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The role of Russia in protecting the interests of Armenia and Artsakh

10:26, Tuesday, 20 December, 2022
The role of Russia in protecting the interests of Armenia and Artsakh

On December 9, on the sidelines of the meeting of the Ministers of Defense of the SCO and CIS member countries in Moscow, talks were held between the heads of the military departments of Armenia and Russia. A plan of cooperation between the ministries of defense of the two countries for 2023 was approved. Russia attaches particular importance to assisting in increasing the potential of the Armenian Armed Forces.

However, there are ambiguous processes in the Armenian-Russian relations. Despite the strategic alliance, there are mutual claims from Yerevan and Moscow at the level of officials, as well as experts and analysts. Armenian officials articulates the thesis that Russia clearly does not take into account the interests of the republic and, moreover, in certain cases, Moscow is on the bit of the Turkish-Azerbaijani alliance.

Expectations from Russia as a strategic ally in post-Soviet Armenia have always been and still are overstated, since Yerevan is confident that in the event of conflicts and direct aggression against Armenia, Moscow will certainly protect its interests. The majority of the Armenian political class and society had similar confidence or at least hope regarding the security of Artsakh. Although, from a formal point of view, this republic is not included in the scope of Moscow's duties to protect Armenia.

As a result of the Ukrainian conflict, Russia today has certain problems in using effective leverage to influence the process of concluding a peace treaty between Armenia and Azerbaijan. At the same time, the United States has clearly become more active in the region in recent months and is claiming priority mediation in the Yerevan-Baku ne***iations. Competition between geopolitical poles in the region is intensifying. This state of affairs delays the medium-term or final resolution of the problems between Yerevan and Baku.

Washington's activity in the region is due to the desire not only to open a second front against Russia, but also to withdraw the peacekeeping contingent. To maintain power, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and his team are willing to play their part in making this happen. Just when official Yerevan, apparently, has already come to terms with the fact that Artsakh is not part of Armenia and has actually become a kind of burden for it. Pashinyan is trying to get certain guarantees from Washington related to certain rights for the security of the population of Artsakh, but nothing more. In 2023, the geopolitical storm will gain new momentum. The United States can feed with promises as much as they like, but, without having military presence in the region they will not play a significant role in resolving the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. Large dollar grants are not comparable to the scale of the strategic alliance between Armenia and Russia.

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