Armenia is not Russia’s ally in Ukraine war, says PM Pashinyan

June 2 2023

TBILISI, June 2 (Reuters) – Armenia is not a Russian ally in the Ukraine war and is worried about the impact of that crisis on its relations with other countries, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said, drawing a cautious response in Moscow.

The tiny ex-Soviet nation in the southern Caucasus region has close security and economic ties to Russia, which have been further strengthened by its decades-long dispute with neighbouring Azerbaijan over the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Armenia is a member of the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) military alliance, while Azerbaijan is not.

"We are not Russia's ally in the war with Ukraine. And our feeling from that war, from that conflict, is anxiety because it directly affects all our relationships," Pashinyan told CNN Prima News in an interview, adding that Armenia felt caught between the two sides.

"In the West they notice that we are Russia's ally … in Russia they see that we are not their ally in the Ukraine war, and it turns out that we are not anyone's ally in this situation, which means that we are vulnerable," he said.

Asked about Pashinyan's remarks on Friday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responded with caution, saying Moscow had taken note of what he called "an important statement".

"We know that there are certain nuances in Armenia's approach to the conflict over Ukraine. We take them into account, we know them, but at the same time we continue to develop our allied relations with Armenia," Peskov said.

Former Kremlin adviser Sergei Markov, commenting on Peskov's statement, said on his Telegram channel that Moscow was "hinting that it sees that Pashinyan is leading Armenia away from friendship with Russia into the arms of Russia's enemies".

Armenia and Azerbaijan have resumed talks aimed at clinching a peace accord to resolve their dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh, which is recognised as part of Azerbaijan but is populated mainly by ethnic Armenians.

Azerbaijan recaptured in 2020 chunks of territory lost in a conflict as Soviet rule collapsed in the early 1990s.

Reporting by Felix Light in Tbilisi; Writing by Gareth Jones; Editing by Alison Williams

Azerbaijan falsely accuses Armenia of opening fire

 14:39, 1 June 2023

YEREVAN, JUNE 1, ARMENPRESS. The Ministry of Defense of Armenia has denied Azerbaijan’s accusation of opening fire in the north-eastern part of the border.

“The Azerbaijani Ministry of Defense has spread a usual disinformation. The units of the Armed Forces of Armenia have not opened fire at the Azerbaijani positions deployed in the north-eastern section of the border line,” the defense ministry said.

Asbarez: EU Leader Again Refers to Artsakh Citizens as ‘Armenians Living in Former NKAO’

President of the European Council Charles Michel

Underscores that Baku-Stepanakert Dialogue is ‘Crucial’

The President of the European Council Charles Michel, for the second time this month, referred to residents and citizens of Artsakh as “Armenians living in the former Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast,” a term used to describe Karabakh before its citizens voted for independence in 1991.

Michel made the reference on Tuesday in a social media post, in which he said that dialogue between Baku and Stepanakert is now “crucial.”

“Dialogue between Baku and Armenians living in former NKAO on their rights and security is now crucial. Important to refrain from maximalist positions and aim for dialogue. After more than 30 years of conflict, wounds take time to heal. Courageous decisions are needed,” Michel said in his post.

The EU leader’s statement comes days before he is expected to host Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan for more talks in Moldova’s capital Chisinau on Thursday.

Earlier this month, Michel hosted the two leaders in Brussels where they agreed to recognize each other’s territorial integrity, with Pashinyan pledging Yerevan’s commitment to allow Artsakh to be controlled by Azerbaijan.

“Essential to reconfirm respect for each other’s sovereignty & territorial integrity, & to advance on border delimitation, also to reduce risks in border areas,” Michel added on Tuesday.

Pashinyan and Aliyev’s talks with Michel on Thursday will also be attended by President Emmanuel Macron of France and the German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

The November 9 document only mentions one corridor, and that is the Lachin corridor. Pashinyan to Aliyev




YEREVAN, MAY 25, ARMENPRESS.  The trilateral declaration of November 9 mentions only one corridor, and that is the Lachin corridor, ARMENPRESS reports, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said during the extended-format session of the EAEU Supreme Council, referring to the so-called "Zangezur Corridor" _expression_ of the President of Azerbaijan.

"In his speech, the president of Azerbaijan used an _expression_ that in recent years serves as a title for presenting a territorial claim against Armenia. It is used within the framework of the implementation of point 9 of the trilateral declaration of November 9. I want to emphasize that the statement mentions only one corridor, and it is the Lachin corridor, which was supposed to be under the control of Russian peacekeepers, but, unfortunately, is illegally blocked by Azerbaijan," said Pashinyan.

The Prime Minister of Armenia assured that the Armenian side is ready to unblock all economic and transport links in the region. He noted that Armenia is ready for the opening of regional communication within the framework of the sovereignty and jurisdiction of the countries through the territory of which they pass.

The President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin also noted that conditions are being created for the recognition of the borders according to the agreements reached back in 1991, these conditions give hope to believe that it will be possible to reach an appropriate agreement between Armenia and Azerbaijan, including regarding transport communications.

"I think we can discuss all that at the tripartite meeting today," said Putin.

The Russian President expressed hope that it will be possible to agree on what is clearly in the interests of both Armenia and Azerbaijan and the economic development of the entire region. He expressed hope that it will be discussed in detail at the tripartite meeting.

The president of Azerbaijan, in his turn, assured that they have no territorial claims against Armenia. Referring to the term "corridor" used by him, Aliyev said: "The name corridor does not in any way mean encroachment on anyone's territory. It's an international term."

Aliyev added that "people who are familiar with international terminology would not give it such importance as the Prime Minister of Armenia does."

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan also responded. "All those who are familiar with the trilateral declaration of November 9, know that there is only one instance of the use of the word corridor in that statement. In that context, the word has a special meaning, and it is about the Lachin Corridor, which I repeat, according to the trilateral declaration, should be under the control of the Russian Federation and ensure the connection between Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia”.

Armenpress: Brussels confirms upcoming Armenia-Azerbaijan talks



 00:03, 9 May 2023

YEREVAN, MAY 9, ARMENPRESS. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan will have a trilateral meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and the President of the European Council Charles Michel on 14 May in Brussels, the European Council announced Monday.

The European Council said in a press release that Charles Michel ‘has continued to be in close contact with the leaders of Armenia and Azerbaijan to advance the EU’s efforts to promote stability in the South Caucasus and normalisation between the two countries’.

Pashinyan, Aliyev and Michel ‘have agreed to convene again on 14 May 2023 in a Brussels trilateral meeting’.

The leaders will also hold a meeting together with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on 1 June.

‘Their discussions will also be flanked by a meeting together with President Emmanuel Macron of France and Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, in the margins of the upcoming European Political Community summit in Chisinău on 1 June 2023. The leaders have also agreed to continue to meet trilaterally in Brussels as frequently as necessary to address ongoing developments on the ground and standing agenda items of the Brussels meetings. President Michel equally expressed his intention to invite the leaders of Armenia, Azerbaijan, France and Germany to meet a second time in the margins of the next EPC summit in Granada in October 2023,’ the European Council added.

News on the upcoming Armenia-Azerbaijan talks in Brussels was first by the Financial Times earlier on Monday.

Hamazkayin W.R.L.G. presents Armenian Woman and Mother 5/11/23

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Hamazkayin Western Region Literary Group presents Armenian Woman and Mother panel discussion and guest speaker Nora Chitilian and Rev. Vatche Ekmkjian on Thursday, May 11, 2023, at 8pm (PST), 11pm (EST), (Armenia, Friday 7am) FREE on Zoom. Contact Vania for information (818)216-9935 or email us at [email protected]

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Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day: A Never-Ending Story

APRIL 22, 2023

April 24, 1915: The first day of the Armenian Genocide. 1.5 million Armenians were murdered. The Armenian stories of dignity preservation and strength are never-ending, as they have been survivors of genocide and persecution since the beginning of their existence. 

According to, The Ottoman Turkish government officials began to round up and slaughter several hundred Armenian intellectuals. As the new Muslim government, known as the Young Turks, rose to power in 1908, the tolerance for ethnic Christian minorities like Armenians, Greeks and Assyrians progressively decreased. 

The mission then became to “Turkify” the region and Armenians continued to pose obstacles and threats to the empire of deceit. In 1914, the Ottoman Empire had entered WWI on the side of Germany and the Austro Hungarian Empire. While the world was distracted by the war, Ottoman religious authorities had declared a holy war against all Christians, except those with alliances. 

Slowly, the Ottoman officials began to raid Armenian households to forcibly remove them from their homes. They were then sent on death marches to the Mesopotamian desert without food or water. The marchers were stripped naked, forced to walk under the scorching sun, raped, and tortured until they died. Still, those who somehow survived the starvation and brutality were shot and killed. 

Turkish officers and members of Ottoman killing squads oftentimes referred to these acts of persecution as “the liquidation of Christian elements.” The littering of Armenian corpses throughout Anatolia continued with the drowning of Armenians in rivers, throwing them off cliffs, crucifying them and burning them alive. Records show that children under five years old were taken from their families, converted to Islam and given new identities as Turks. 

Of the two million Armenians in the Ottoman Empire at the time, 380,000 were able to climb their way out of ethnic annihilation and survive. The fight for survival continued as the last ones standing were divided and dispersed throughout the Middle East and Europe, initiating the growth of the Armenian diaspora. The only appropriate term to describe these systematic, mass murders the Armenian people is genocide, coined by Polish-Jewish lawyer Raphael Lemkin in 1944, which translates to the killing of a race or tribe. 

However, the perpetrators of these crimes against humanity, the Ottoman and current Turkish government have failed to tell the truth. Turkey has attempted to erase history with the concealing of files and the silencing of outside journalists to this day. 

Still, scholars are fighting against such suppression of genocides. Marist College hosted a Armenian Genocide Remembrance and Heritage Event on April 12, 2023. It was organized by Iris Ruiz-Grech from the Center for Multicultural Affairs, Professors Steven Garabedian and Dr. Michael O’Sullivan to commemorate the forgotten Armenian lives lost. They explored the tactics used to spread Armenophobia throughout the empire, and how Turkish denialism has been a key factor in the lack of awareness of the Armenian struggle for survival. 

O’Sullivan notes the Armenian genocide of 1915 as “a very extreme case of denialism—a refusal to talk about the past.” 

“The lesson that many Armenians learn is that they have to take justice into their own hands,” O’Sullivan said. “I want to emphasize that the Armenian stories of resilience are never-ending.”

In 2020, Azerbaijan, a neighboring Turkic nation launched a full-scale military aggression, targeting a region known as Nagorno-Karabakh, 95% populated by ethnic Armenians. Azerbaijan closed their borders and cut social media access to alter the narrative to its people. 

Thousands of native Armenians have been and currently are being killed. However, American media continues to describe the war as a “conflict.” This is not a conflict—this is a fight for survival that continues to be ignored. The gradual conquering of the lands of native people is a recurring story. We see this happening in Ukraine and many other places around the world today. Yet, the media around the world continually chooses to ignore the struggles of the Armenians because it is not profitable. 

Garabedian concluded his presentation with a quote from William Saroyan that embodies the Armenian resilience and culture that goes unnoticed: “Go ahead—destroy Armenia. See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing, and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a new Armenia.” 

‘Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict has never been considered an internal affair of Azerbaijan’, Artsakh FM




YEREVAN, APRIL 20, ARMENPRESS. Foreign Minister of Artsakh Sergey Ghazaryan has said that Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) considers President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev’s ultimatum statements and threats to unleash a new war to be absolutely unacceptable.

In an interview with ARTSAKHPRESS, FM Ghazaryan said that the people and authorities of Artsakh remain committed to the path of freedom and independence they have chosen, and no threats or difficulties created by Azerbaijan can make them turn off this path.

 Below is the interview published by ARTSAKHPRESS. 

How would you comment on the statement made by the President of Azerbaijan on 18 April that the Armenians living in Karabakh should either accept Azerbaijani citizenship or look for another place of residence?

 This is not the first time that the President of Azerbaijan has made statements that reveal the true intentions of Azerbaijan to ethnically cleanse Artsakh and expel its indigenous population from their historical homeland. The blockade imposed on Artsakh by the authoritarian leadership of Azerbaijan for more than four months is just one of the tools for the implementation of those criminal plans. Through coercion, the threat and use of force, Azerbaijan is essentially trying to force the people of Artsakh to accept the illegal demands of Azerbaijan, which contradict, inter alia, the peremptory norms of general international law.
 The fact that the leadership of Azerbaijani is no longer hiding their criminal intentions demonstrates the insufficiency of the international response and engagement in efforts to end the ongoing blockade of Artsakh and prevent the genocidal intentions of Azerbaijan. In fact, the Azerbaijani authorities, acting in an environment of absolute impunity and permissiveness, are increasingly expanding the scale and geography of their crimes committed against the people of Artsakh and Armenia.

 In this regard, I would like to emphasise that States, both individually and collectively, have an obligation to take effective and decisive measures to prevent the most serious crimes, primarily genocide and crimes against humanity, including ethnic cleansing and forced displacement. At the same time, the direct responsibility for preventing such crimes rests with the UN Security Council, a body that not only has the appropriate mandate, but also the necessary tools to stop the criminal intentions of Azerbaijan against Artsakh and its people.

 In this context, it is regrettable that despite the commitment to prevent such serious crimes, representatives of some international organisations and states make political efforts that indirectly promote Azerbaijan's illegitimate position and encourage their genocidal policy. We believe that such an approach by international actors, particularly those involved in the settlement of the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict and normalisation of Armenia-Azerbaijan relations, is not only unacceptable and counterproductive, but also fraught with unpredictable consequences for the entire region.    

How would you comment on the statement of the Azerbaijani President that Karabakh is an internal affair of Azerbaijan?

 The Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict has never been considered as an internal affair of Azerbaijan, neither during the existence of the Soviet Union, nor in the subsequent period of the formation of independent states on the territory of the former Soviet Union. This is evidenced by the fact that after Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh), Armenia and Azerbaijan gained independence, the international community created a special mechanism for the settlement of the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict – the Minsk Process. The decision to create an international format to determine the final political status of Artsakh indicated that the community of States did not recognise Artsakh as part of independent Azerbaijan. In turn, Azerbaijan's consent to be involved in the Minsk Process was also a recognition of the fact that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was not an internal matter of Azerbaijan.

 In addition, the Armenian side has always emphasised that the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict is primarily a matter of human rights and freedoms, and first of all, the right of the people of Artsakh to self-determination. In this sense, according to international obligations, including those assumed by the state of Azerbaijan, issues of human rights and freedoms are of direct and legitimate interest to all States and are not exclusively an internal matter of any one State. There are many examples in the world where certain countries and international organisations have directly intervened in conflict situations to prevent genocide, massacres and other serious human rights violations. In situations where human rights and freedoms, including the collective rights of peoples, are systematically and grossly violated, only intervention of the international community and the free exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination can ensure a peaceful and civilized resolution of such situations, without resorting to the use of force, violence, forced deportation and ethnic cleansing.

 Against the backdrop of the ongoing blockade, massive violations of the individual and collective rights of the people of Artsakh, and other aggressive actions, the efforts of the official Baku to present the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict as their internal affair are a clear attempt by the leadership of Azerbaijan to get carte blanche from the international community to continue the ethnic cleansing of Artsakh and expulsion of its indigenous people from their native lands. We consider Aliyev's ultimatum statements and threats to unleash a new war to be absolutely unacceptable. The people and authorities of Artsakh remain committed to the path of freedom and independence they have chosen, and no threats or difficulties created by Azerbaijan can make us turn off this path.

Are negotiations between Artsakh and Azerbaijan possible?

 The Republic of Artsakh has been and continues to be committed to the peaceful settlement of the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict. We believe that lasting peace in the region can and should be achieved through negotiations and on the basis of mutually acceptable approaches. Unilateral coercive measures can, of course, contain the issue, but this will be temporary, as evidenced by the 70-year existence of Artsakh within the Azerbaijan SSR. The political issues of the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict settlement should be discussed in an agreed and internationally recognised negotiation format based on the equal rights of the parties and in the presence of strong international guarantees for the implementation of their commitments.

 As for the addressing of urgent technical and humanitarian issues, such contacts between the parties began after the ceasefire established by the Trilateral Statement of 9 November 2020. On 11 April, the authorities of the Republic of Artsakh, through the Russian peacekeeping mission, sent a proposal to the Azerbaijani side to hold a meeting at the place of deployment and with the mediation of the command of the Russian peacekeeping forces to discuss urgent humanitarian issues. However, there was no response from Azerbaijan.

 Azerbaijan has been trying to politicise these contacts in order to eliminate the need for an international mechanism for the settlement of the conflict. By rejecting the international mechanism of dialogue with the official Stepanakert, Azerbaijan is trying to avoid the implementation of possible agreements. Involvement of the international community in the dialogue between Artsakh and Azerbaijan is the only way to guarantee a comprehensive settlement of the conflict.

What is your position on the assertion of the Azerbaijani side that, according to the Alma-Ata Declaration of 1991, the borders between the union republics are considered state borders and, therefore, Karabakh is recognised as an integral part of Azerbaijan?

First of all, it should be noted that the Alma-Ata Declaration has never been considered as a political and legal basis for the settlement of the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict or the determination of the status of Artsakh. This is indicated by the fact that by the time this declaration was adopted, negotiations on the Azerbaijan-Karabakh conflict settlement had been underway for several months already within the framework of the Zheleznovodsk process, through the mediation of the Russian Federation and Kazakhstan. After the signing of the relevant declaration, the conflict settlement process continued with the mediation of Russia, the CIS, and the CSCE/OSCE. As part of the negotiation process, international mediators developed the basic principles and elements of the settlement, according to which the status of Artsakh was to be determined through a legally binding _expression_ of will of its population. Thereby, the right of the people of Artsakh to self-determination was recognised and a mechanism was proposed for its implementation. Thus, the parties involved in the conflict and the international mediators were not guided by the Alma-Ata Declaration when developing the basic principles of the settlement.

 Moreover, the Alma-Ata Declaration, like any international document, must be guided by the objectives and principles of the UN Charter and other universal norms of international law. Therefore, the Alma-Ata Declaration contains the same principles and norms as the UN Charter, including the right to self-determination.

 In this regard, we consider it necessary to emphasise that in case of massive and serious human rights violations and discriminatory policies, the right to secession based on the principle of self-determination of peoples prevails over the principle of territorial integrity of states. This formula, in particular, is described in the Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Co-operation among States, and is also enshrined in the jurisprudence of various countries.