67% of Armenians prefer Russia over the EU: Discussions at the Caucasus Institute

Artak Barseghyan
Public Radio of Armenia

The roadmap of Armenia’s accession to the Customs Union is being worked out. “Yerevan expects Armenia’s membership to be mutually beneficial if the Customs Union proves viable,” Alexander Markarov, Director of the Armenian Branch of the Institute of the Commonwealth of Independent States, told a press conference today.

“Eighty percent of Armenian citizens consider the EU an important partner and expect activeness on the part of Europe as regards bilateral cooperation,” Markarov said, quoting the results of a recent survey.

“At the same time, when the respondents are offered a choice between Russia and the European Union, 67% prefer the first as compared to 17% of EU supporters,” he said.

According to expert of Turkish studies Ruben Melkonyan, Armenia’s membership in the Customs Union could be of geopolitical importance in the context of relations with Turkey.

As for the Armenian-Turkish relations, Melkonyan said “they remain frozen because of Ankara’s non-constructive policy. ” “Yesterday’s visit of the Turkish Foreign Minister was another proof of the propagandist, rather than practical position of the Turkish side,” he said.

Speaking about the Nagorno Karabakh issue, political scientist Sergey Minasyan noted that that “the status quo is firmly maintained.” According to the political scientist, the regional and geopolitical developments have contributed to this. “Even the meeting of the Armenian and Azerbaijani Presidents in Vienna failed to ensure progress,” he said.

At the same time, Minasyan noted that that the statement of September 3 and the Russian President’s visit to Armenia are strongly linked to the settlement process.

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