Pundit warns against overestimating Armenia's importance in regional dynamics

    REGION  04 March 2024 - 17:54

    In a recent interview with Armenian media, political analyst Alexander Iskandaryan cautioned against overestimating Armenia's significance in regional politics.

    Iskandaryan emphasized that while Armenia remains formally associated with organizations like the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), its membership in these institutions may not hold substantial weight in practical terms, Caliber.Az reports via Armenian media.

    "The CSTO is in a serious crisis in general, and not only in connection with Armenia. What can happen if Armenia leaves the CSTO? At present Armenia is not, in fact, in the CSTO, we have a crisis in security relations with Russia for two years, since 2022 for sure, if not earlier. Armenia had a crisis with other CSTO countries from the beginning, and it has always existed,” he said.

    Iskandaryan noted that the CSTO is experiencing a significant crisis, extending beyond Armenia's own security concerns. He pointed out that Armenia's strained relations with Russia within the CSTO have persisted for several years, and leaving the organization might not have a substantial impact. Additionally, he highlighted the economic dimension of Armenia's relationship with Russia through the EAEU, emphasizing the importance of economic ties, particularly in trade and energy.

    “As for the EAEU, Armenia has no difficulties there yet, but there is no doubt that the relations between Armenia and Russia are in crisis. And Lavrov's statements should be understood as Russia's dissatisfaction with this situation. It is just necessary to understand that the EAEU is an economy, it is gas prices, it is Armenian goods on the Russian market, it is all kinds of money that is transferred. And if we imagine that Moscow will cut economic routes from Armenia to Russia and back in retaliation, then there will be no instruments of influence on Armenia at all. However, even if this happens, it will not hit Russia very seriously. Let's not overestimate the importance of Armenia. Armenia is not Türkiye, China or even Kazakhstan. But it will hit Armenia hard,” the expert underlined.

    However, Iskandaryan cautioned that if Russia were to sever economic routes with Armenia, it could significantly impact Armenia while potentially not seriously affecting Russia. He urged against overestimating Armenia's importance in the broader geopolitical landscape, comparing its situation to that of Georgia during the era of Mikhail Saakashvili's leadership. Iskandaryan drew parallels between Armenia's current political dynamics and Georgia's experience with color revolutions, leadership changes, and shifting rhetoric towards Russia.

    “I agree with the opinion that Armenia to some extent is gradually turning into a kind of Georgia in the era of Mikhail Saakashvili's rule in its relations with Russia. It is clear that the countries are different, the periods are different, but the phenomenon of color revolution, the arrival of a certain type of leader, rhetoric, then loss of popularity and work to push away from Russia - it is similar," Iskandaryan concluded.

    Caliber.Az

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