Armenia's Eurasian Dilemma Political and military events
Armenia's Eurasian Dilemma
Today in Armenia, which is an ally of Russia in the South Caucasus, the public, the expert community and various political forces are discussing the practicability of membership in organizations that are not able to give an objective assessment of the ongoing processes. It is worth mentioning that officially Yerevan is a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the Eurasian Customs Union and the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). Azerbaijan isn’t a member of any of these. In addition, Armenia is the only country in the Caucasus region where Russia's military presence (the 102nd military base in Gyumri) is still preserved. However, the deterioration of the situation in the Karabakh-Azerbaijani conflict zone has revealed serious systemic problems in Russian integration projects in the post-Soviet space.
The main issue is the lack of mechanisms to coordinate the positions of the Eurasian Union and the Collective Security Treaty Organization members on important political issues. Since the beginning of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh, the authorities of Belarus have expressed support for Baku, stressing the need to restore the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. In Yerevan, it is said that such statements are contrary to the commitments made by the parties in the framework of the CSTO and other multilateral structures. Another member of this organization—Kazakhstan—was more reserved, but its expert community, close to governmental agencies, also made statements in favor of Azerbaijan. The well-known Kazakh political scientist Aidos Sarym, commenting on the situation in Karabakh, said that in order to support Armenia it is necessary to provide a historical, cultural and traditional base. He also stressed that if Kazakhstan were to choose between Azerbaijan and Armenia, it would have to choose Baku.