Compromise Not Sign of Weakness Says Defense Minister

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Defense Minister Serge Sarksian provided a briefing on the state of the country’s army and military hardware–which he said would be getting upgraded soon.

Sarksian shrugged off Azerbaijan’s repeated war rhetoric–saying "we have been hearing Baku threaten to resolve the conflict by force for ten years now–and will be likely hearing for another ten. The fact is that the combat readiness of the Armenian army is higher than that of its neighbors in the South Caucasus."

He stressed–however–that a compromise solution is not a sign of weakness. "It is easy to boast. The phrase ‘no compromises’ sounds good–but not serious. We have to be clear whether we want to prolong war–which is also an option. But we have had enough of victims. As defense minister–I will act as the people ask–and will never be led by two-three people who cannot see beyond their noses," Sarksian said.

Sarksian also spoke in favor of normalized relations with Turkey–but said they should be improved without preconditions–but stressed that this does not mean Turkey must not recognize the 1915 genocide. "Repentance is the only way to reach friendly relations," he said.

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