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Armenia adjusting its foreign policy

Wednesday, October 1
Armenia has recently been trying to strike a balance between supporting the West and supporting Russia. This policy is known as ‘complimentarism.’

After the large scale Russian aggression against Georgia, some Armenian politicians suggest that it is not necessary to irritate Russia by mentioning Armenian NATO claims too often. In the spring of 2006, then Speaker of the Armenian Parliament Artur Bagdasarian was forced to resign due to his publicly declared preference for NATO and EU orientation for Armenia, and the issue is still a live one.

Today the situation is rather difficult. On the one hand the country wants to continue moving towards the EU and NATO, as stated by Vice Speaker of Parliament Arevik Petrosian, but MP and former Deputy Defence Minister Vahan Shirkhanian is one of many who recommends that the country’s leadership should stop flirting with NATO.

At the end of September, during a seminar for different political parties and organizations in Armenia, the major subject discussed was NATO-Armenian relations. The seminar decreed that after the Russian aggression against Georgia Armenia needs to make a new effort to identify its military security problems and maintain a firm position. Most probably, this position will be pro-Russian.