioration of Iranian-Azerbaijanian relations, information about the IRGC's intention to carry out a provocation in the interests of Armenian revanchists cannot but cause concern.