Armenpress: Armenia needs to diversify security relations: Nikol Pashinyan

 22:53, 25 October 2023

YEREVAN, OCTOBER 25, ARMENPRESS. Armenia should diversify its relations in the security sphere. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan stated this in an interview with The Wall Street Journal reporter Yaroslav Trofimov, noting that in the case of aggressive actions by Azerbaijan against Armenia, the Collective Security Treaty Organization and Russia did not implement the actions described in the CSTO Charter and the agreement signed between Armenia and Russia

“In your speech to the European Parliament, you mentioned that you are disappointed with the behavior of some of your allies. Could you be more specific, what do you think your formal allies in the CSTO allies, particularly Russia, should have done differently, and what are your expectations from your Western partners?” asked The Wall Street Journal reporter.

“We are not talking about this for the first time and we have talked about the fact that in May 2021 and September 2022, Azerbaijan carried out aggressive actions against Armenia and occupied territories. The Collective Security Treaty and the Charter of the Collective Security Treaty Organization clearly state the actions to be taken when aggression against a member state occurs. What was described did not happen and, of course, it is disappointing for both the Armenian government and the Armenian public.

Also, we have a bilateral agreement with Russia in the field of security, and the actions described in that agreement also did not take place, which also raised very serious questions among both the Government and the public.

As for the relations with other partners, I will be more honest if I say that these situations, in fact, led us to a decision that we need to diversify our relations in the security sector. And we're trying to do that now,’’ answered PM Pashinyan.

 To the question that actually right now Armenia still has that agreement with Russia and there are Russian military bases in Armenia and whether Russia's military presence in Armenia is an asset or a liability, Nikol Pashinyan answered: “You know, at least at this moment I have already said that, unfortunately, we have not seen the advantages in the sidelines of the cases I have described.”

“Does this mean that you are planning to call that Russia withdraws its military bases from Armenia?” asked the correspondent.

“We are not discussing such a question. We are now more focused on discussing other issues, we are trying to understand what is the cause of such a situation, and of course, I also think that this will be the agenda of working discussions between Armenia and Russia, Armenia and the Collective Security Treaty Organization.’’

“Quite senior officials in Russia, including former President Medvedev, have used really insulting words against you and called for a coup against you or removing you from office. How did you respond to all this, and in your opinion, what are the reasons for this campaign against you in Russia?” asked Trofimov.

“You know, if I'm not mistaken, I didn't directly respond to that and I'm not going to respond publicly in addition to what I have already said. But it is also obvious that those facts you mentioned at least raise questions, and the answers to those questions must be found, because such an approach violates many rules, starting from not interfering in each other's internal affairs and diplomatic correctness and, of course, it also creates problems at personal dimension, because such a wording, such a language and such a position are incomprehensible for people who have worked with each other for quite a long time,” noted PM Pashinyan.