The Russian Defence Minister, Sergei Shoigu is currently on an official visit to Armenia. Yesterday he met with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan. A statement on the President's web site said that "At the meeting, the parties stressed the importance of furthering the Armenian-Russian strategic relations and deepening of the military and technical cooperation, underscoring its importance in the context of the current challenges.
The President of Armenia and Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation discussed future cooperation programs in that area." Shoigu this morning also met with Armenian Defence Minister Seyran Ohanyan after which he was expected to travel to Gyumri to visit the large Russian Military base there. Russian media reports recently satated that the base was being expanded and that there had been a large increase in the number of locally enlisted personnel on the base.
photo: Sergei Shoigu with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan (picture courtesy of the press Service of the President of Armenia).
Getting the Eastern Neighbourhood right is a key necessity for the future security and prosperity of Europe. The Brussels summit offers an opportunity for important steps on this matter in the right direction – not as an end in themselves but rather as a part of a longer term and more ambitious vision.
An incident at a military facility of the self-declared Nagorno-Karabakh Republic resulted in three Armenian soldiers killed and one seriously injured. It is not clear what the exact circumstances of the incident were, but for the moment it is being treated as an accident.