An newspaper belonging to Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan published a story on Tuesday, October 4, maintaining that Russia wants Armenia to become part of Russia or the Russia-Belarus Union State.
Haykakan Zhamanak daily cited a “reliable source” behind the second part of an article - whose beginning was made public on Monday - claiming that Russia's “desires” in the region fit into its “chain of global desires”, and that Armenia and Karabakh are a “link” in that chain.
“Russia wants from Armenia almost the same as from Ukraine – so that it becomes part of the Russia-Belarus Union State or Russia,” the article reads.
“And if in the case of Ukraine the Russian Federation uses Russian and perhaps Belarusian troops for such a result, in the case of Armenia it is using Azerbaijan’s army and, to some extent, the Russian troops stationed in Armenia.”
Russia is reportedly seeking to show Armenia's security vulnerability so that Yerevan asks to become a part of the Russia-Belarus Union State. This is evidenced by Azerbaijan’s aggression, the “inertness” of the Russian troops stationed in Armenia, the “political inertness” of Russia and the non-fulfillment of obligations to supply arms to Armenia, the piece says.
“The use of the last tool is not accidental and has been employed before: for example, before and after the 2016 war. Armenia should be as vulnerable as possible to embrace Russia as tightly as possible,” the article says.
The Nagorno- Karabakh conflict too fits into this logic, with some difference.
“Russia needs the non-resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh issue as a lever of influence on both Armenia and Azerbaijan. This desire has been the cornerstone of the status quo established for decades in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict zone, and based on this cornerstone, it was possible continue Armenia's policy of endlessly negotiations. This continued until 2011, when Russia gradually came to feel the need to change the status quo,” the paper says.
In the event of a “foreseeable or impending conflict” with the West, transport routes would have to be closed, and using the “Armenia-Azerbaijan axis” would serve to ensure land communication. The “Lavrov Plan”, attributed to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, sought to surrender the southern regions of Nagorno-Karabakh to Azerbaijan, so that a railroad and land roads connecting Azerbaijan and Nakhijevan through Armenia was “freed from obstacles”.
“Despite public statements, Russia is the main beneficiary of a corridor through the territory of Armenia, because Azerbaijan, Turkey and Russia want a corridor through the territory of Armenia under the control of the Russian Federation,” the article says.
In the first part of the article, Haykakan Zhamanak published Azerbaijan’s demands from Armenia: 1) Dissolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army, 2) Recognition of Nagorno-Karabakh as part of Azerbaijan, without any, even autonomous status, i.e. with 0 status, 3) Corridor through the territory of Armenia, 4) Demarcation and delimitation using maps of 1919, 1920 (so far it is unclear which maps are we talking about), 5) Clarification of the fate of the missing Azerbaijanis, possibly with a tendency to accuse Armenia of war crimes in the future.