Armenian, Russian Troops Hold Joint Drills

Heavy artillery vehicles with Armenian and Russian flags during last year's joint exercises (Photlur)

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)—Hundreds of Armenian and Russian soldiers are holding week-long military exercises in central Armenia that are aimed at testing and boosting their interoperability.

In a statement, the press office of Russia’s Southern Military District said the “tactical” exercises, which began on Monday, involve two battalions from the Russian military base in Armenia and the Armenian army’s special Peacekeeping Brigade. The latter contributes troops to ongoing NATO-led missions in Afghanistan and Kosovo.

“During a simulation of hostilities, the servicemen will repel attacks, go on the offensive and destroy the retreating detachments as well as a detected sabotage-reconnaissance squad of the imaginary enemy,” said the statement. The participating troops are backed up by tanks, helicopters and various artillery systems, including long-range Russian Giatsint cannons.

According to the statement, the purpose of the war games taking place near Mount Aragats is to “improve coordination of command centers in combat operations.”

The Armenian Defense Ministry has issued no statements on the drills yet.

Russia and Armenia practice joint military operations on a regular basis in line with their close military ties. Soldiers from the two nations also train together within the framework of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a Russian-led military alliance of six former Soviet republics. Armenia hosted CSTO exercises in September last year.


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  1. From Russia Without Love said:

    Oh yes this is wonderful news.

    Meanwhile the US sent a few more billion to Israel for free, while mother Russia raised the gas prices to Armenia instead of sending for free, and paraded and humiliated a Karabakh war veteran in women’s clothes on national Russian TV.

    What a wonderful best friend we have!
    God bless mother Russia!

    • George said:

      Explain to Russian citizens why they should pay for all exports of gas to Armenia. I am shocked Russian-Armenian relations are at such a point where people like you now want Russia to treat Armenia as if Russia is completely beholden to us. And since you are so fond of comparing Armenia-Russia to Israel-USA, please tell me when was the last time that Israel did something before getting preclearance or support from USA, as Armenia has many times done things to infuriate Russia?

    • Armanen said:

      Russia provides weapons to Armenia for free or discount prices, the natural gas price Armenia pays is way below market price, and Armenia falls under Russia’s nuclear umbrella. What do you do for Armenia other than provide asinine comments?

    • said:

      I doubt you are writing from Russia…
      If Russia didn’t sell gas and provide free weaponry to Armenia, who would? USAID?
      As for mistreatment of the veteran, these were individual people who did that, not “Russia.”

      If they were so anti-Armenian why would they let an ethnic Armenian prosecutor to handle the case? As for veterans in general, I read about at least of one who was arrested in LA for murder. What happened to him?

    • lobo said:

      Don’t forget arms sales to the Azeris. Because, well you know… That’s business and Russia is trying to keep the balance now…

  2. AraK said:

    I NEVER fully trusted Russia. These BS drills are to appease Armenians. I agree that politics have no feelings but trying to destroy an ally without any serious reason? Our successive despicable oligarch leaders were and are busy selling the country for their own benefit instead of developing the economy and today we are facing a serious and dangerous situation.
    God (if he exists) save Armenia.

  3. From US without Intelligence said:

    Oh yes, the US sends weapons for free, not because there is a strong Jewish lobby forcing the U.S. government (which they have infiltrated) to send weapons for free, but because American rednecks care about Israel. Right!

    Armenians don’t have political foresight, as the comment of “From Russia Without Love.” shows. Don’t shift responsibilities to other nations, Armenians ought to be united and lobby and work to obtain more special advantages or weapons – nothing is for free.

    Friends don’t exists, only self-interests. I feel pain that my nation’s peasants have reached the political self-destructive “intelligence” of that of Arabs. The real reason why Armenia suffers today…

  4. Avetis said:

    God bless Mother Russia and God bless our Armenian homeland and may God help preserve our two countries’ centuries old alliance against enemies both foreign and domestic.