Swiss Ambassador to Armenia Lukas Gasser: Switzerland will try to contribute to a peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict without questioning the established formats such as the OSCE Minsk process
by David Stepanyan
Armenia's intention to join the Customs Union does not mean that Armenia gives up European integration, Sergey Minasyan, Head of the Political Studies Department at the Caucasus Institute, says in his interview with ArmInfo.
On September 3, Armenian President confirmed Armenia's intention to join the Customs Union and the process of the formation of the Eurasian Union.
"Yerevan will continue its European integration despite the temporary and quite expensive decision to join the Customs Union. But this will be done without any commitments and, subsequently, without any political or financial support from the EU. I hope the EU understands that Armenia is in a harder condition than Ukraine given the national security problems that explain Moscow's influence on Yerevan. Therefore, I do not think that Europe will take punitive measures against us. In the meantime, Europe perfectly realizes why the European integration of Armenia has failed not only in Europe but also in the Armenian society", Minasyan says.
He points out that Armenia has taken a time-out in the matter of initialing of the Association Agreement and DCFTA, because the probability of initialing in Vilnius is not big. However, Minasyan believes that the documents will be in a standby mode and may be launched again at a well-chosen moment.
The Customs Union has been created within the Eurasian economic space for trade and economic integration of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia on the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin.