TBILISI: Russian Minister Urges Armenia to Trade with Russia via Ira

Russian Minister Urges Armenia to Trade with Russia via Iran

Civil Georgia, Georgia
Oct 15 2004

Russian Minister of Transport and Communication Igor Levitin
advised the Armenian government to trade with Russia via the
Astrakhan-Enzeli (Iran) sea route. Levitin was responding to the
dissatisfaction expressed by the Armenian government over the closure
of the Larsi checkpoint on Russo-Georgian border, which hampers trade
between Russia and Armenia.

According to the Russian Minister it will take “30-40 days to finish
special operations at the Russian-Georgian Verkhniy Lars check post.”
According to Armenia’s Mediamax news agency Igor Levitin said that
“these operations are aimed at creating conditions which will make
penetration by persons and cars engaged in terrorist activity into
the territory of the Russian Federation impossible.”

As an alternative, Levitin suggested the opening of the railway
communication through Abkhazia. He said Armenia and Russia are ready
for this, while the Georgian position is unjustifiably “politicized.”
“If such a readiness [to open railway communication] is expressed by
the Georgian President as well, the issue will be solved sooner,”
Levitin said.