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Armenian PM: Support of business will be a top priority for us

Well-known French filmmaker Robert Gedikian shoots film about Armenian Genocide

Newspaper: Armenian Government to shortly ease tax burden on SMEs

Newspaper: Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan will shortly urge officials and parliamentarians to refuse from salary increase

David Haroutiunyan appointed as Government Chief of Staff

VTB Bank (Armenia) increases corporative crediting almost by 40% in 2013

VTB Bank (Armenia) is the leader on credit portfolio in the banking sector of Armenia

VTB Bank (Armenia) increases car loan portfolio by over 70% due to retail lending facilitation

VTB Bank (Armenia) and MasterCard launch a new card campaign

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"I'm Against" civic initiative refuses to start negotiations with Prime Minister

Hovik Abrahamyan promises to present an acceptable solution to the pension problem before late July

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European Parliament condemns attack against Kessab

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Beeline and SPB TV launch IPTV in Armenia

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On Apr 29 Armenia to sign agreement on joining Customs Union

Environmentalists launch campaign to save Lake Sevan

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David Babayan: Elmar Mammadyarov's last statement about Azerbaijan's readiness to grant Nagorno-Karabakh autonomy was absurd

Press-secretary: Prosperous Armenia Party will go on watching further actions by the Orinats Yerkir Party (Law Governed Country Party)

Political expert: The statement by US ambassador to Azerbaijan is a result of Armenia's voting on the Crimea

ArmenTel's subscribers to shortly enjoy IP television

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Politician: "Republican Party of Armenia deporting Armenians from their motherland"

In corporate strategy for 2014 Araratbank gives special priority to activities of businesswomen

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MasterCard holders among VTB Group's Armenian customers can withdraw cash from VTB Group's ATM network at the same tariffs as at VTB Bank (Armenia)

Orange offers an innovative solution for internet and fixed phone services

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Edward Nalbandian and Seyran Ohanyan reappointed

Armenian political expert skeptical about viability of "the union of the four"

Moscow: Fulfillment of "road map" will allow Armenia to join Customs Union and Eurasian Economic Union

Gagik Makaryan: Appointment of Hovik Abrahamyan as Prime Minister is intended to ease political and social tension in Armenia rather than deepen reforms

Tatul Manaseryan: Hovik Abrahamyan is able to find a common language even with the opposition

Naira Zohrabyan: The new premier of Armenia should not continue the programme of his predecessor

Regional

Vice-Speaker of Israeli Knesset to Deliver in Tbilisi Lecture on Israeli-Arabic Relations

German Chancellor Invites Garibashvili to Visit her Country

Georgian Foreign Minister to Visit Germany

Georgian Foreign Minister Attends International Conference in Vilnius

President to Have Exclusive Right to Grant Georgian Citizenship

NATO Week in Georgia Starts Today

Discussion of the Azerbaijani-Iranian relations on Culture and Tourism

Chief of General Staff of the RF to visit Baku

Ilham Aliyev will visit NAR

Georgian Premier Starts his Regional Tour

Georgian President to Hold Talks in Poland

Georgian Prime Minister Meets with EU Special Adviser

Erdogan is arriving in Baku

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U.S. Embassy: Any allegations that US government representatives are trying to foment a revolution in Azerbaijan are absolutely absurd

Foreign Minister of Afghanistan to Pay Official Visit to Georgia

Georgian Foreign Ministry Makes Strict Statement, Concerning Referendum in the Crimea

President Margvelashvili Meets Georgian Troops, Deployed in Afghanistan

Georgian Premier and Afghan Foreign Minister Discuss Two Countries' Relations

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Analyst: The USA invested $5 billion to directly support Maidan

Georgian Ambassador to Japan Hands over Credentials to His Imperial Majesty Emperor Akihito of Japan.

Tbilisi Hosts Annual PDP Conference

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Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister in Baku

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Exclusive

Vahe Hakobyan: Investments must create jobs

Sergey Markedonov: People living in Crimea and Karabakh saw no future for the countries they were attached to

Vahram Avanesyan: It is impossible to achieve serious results by means of standard and framework reforms

Wayne Merry: Situation around Ukraine is a serious alarm that the South Caucasus political nucleus must be seriously revised

Dariusz Prasek: EBRD demands absolute transparency from companies

Sargis Hatspanyan: When it comes to the change of regime in Armenia, the West washes hands of it

Andrey Yepivantsev: Only time may show if we have opened Pandora's box in the Crimea or not

Giorgi Tarkhan-Mouravi: Confrontation around the Crimea will speed up Ukraine's European integration

Ivan Kukhta: Ukraine has received a chance to be totally reset

Vaidotas Verba: Eastern Partnership project is not directed against anybody, it is simply for open opportunities

Vladimir Yevseev: The only way out of the situation in Ukraine for the West is through negotiations with Russia

Edward Sharmazanov: The principle of peoples’ right to self-determination tends to dominate in the world

Gevorg Poghosyan: Armenia is on an explosive-timing device and may explode at any moment

Sergey Grinyayev: Armenia has just to realize its status of an essential partner for Russia

Grigory Tishchenko: Strengthening of Russia’s positions in the South Caucasus will contribute to peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

Artak Shakaryan: Armenia and Diaspora should be ready for Turkey’s imitative policy in the matter of Armenian Genocide recognition

Hovhannes Igityan: Only reason why they 'invited' Armenia into the Customs Union was to show Europe who wears the pants in the post-Soviet area

Alexander Voronin: ANELIK has almost 20% of all money transfers in the CIS

Andrey Piontkovsky: Armenia has forced itself into a geopolitical corner by its 100% dependence on Russia

  • by Ashot Safaryan

  • Monday, December 9, 12:18

Mr. Piontkovsky, did Russia manage to torpedo EU’s projects for the post-Soviet countries? Ukraine was the last in that list and even Yanukovich has already begun thinking of the Customs Union. 

I think such methods of Moscow will have no significant result from the strategic point of view. Moscow will achieve nothing except hatred of its neighbors. Look at Armenia. They summoned the president of Armenia, screwed his arms, probably, threatening with no more military assistance in the Karabakh conflict, and made him suspend the Association with the EU and apply for accession to the Customs Union. I think it is absurd. Where is Armenia, and where is the Customs Union?  It is not clear what kind of trade is possible inside the Union. Look back at the reaction of Kazakhstan and Belarus to Armenia’s decision. Lukashenko and Nazarbayev don’t like such political tricks of Putin either. Aspiration for enlargement of the Customs Union implies no economic benefits for Russia. These are mad imperial ambitions and colossal efforts to create a new Soviet Union. These are Moscow’s inferiority complexes. They can exert pressure on the post-Soviet countries, but no one needs a ‘chieftain’ in Moscow. Lukashenko will never agree to become secretary of the Byelorussian regional committee. It is the Kremlin’s fight for influence that gives birth of hatred of all its partners. Russia has no opportunity to become a center of positive unification. 

Maybe, this is because of the political system…

Not only political, but also economic system. This is a criminal capitalism. This is not a market system. This is a system with no property institution. In this light, Armenia and Russia have much in common. Ukraine and Georgia somehow tried to get out of that system and make changes inside their countries. An integration union must be attractive, first of all. Meanwhile, neo-imperial ambitions, criminal-oligarchy cannot make integration attractive. Armenia, Georgia and Ukraine strive for the European Union. But for Moscow’s pressure, these countries would never abandon the Association with Europe. 

Notwithstanding all the difficulties, the European model is more attractive today, whereas the criminal Russian capitalism is doomed.  It is absolutely obsolete. Even the forecasts of the Russian Economy Ministry, not the oppositionists, demonstrate that until 2030 the Russian economy growth rates will be lower than the global economy growth rates. One thing is clear. Everything is rotten inside the power in Russia and it is impossible to make any forecasts. The system may collapse at any moment, but may even last for several years. The system does not work and there is no internal dynamics. And this dead system still seeks to keep its close neighbors under influence.  The idea of the Customs Union is not good for Armenia. How could an idea of integration with criminal economy be good? 

It is widely believed that the West has actually left the “Eastern Partnership” countries and what one can do now is to follow how Moscow is gradually closing the European integration project.

Against the background of Moscow's offensive political behavior the West looks cowardly, miserable and helpless.  We saw Obama humiliated by Putin in the Syrian crisis. There have been no such low-level leaders in West for a long time. These are small and cowardly politicians and Putin is treating them as small boys. They do not want any troubles. Putin dispatches the Western politicians better than the former USSR member states. Lukashenko, Nazarbayev and Aliyev are resisting him somehow. Armenia's situation is the tightest due to its 100% dependence on Moscow. Armenia has been simply forced into a corner due to its geographic location and the Karabakh conflict.

You have mentioned just objective reasons of Armenia’s dependence on Moscow.  Don’t you think that our leadership is guilty in that?

I cannot say that Armenian leaders lack patriotism. They are known to have participated in the Karabakh movement. But they have chosen a 100% pro-Russian strategy. Look at Azerbaijan. Ilham Aliyev is conducting a more flexible policy; it is maneuvering between the West and Russia. As for Armenia, it has forced itself into a geopolitical corner and I think everyone understands that.

 Will Armenia’s accession to the Customs Union has any impact of the Karabakh conflict’s resolution?

 

Belarus and Kazakhstan openly declared that they do not want to spoil relations with Azerbaijan. They will agree only when Baku has nothing against Karabakh’s accession to the Customs Union, which is impossible. Yerevan has found itself in an awkward situation.  Your president was forced to refuse the Association Agreement with the EU. It has turned out that no one welcomes him at the Customs Union either.

Considering the political system in the Eastern Partnership countries, wasn’t it clear from the very beginning that European integration could not be successful?

Why? Georgia, for instance, achieved big successes in democratic, political, and law-enforcement reforms under Saakashvili.  Georgia’s experience could be exemplary for the other post-Soviet countries. Even Saakashvili’s opponents in Russia admired his police reform.  That is why Moscow made such colossal efforts to overthrow Saakashvili and replace him with its minion Bidzina Ivanishvili. The latter, in turn, stole criminal money from Russia to bribe voters in Georgia

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