Today Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan is meeting his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Moscow on the sidelines of a meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) Council hosted by the Russian capital.
Armenian experts have no doubt that Moscow will do everything to prevent Armenia from signing an association agreement with the European Union. On December 17, Armenia and the EU signed an agreement on visa facilitation, while an Association Agreement and an agreement on the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area are expected to be signed as early as in November 2013. Before that, Putin is sure to be trying to win Armenia over.
An agreement on visa regime facilitation for citizens of Armenia traveling to European Union-member countries is due to be signed in Brussels today, December 17. Armenia has waived the visa requirement for citizens of EU countries who will travel to this South Caucasus republic after January 1. And this is in the case when Europe and Russia are unable to agree on visa facilitation.
The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday approved the next tranche of the loan for Armenia amounting to $51.4 million, thus bringing the total amount of credit released to Armenia to $324.4 million. The three-year $408.7 million project for Armenia was approved in 2010.
The statement by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that Washington will openly oppose Russia’s attempts to re-integrate the post-Soviet countries into a new USSR-type union has caused a stir in the expert world.
Clinton made the statement about this attempt to “re-sovietize” the former USSR space last week at a meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council in Dublin, Ireland.
The spokespersons of two former coalition partners, Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) and Prosperous Armenia Party (PAP) measured their tongues in a verbal duel Thursday in what may turn into an open inter-party confrontation ahead of next year’s presidential election.
On Tuesday leader of the Prosperous Armenia Party (PAP) Gagik Tsarukyan started a two-day visit to Brussels to meet with senior representatives of the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Agency for Foreign Affairs, parliamentarians as well as leaders of the local Armenian community.
While Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan and his foreign minister have traveled around the world extensively in 2012, they don’t seem to have played host to many senior guests in their own country during the year.
Hosting European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and neighboring Georgia’s leader attending a major European summit in Yerevan these days is rather an exception that proves what has been a rule for Armenia recently.