Armenia has no intention of abandoning the presence of Russian border guards along the Armenian-Turkish border, because patroling it would be a heavy burden for the country, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan told the Ekho Moskvy radio station.
“Russian border guards protect the border between Turkey and Armenia. That’s very important for Armenia, because our armed forces have actually been free from this obligation. It would be a heavy burden for us to shoulder all the responsibility for protecting this long border,” he said, adding that Russian border guards protect the Armenian-Iranian border as well.
Speaking about Russia’s 102nd military base, the prime minister noted that it was an important part of Armenia’s security system, so Yerevan has no plans to close it. “The existence of Russia’s 102nd military base meets Armenia’s national interests,” he stressed.
Speaking about his contacts with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pashinyan said: “Frankly, I thought he was harder. It was a pleasant surprise to me that he is a very straightforward and sincere person. What I like in our relations is that we speak about everything directly and sincerely, and I said after my latest visit to Moscow that the relations between Armenia and Russia should be without dark corners. ”
“It does not mean we will always agree on everything,” he further clarified. “It means we’ll be sincere with each other, and I think it’s the greatest friendship, when two states, two people look into each other’s eyes and speak directly, sincerely and honestly.”