NewsPutin agrees to withdraw troops from Armenia amid Western pivot

Putin agrees to withdraw troops from Armenia amid Western pivot

Vladimir Putin agreed to withdraw some Russian forces from Armenia.
Vladimir Putin agreed to withdraw some Russian forces from Armenia.
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8:21 AM EDT, May 9, 2024

Vladimir Putin has agreed to withdraw some of the Russian forces from Armenia. Upon Yerevan's request, Russian officers will remain positioned at the borders with Turkey and Iran. This decision emerged from a meeting between the Russian leader and the Prime Minister of Armenia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed to pull back Russian soldiers and border guard officers from various areas of Armenia, as reported on Thursday by Reuters, citing Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

The agreement was reached in a meeting between Putin and the Armenian Prime Minister, Nikol Pashinyan. The discussions concluded with an understanding that, at Yerevan's urging, Russian border guard officers will continue to be deployed along the Armenian borders with Turkey and Iran.

Armenia seeks closer ties with the West

Armenia has endeavored to establish closer ties with the West for some time. This shift is attributed to the escalating tensions between Armenia and its erstwhile ally, Russia.

Yerevan has criticized Moscow for its lack of support in the conflict with Azerbaijan, especially during the offensive conducted by Baku in Nagorno-Karabakh in the autumn of 2023. Russian peacekeeping forces took a passive stance, leading to a victory for Baku, the loss of independence for Nagorno-Karabakh, and a mass exodus of the Armenian population.

A clear indicator of souring relations is Armenia's suspension from participation in the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) under Russian dominion, which was taken in February of this year.

In March, Armenia's Foreign Minister, Ararat Mirzoyan, disclosed that the nation's leaders "are contemplating" the pursuit of membership in the European Union. Moreover, recently, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg marked his first visit to Armenia since assuming his position.

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