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Armenian U-Turn On EU Not As 'Objective' As Thought

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Armenia's last-minute decision to join a Russian-led customs union at the expense of much closer ties with the European Union has been widely attributed in the West to strong pressure and bullying by Russia. The dominant view among policymakers, diplomats, and pundits there is that President Serzh Sarkisian had no choice but to cave in because of his country's heavy dependence on its main geopolitical ally.

The picture is more complex on closer inspection, however. Sarkisian's parochial interests appear to have been at least as much in play as economic and security considerations. The haste with which his administration is holding accession talks with the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan and its reluctance to seek significant Russian concessions in the process suggest that he is driven at least in part by a deep sense of personal insecurity.

To read the full story

Copyright (c) 2013. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Armenian U-Turn On EU Not As 'Objective' As Thought

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