Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, currently on a visit to the South Caucasus, on Tuesday met with Armenian Defence Minister Seyran Ohanyan, in the capital Yerevan. Shoigu arrived in Armenia yesterday after a short visit to Azerbaijan during which he met with President Ilham Aliev.
Later today Shoigu will participate in a meeting of Defence Ministers of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) taking place in the Armenian capital. Delegations from the defense ministries of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, as well as the general secretary of the CSTO Nikolay Bordyuzha and chief of the joint general staff of the CSTO, Colonel-General Anatoli Sidorov, are expected to participate in the meeting.
Azerbaijan is not a member of the CSTO but in recent years has extensively increased its military co-operation with Russia.
photo; The Defence Ministers of Russia and Armenia at their meeting in Yerevan on 16 August 2016 (picture courtesy of the press service of the Defence Ministry of Armenia).
Mammadov has been part of Azerbaijan's ruling circle for a long time. He has headed the Foreign Relations Department of the Presidential Administration since 1997 and was appointed Assistant to the President for Foreign Affairs in 2017. He was also the Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration.
Demonstrations and street protests in Armenia gathered momentum on Friday (20 April) with protestors blocking traffic in large parts of the capital Yerevan, before gathering for an evening rally in the centre of the city, an event which observers say attracted up to 50,000 people.