Armenia Indifferent To U.S. Troop Presence In Azerbaijan

Agence France Presse
Aug 27 2004

Armenia Indifferent To U.S. Troop Presence In Azerbaijan

BAGRAMIAN MILITARY BASE, Armenia, Aug 27 (AFP) – Armenia does not
oppose the presence of US troops in Azerbaijan, Armenia’s Defense
Minister Serge Sarkissian said Friday.

“The deployment of American troops in Azerbaijan is an affair between
the United States and Azerbaijan,” the minister told journalists at
the close of joint Russo-Armenian military operations.

Sarkissian also dismissed protests from Azerbaijan concerning the
presence of a Russian military base on Armenian soil as “just words”.

Some 3,000 troops took part in the joint, four-day military
maneuvers, which included fighter jets and helicopters.

The defense minister also said that Armenia was preparing to host
NATO exercises in 2006.

Azerbaijan and Armenia fought a four-year war between 1990-1994 over
disputed Nagorno-Karabakh, an enclave in Azerbaijan with a majority
Armenian population.

A ceasefire was agreed in 1994, leaving Armenian forces in de facto
control of the enclave and surrounding Azeri regions. Azerbaijan has
said it is determined to force Armenian troops out of the territory.