YEREVAN — Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has criticized the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) for lack of a decision on how to react to Azerbaijan’s aggression against Armenia which is damaging to the image of the organization as he hosted an annual summit of the alliance on Wednesday.
Addressing the leaders of Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan at a meeting in Yerevan, Pashinyan said that during the past two years Armenia has been subjected to at least three instances of aggression from Azerbaijan.
“It is depressing that Armenia’s membership in the CSTO did not deter Azerbaijan from aggressive actions, and it is even more so depressive since, in fact, until this day we have not been able to reach a decision on the CSTO’s reaction to Azerbaijan’s aggression against Armenia,” he said.
Pashinyan said the kind of attitude was “causing huge damage to the CSTO’s image” not only inside Armenia, but also abroad.
“I regard this as the main failure of Armenia’s presidency in the CSTO. The same can be said about the facts of escalation along the border between our allies Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan,” he said.
At the same time, Pashinyan noted Armenia’s “successful actions” as the presiding country in ensuring “the CSTO’s prompt reaction” to the appeal of Kazakhstan’s president to provide support in restoring law and order in his country in January of this year.
“In this case, we resolved the issue overnight, which allowed Kazakhstan to avoid internal chaos,” the Armenian leader stressed.
In his remarks at the summit Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the tripartite meeting between the leaders of Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan in Sochi on October 31 and their joint statement created “a good basis for future compromises” between Yerevan and Baku.
Putin said that “only through consistent implementation of agreements on border delimitation, unblocking of transport links and solutions to humanitarian problems will it be possible to achieve normalization of relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan.”
“We hope that this will eventually pave the way for a peace treaty between Yerevan and Baku,” the Russian president said.
Speaking in Yerevan earlier on Wednesday Stanislav Zas, the outgoing secretary general of the CSTO, said that a draft decision of the Collective Security Council on joint measures to provide assistance to Armenia had, on the whole, been agreed upon. He said it was drafted on the basis of the conclusion and proposals of the CSTO monitoring mission. Zas did not elaborate immediately.
Leaders of the CSTO today also decided that Kazakhstan’s Imangali Tasmagambetov will succeed Belarus’s Zas as secretary general beginning next year.