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Armenia’s Ex-Ambassador To Russia Explains Whether Putin Will Fly To Armenia After Yerevan Joins ICC

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Armenia’s Ex-Ambassador To Russia Explains Whether Putin Will Fly To Armenia After Yerevan Joins ICC
STEPAN GRIGORYAN

The head of the Kremlin can now be arrested.

Armenia has officially joined the states-members of the International Criminal Court in the Hague, which issued an arrest warrant for Putin last March.

What do they say about this in Yerevan? Will the head of the Kremlin be arrested if he flies to Armenia? Charter97.org website spoke about this with one of the leaders of the democratic movement in Armenia in the 1990s, former deputy of the Supreme Council of the republic and ex-ambassador of Armenia to Russia Stepan Grigoryan:

— Russia was very sensitive about Armenia’s accession to the ICC and the fact that our parliament ratified the Rome Statute in October last year.

Russia did everything to prevent Armenia from ratifying the statute, so the process dragged on for a year. Now Putin cannot enter Armenia. It is clear that if he arrives, our people will not dare to arrest him, but since legally he now has no right to enter Armenia, I am absolutely sure that he will not arrive.

By the way, this year Armenia chairs the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC). According to tradition, the organization's summit is held in the chair country. Formally, the EurAsEC summit was to be held in Yerevan. But it has already been decided that the summit will be in Moscow in May this year. This is proof that Putin cannot, and does not plan to come to our country.

I note that there are rumors all the time that Russia is putting pressure on Armenia so that our country signs a bilateral agreement with it so that Putin can be arrested if he flies to Yerevan.

— Prime Minister Pashinyan said that Russia can no longer be a military partner of Armenia. How will Yerevan build its security concept now?

— This is not the first time Nikol Pashinyan has said that Russia did not fulfill its allied obligations when Azerbaijan attacked Armenia. This is a very important detail.

The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) did not fulfill its allied obligations, and neither did Russia. It is very good and correct that our government has spoken about this many times. But the main thing is that Russia is not just not our ally, but even more — it is an enemy of Armenia.

Russia helped Azerbaijan carry out ethnic cleansing of Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh. In literally all of its actions, Russia goes against us.

The Armenian authorities say the following: “Yes, Russia is no longer an ally, it does not fulfill its obligations, so we need to think about what to do next.”

Our main complaint to the authorities is the following: after political statements, we need to move on to real actions! It is necessary to withdraw from the CSTO agreement, and raise the question of the withdrawal of the Russian military base from Armenia.

— Then with whom do you see Armenia’s military-strategic cooperation in the future?

— At the moment there is military cooperation between Armenia and France, Armenia and India. Allied relations are very important to us. Who does Armenia plan to do this with? As far as I understand, the government has not yet made a decision on this matter.

You know, we now have a very good situation regarding alliances — there are no alternatives. This is very often useful.

I believe that we should have an alliance with the EU and NATO. We must go in this direction. Yes, we can work with other countries, our neighbors, but Armenia’s place is in integration with the EU. In the military field — cooperation with NATO.

A very significant component of our security must be built on a bilateral alliance with the United States, Canada, Germany and France. That is, we must build our security together with the democratic world. I don’t see any other alternatives today.

The main thing we are now telling the government is to decide quickly! Time matters now.

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