Armenia Welcomes Russian Military Hardware

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Armenia is welcoming the first column of Russian military hardware–pulled out from neighboring Georgia. A ceremony welcoming the coming weaponry that will enhance the Russian military base in Armenia will be held on the Armenian-Georgian border on Friday October 27.

Armenian Defense Minister Serzh Sarkisyan told Itar-Tass the hardware redeployment would not be in violation of the Conventional Forces in Europe treaty.

Seventy-six armored vehicles are withdrawing from the base in Alkhalkalaki–South Georgia–to Armenia. The process will be over by November 13–2000–a representative of the command of the Russian troops in Transcaucasia told Itar-Tass. He said that the procedure of redeployment has been agreed both with Armenian and Georgian authorities.

Russia has its Gyumri military base in Armenia in conformity with an inter-state agreement.

Russian Vice-Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov said that the withdrawal of excessive Russian armamen’s from Georgia under the agreement reached in Istanbul in 1999 goes according to plan.

"The withdrawal of Russian military bases will also go according to schedule"–he added. Since August–Russia has pulled out 210 pieces of military hardware and weaponry from the military base in Vaziani and 20 pieces of military hardware and weaponry from the military base in Batumi.

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