There can be only one official language in Armenia

Vestnik Kavkaza

19 Jul in 14:54 Mamikon Babayan, exclusively for Vestnik Kavkaza

Last week, Russian media published a statement of Armenian National Assembly speaker Ara Babloyan on the issue of giving Russian language status of the second state language. He noted that this issue is not on the agenda of Armenian parliament. Earlier, at a meeting with Babloyan, State Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin suggested that Yerevan should make Russian language an official language, arguing that it would be great for Armenian citizens to get a job related to driving in Russia without Russian driver's licenses.

However, this initiative was not supported by Armenia's political establishment, which referred to the country's constitution, as was confirmed by vice speaker of Armenian parliament Edward Sharmazanov, as well as to the cultural and educational state of Russian language in Armenian schools.

Nevertheless, after a deeper examination of the issue, it can be assumed that Yerevan simply considered that the decision to review Russian language's status incomparable to Russian side's proposal. Allowing citizens of the republic to drive in Russia without Russian driver's licenses is not enough. Making Russian an official language will inevitably lead to significant changes in many spheres of the country's life.

This also concerns paperwork, which will be done in several languages. It will also affect educational system in Armenian universities, where teaching in Russian may become mandatory. Another problem concerns names of streets and buildings in Armenia, which will be quite expensive for the republic, considering well-known poor economic situation. It seems that these and many other factors have influenced the position of Armenian parliamentarians, considering pretty good relations between Armenia and Russia, both as neighbors and strategically partners. However, negotiations with Russian side about driver's licenses are likely to continue in other formats. 

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