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The main dimensions of Armenia’s foreign and security policy

Narek S. Galstyan, 26 March 2013

This policy brief surveys the core principles and objectives of Armenia’s foreign policy, which is influenced by the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani-Turkish blockade and isolation of Armenia, Turkey’s unwillingness to settle relations with Armenia without preconditions, Armenia’s dependence on Georgian transit routes and its excessive dependence on Russia in strategic areas of its economy. To deal with these negative influences, Armenia’s foreign policy includes a military-strategic alliance with Russia, a regional partnership with Iran, and deepening relations with the EU, U.S. and NATO.

The main conclusions of this analysis are as follows:

  • The policy of Turkey and Azerbaijan towards Armenia is destructive. There are no essential changes in their policy toward Armenia and the Nagorno-Karabakh issue, despite various agreements, the calls of the international community and Armenia’s readiness to find compromise solutions.
  • To diversify its energy and communication routes in order to balance Turkey’s influence, Armenia should develop relations with Iran, but international sanctions against that country adversely affect Armenia’s security. A military strike against Iran over the nuclear weapons issue would have extremely negative consequences for Armenia.
  • Armenia should deepen its relations with the West and Russia to balance the influence of these powers on its affairs.

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