Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan raised the issue of Russian deliveries of armaments to Azerbaijan, saying that they were “fully used” in the latest outbreak of violence in the Karabakh conflict zone, as he received Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev late on Thursday.
During the meeting Sargsyan said that the matter had elicited a “great resonance” in Armenia “because people in Armenia consider Russia to be its closest ally and friend.”
“Now there is a situation in which we do not exclude another provocation… Without having any great illusions, we expect from the Minsk Group co-chairs and our allies targeted statements and concrete actions,” he said.
Earlier, at a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Armenian Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan called for acceleration of the planned delivery of $200 million worth of Russian weapons to Armenia.
The deal is viewed as critical to Armenia to keep up its military balance with Azerbaijan, which in recent years has acquired $4 billion worth of modern offensive and other weapons from Russia.
It used such lethal weapons as TOS-1 and Smerch in its offensive operations in Nagorno-Karabakh on April 2-5.
Premier Medvedev, for his part, said that “now the most important thing is to preserve peace and return to the negotiating table, even if the background of these negotiations is, to put it mildly, not the very best.”
“There is no alternative to peace talks,” the head of the Russian government said, as quoted by Sargsyan’s press office.
During the meeting Sargsyan also voiced regret that “some of our partners in the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) refused to come to Yerevan to participate in an earlier planned event.”
Earlier, it transpired that Kazakhstan, a key member of the Russian-led trade bloc, asked for the venue of the EEU summit scheduled for April 8 to be moved to Moscow, apparently conditioning its reluctance to take part in the meeting by the latest flare-up of tensions in Nagorno-Karabakh.