Armenian Lawmaker On Relations With Russia


ITAR-TASS News Agency, Russia
May 8, 2007 Tuesday

Relations between Yerevan and Moscow will be making progress if
the Republican Party is represented in government, a lawmaker said
on Tuesday.

"The strategic partnership between our countries retains its urgency
in many international and bilateral projects; we’ve made certain
moves not toward each other, but together," Republican Party member
Armen Ashotian said in an interview with Itar-Tass.

"Russia remains an important political and economic partner of
Armenia, taking into account the presence of the Russian military
base in the republic and our membership in the Collective Security
Treaty Organization /CSTO/, as a guarantee of national security,"
Ashotian noted.

"Another important issue is RussEa’s role in settling the Karabakh
conflict, and its assistance in mitigating the consequences of the
transport blockade of Armenia.

Ashotian called for "the understanding, by Russia’s ruling elite,
of the fact that Armenia has its own interests, that Yerevan should
be guided by its own interests in foreign policy, building it upon
combined interests of the geopolitical centers in the region."

For example, a peaceful solution of the Karabakh conflict is Armenia’s
foremost interests, which also packs Russian, U.S. and EU interests.

"The development of Armenian-Russian relations should not depend on
Armenia’s relations with other countries – Georgia, Iran and the USA,"
Ashotian said.

Ashotian, 32, a candidate in the May 12 parliamentary election,
is on the party list of the Republican Party of Armenia under the
proportionate election system.

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