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Sargsyan: Russian arms sale to Azerbaijan may have negative impact on Armenian-Russian relations

Russian arms supply to Azerbaijan is a problem that may negatively affect the Armenian-Russian relations. It is a problem that must be solved, President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan told reporters at the international media forum “At the Foot of Mount Ararat” in Yerevan. “Since the establishment of the Armed Forces of Armenia, we have been grateful to our ally for its support. Of course, in these relations there is a circumstance that bothers us i.e. Russia sells arms to Azerbaijan for different reasons. No matter what kind of weapons Russia sells to Azerbaijan. The point is that the soldier on the border realizes that they try to kill him with Russian weapons. This is the hardest thing that may negatively affect our relations,” the president said.

Serzh Sargsyan recalled that Armenians and Russians have lived side by side for 250 years, had common enemies and ‘never fired at each other with the weapons they produced.’ “It is a problem. And It must be solved,” he said.

It is noteworthy that Azerbaijan is the second country in Europe by arms import. The Stockholm-based International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) published a report on new data on international arms transfers. Arms imports by Azerbaijan increased by 249 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14. It yields only to UK that accounts for 14% of global imports. Azerbaijan’s arms import accounts for 13% of the global arms imports. Azerbaijan imports 85% of arms from Russia. Meanwhile, Armenia’s arms import accounts for only 4% of Azerbaijan’s import.

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