In Armenia, Unanimous Praise for Russia’s Message on Karabakh

Armenian and Russian flags in Gyumri, Armenia

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)—Armenia’s leading political groups praised the commander of Russian troops station in the country for stating that his forces could fight on the Armenian side if Azerbaijan attempts a military solution to Nagorno-Karabakh.

Colonel Andrey Ruzinsky made the statement in a recent interview with a Russian Defense Ministry newspaper. He cited Russia’s “obligations within the framework of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).”

Azerbaijani officials were quick to condemn the statement. They said that since Karabakh is an internationally recognized part of Azerbaijan an Azerbaijani attempt to reconquer the disputed territory cannot be considered an attack on Armenia warranting military action by the latter’s CSTO allies.

“This is an indicator of poor subordination in the Russian state hierarchy,” Mubariz Gurbanli, the deputy executive secretary of Azerbaijan’s ruling party, told the Turan news agency. “Under a normal state system a soldier making such a statement would have been kicked out.”

Armenian reaction was diametrically opposite. The chief spokesman for the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (HHK), Eduard Sharmazanov, said Russia thus openly questioned Azerbaijani sovereignty over Karabakh. “This is a clear message to Azerbaijan’s leadership that in case of restarting hostilities they will find themselves in a very bad situation,” Sharmazanov told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (

Aghvan Vartanian, a leader of the opposition Armenian Revolutionary Federation, called the Russian commander’s remark “unprecedented.” “It means something,” he said.

“Of course for us the key thing is to be able to defend us and Nagorno-Karabakh by ourselves. But CSTO member states have certain obligations here,” added Vartanian.

Tevan Poghosian, a parliament deputy representing the opposition Zharangutyun party, claimed that the statement reflects mediating powers’ reluctance to help Azerbaijan regain control over Karabakh. “They realize that Artsakh is not part of Azerbaijan,” he said, referring to Russia, France and the United States.


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  1. Tony said:

    Beware Azeri_Baljan. You are doomed to a fatal blow by Righteous forces. Turkey will not be able to help you. Killing innocent people will destroy your newly established statehood that was gifted to you by Ottoman Turkey. Your homeland is in Mongolia. Go back where you came from; take your cousin Turkey with you so that you don’t feel alone.

  2. Avetis said:

    Breaking all diplomatic norms, Moscow has again gone out of its way – risking serious political damage – to express its steadfast support for the Armenian state. Baku has known very well where Moscow has stood on the matter of Artsakh. Had it not been for Moscow making sure Armenia can protect itself, Artsakh would have been back under Turkish rule by now. Which leads me to believe that this comment by the Russian commander was directed towards our politically illiterate people. It’s time to wake up from our Western fairytales (gay rights and democracy) and begin the process to – pan-nationally – take advantage of the historic opportunities provided by Russia. Anyone listening? Does anyone understand?

    God bless Russia. God bless Armenia. And may God help protect and preserve Russo-Armenian relations from enemies both foreign and domestic.

  3. Arman said:

    “Could fight on the Armenian side” doesn’t mean “will fight on the Armenian side.” Throughout the original article that expressed the Colonel’s statements, I found no definitive wording. Therefore, the childish reaction among Armenians is more significant to me, than the Colonel’s vague “assurances.” Armenians should not react like childish amateurs.

  4. From Russia Without Love said:

    When the Artsakh army was ready to eradicate the Azeri threat for good in 1994, dear old “mother Russia” stopped them from gaining Armenia’s other lands, future security and long-term success as well as demilitarizing a terrorist Turkic state in the Caucasus.

    All you dupes both inside and outside Armenia think about this carefully before putting your mule blockers on.

  5. mgl said:

    And the next logical move should be declaring unification of Artsakh and Armenia by the Armenian government.

  6. Norin Radd said:

    “This is an indicator of poor subordination in the Russian state hierarchy,” Mubariz Gurbanli, the deputy executive secretary of Azerbaijan’s ruling party, told the Turan news agency. “Under a normal state system a soldier making such a statement would have been kicked out.”

    The above IDIOTIC STATEMENT came from a country that glorified their own axe murdering soldier Ramil Safarov after he was convicted in a European court (Hungary) of first degree murder but then returned to Azerbaboonjan to cheering crowds and Presidential praise for having murdered fellow NATO SPONSORED participant Gurgen Margaryan.

    If any country does not know how soldiers should conduct themselves it’s Azerbaboonjan not to mention Europe’s whore, Hungary. Go eat a pipe Mr. Gurbanli !

  7. Ara said:

    Excitement, excitement excitement hmm. Russians will save Armenia!!!!????? …hmm. Well … Russians can help Armenians to stay enemies with neighbors too.
    ….. THE….. TRUTH !!!
    US nuke warheads in Turkey make Russians to have military base more then love to Armenian people. Relying on Russia’s military without having own strength is a road to self destruction.
    Armenia needs honest , healthy mind and motherland devoted people more then Russian weapons and solders. The main source of strength is in being united and loving your country. Mean time there should be absence of hatred but respect and if possible love to neighbor nations. A nation can not live in animosity, hatred forever. Insults are only increasing number of enemies and making situation worse.

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