Armenia has asked Moscow to begin consultations on ‘protecting Armenian territorial integrity’ in accordance with the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between the two countries, if hostilities spill over to Armenia’s territory, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Friday, reported Russian state news agency TASS.
In accordance with the treaty, Russia will provide all necessary assistance to Yerevan, if fighting spills over to the territory of Armenia,” it stressed.
“We once again call on the parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to agree on an immediate ceasefire, the de-escalation of tensions and a return to substantive negotiations in order to achieve a peaceful settlement based on the underlying principles in line with the agreements reached by the foreign ministers of the Russian Federation, the Republic of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Armenia in Moscow on October 10,” the Russian Foreign Ministry concluded.
Russia has notably refused to get involved militarily in the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan in the Nagorno-Karabakh ‘frozen conflict’ of the Soviet Union. Some analysts see this as pushback from the Kremlin over Armenia’s overtures to the West under Nikol Pashinyan’s government.
However, Russia walks a fine line geopolitically and cannot allow Turkey to grow any more influence in the former Soviet region.
The Russian military has a base in Armenia, but has sold both sides weapons prior to the conflict.