Development Of Contacts Between IRI And RA Conditioned By Moscow’s A


Noyan Tapan
May 21, 2009

YEREVAN, MAY 21, NOYAN TAPAN. The seminar organized by the Armenian
Center for National and International Studies on May 21 was dedicated
to discussion of Armenian-Iranian relations and their development
prospects. ACNIS Director Richard Giragosian, Yerevan State University
professor, Ambassador David Hovhannisian, and Center expert Manvel
Sargsian speaking at the seminar pointed to great unused potential
in development of relations between the two countries.

Issues of communication sphere, in particular, projects in the sphere
of transport and energy are of special importance in Armenian-Iranian
relations. In the opinion of R. Giragosian and D. Hovhannisian, the
Iran-Armenia pipeline is the confirmation of deepening of cooperation
between the two countries.

According to D. Hovhannisian, the construction project of
Iran-Armenia railway, which seems senseless today, indeed can have
much importance. In particular, the railway leading from Turkmenistan
and Kazakhstan to Iran can pass through Armenia, which no doubt will
raise the role of the latter in the region.

According to R. Giragosian, it is also alarming that today
development of contacts between IRI and RA, unfortunately, is
conditioned by Moscow’s attitude to them. "The bright evidence is
pressure exerted by Russia on Armenia, as a result of which the
diameter of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline made not 1200 mm, but 711,
which reduced to zero the possibility of contruction of a transit gas
pipeline. These actions of Russia are far from actions of a strategic
ally," R. Giragosian noted.

R. Giragosian and D. Hovhannisian characterized relations between
Russia and Armenia as relations of "a seignior and a vassal." It is
conditioned by the low level of RA authorities’ legitimacy, which
makes them vulnerable for external influence.