Russian Politician Says Artsakh Can’t Join EEU

Nikolay Ryzhkov


YEREVAN (Armenpress)—The Russian Co-Chairman of the Armenian-Russian Interparliamentary Commission, Nikolay Ryzhkov, said he isn’t inclined to draw any parallels between Artsakh and Crimea in terms of accession to the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).

During a press conference following the 25th session of the Commission in Yerevan, journalists asked Ryzhkov why Russia is included in the EEU together with Crimea while Armenia will join the EEU without Artsakh.

“I understand that Nagorno-Karabakh is a very sensitive matter for Armenia, but unlike Karabakh, Crimea took a decision to join Russia by means of a referendum. We couldn’t forbid Crimean people to do that. Moreover, Crimea has been a Russian territory before Khrushchyov gifted the peninsula to Ukraine under the influence of intoxicants. As regards Karabakh, I think it is necessary first of all to clearly determine its status and then to discuss the issue you have raised,” Ryzhkov said to the journalists.

When commenting on Russia’s deliveries of military hardware to Azerbaijan, Ryzhkov said that he had repeatedly expressed his opinion about that. He pointed out that he does not know why Moscow is selling arms to Baku. “I will only say that the Council of Federation has taken no decisions on delivery of military hardware,” he stressed.

“This is our first session after Armenia signed the agreement on EEU membership on October 10. I would like to congratulate the Republic of Armenia on that occasion. This makes the development of the interparliamentary cooperation between Armenia and Russia more important,” Ryzhkov told Armenpress.

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11 Comments

  1. Armenian said:

    ““I understand that Nagorno-Karabakh is a very sensitive matter for Armenia, but unlike Karabakh, Crimea took a decision to join Russia by means of a referendum. We couldn’t forbid Crimean people to do that. Moreover, Crimea has been a Russian territory before Khrushchyov gifted the peninsula to Ukraine under the influence of intoxicants. As regards Karabakh, I think it is necessary first of all to clearly determine its status and then to discuss the issue you have raised,” Ryzhkov said to the journalists.”

    LOL

    I wonder how much our masochist Russophiles are enjoying this statement. As if Karabagh did not make a decision to join Armenia by referendum? Karabagh’s independence is more legitimate than “Crimea’s”.

  2. hiedi said:

    *** Ok., then if Crimea took a decision to join Russia by means of referendum,( according to the Russian diplomat ) then Karabakh ( Artsakh ) being historic Armenian land and its entire population can vote to join Armenia by the same argument., how about that.?

  3. mgl said:

    Karabakh was always Armenian land before Crimea became Russian territory. And population of Karabakh took decision to join Armenia 25 years earlier than recent Crimean people vote. Double standards tovaresh Ruzkov :-(

  4. Hagop D said:

    This clueless Russian politician needs to get an education before he makes a fool of himself like a typical Azeri “historian”. Khrushchev gifted the territory of Crimea to Ukraine? Cool. And what does he propose happened in the case of Artskah-Karabakh at the hands of Stalin? And Javakhk, and Nakhichevan, and western Armenia. And what exactly is “Azerbaijan” which has been largely carved out of Armenian lands? And by this logic, so the people of Artsakh can make their own referendum and join Armenia, and he has no reason to oppose it. And by the way, only the people of Artsakh have the right to determine their future, they defended their land, they gave their blood, and they won. Case closed.

  5. Gurgen said:

    Very typical of Asbarez, Ryzhkov’s statements was taken out of context and shamelessly served to the American-Armenian sheeple with a misleading title. The Russian official in question is in fact one of Armenia’s traditional supporters in Moscow. Instead of supporting him and embracing him, this is what you do to him? I guess the enemies of Armenia want Ryzhkov to be misrepresented within the Armenian community.

    Regarding Crimea: No folks, Crimea is NOT similar to Artsakh. Crimea became ‘officially’ part of a Russian state several centuries ago when the territory was liberated from Tatar/Turkish occupation. For reasons still unknown, Crimea was severed from the Russian state several decades ago by Khrushchev. When Russia annexed it several months ago Kiev did not dare fight for it and the Crimea people ‘voted to join’ the Russian Motherland. In reality, what’s closer to the situation in Artsakh is Transnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Novorossiya. Last I checked, those territories were not being incorporated into the Eurasian Union. Even with Crimea, Russia waited decades for the perfect opportunity to liberate it. Similarly, Russia waited over fifteen years to liberate Abkhazia and Ossetia. Transnistria is still in the works. In other words, Moscow has not done anything spontaneously, arbitrarily or haphazardly.

    Armenians need a better understanding of geopolitics and how international relations work. Armenians’ political illiteracy is the primary reason why we have not been successful in nation-building in the south Caucasus.

    With that said, other than nationalist nutjobs and Western mercenaries within the Armenian community, all those who have a healthy understanding of international relations immediately recognize Ryzhkov’s statements as being pro-Artsakh. Artsakh will remain Armenian – with the full blessings of Russia.

    • Hagop D said:

      Asbarez did nothing wrong, merely reported what a Russian politician stated. There may be some translation lost, but even some in Armenia have expressed their dismay at what he stated. Is Ryzhkov a pro-Armenian? Well it seems he is and we can be thankful for that where appropriate, but then that does no good when inaccurate ideas are floated around which can hurt Artsakh’s interests, especially using a “historical argument”. He should have just kept silent about comparing Crimea and Artsakh using historical “proof”.

      Of course, as usual you speak from Russia’s and not from Artsakh’s perspective, so you naturally reiterate what Ryzhkov stated. Is that supposed to be convincing? For your information Artsakh and Armenia enthusiastically supported the Crimea referendum, because they support people’s right to self-determination and likened it as a similar situation. “It isn’t the same thing” only means that Armenia does not have the same power as Russia to annex Artsakh because Russia does not want it that way. Don’t try to present ‘history’ to prove your point, because using history would accomplish the opposite task for you. Russia liberated the territory of Crimea several centuries ago? Nice, and what did Armenians do to Nagorno-Karabakh just two decades ago? Did they not also liberate it from Turks/Tatars/Azeris? And like Crimea was not the majority of the population Armenian compared to Crimea’s majority Russians? And as Khrushchev “gifted” Crimea to Ukraine, did not Stalin do the same with Artsakh? Facts are facts. In fact, from a historical perspective, if Crimea is a part of Russia, Artsakh is a part of Armenia a million times over.

  6. Avetis said:

    Armenians iof Nagorno Karabakh never voted to unite with Armenia. They voted to gain their independence from Baku. For sound geopolitical calculations (primarily to avoid a war with Baku) Yerevan has not recognized Artsakh’s independence – although Yerevan treats Artsakh as one of its provinces. As Gurgen said, Ryzhkov is one of Russia’s pro-Armenian politicians. Gurgen is also right in suggesting that Artsakh’s situation is closer to Transnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Novorossiya. From a legal perspective, Crimea was officially part of the Russian state for centuries until several decades the Politburo, in an internal matter that was mostly symbolic, made it part of Ukraine. The territory of Artsakh was officially under Persian and then Russian rule for the past one thousand years. With that said, everyone, including Russian officials known that Artsakh will never go back under Azeri rule. Everyone, including Azeris and Turks know that Russians don’t want Artsakh to go back under Azeri rule. Ryzhkov is a high level politician and Moscow is still trying to keep Baku within its orbit. Therefore, he has to choose his words carefully.

  7. Harutik said:

    I agree with Avetis and Gurgen that the Russian official’s comments were taken out of context and delivered with bad intent. With regards to his comments about Crimea vs. Artsakh: We need to be mature enough to recognize that at the end of the day, those with the biggest guns will make the laws. With that said, as a high ranking Russian official who’s nation is doing its best to keep ties with both Baku and Yerevan, Ryzhkov could not have said what he said any other way. In the big geopolitical context, he is correct: When the powers de jour settle the matter and Artsakh’s independent or unification with Armenia is recognized, Artsakh will be officially allowed into the Eurasian Union. Until then, Artsakh will be defacto part of the Eurasian Union – with Moscow’s blessings.

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