Adviser to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Anton Herashchenko shared a recording on Twitter from the Kremlinpool RIA profile. It shows the heads of state of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which is called “Russian NATO”.
The CSTO brings together in a military alliance some of the member countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, originating from the former Soviet republics. It has been operating since 2002 on the basis of the Tashkent Treaty signed a decade earlier, and currently its members are: the Republic of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Tajikistan and the Russian Federation.
SEE: Conflict in the Caucasus. Putin talked with the Prime Minister of Armenia about the situation on the border with Azerbaijan
The recording from the camera behind Vladimir Putin, sitting at the round table in the hall, captured the moment when the Prime Minister of Armenia, Nikol Pashinian, thanked the gathered, while refusing to sign an important declaration.
The film also shows the reaction of the host of the Kremlin to these words, who in an ostentatious gesture throws a pen on the documents. The behavior of Alyaksandr Lukashenko, who is sitting to the side, is even more telling – he spread his arms and assumed a surprised posture, and a look of surprise appeared on his face.
“Nikol Pashinyan refused to sign the declaration after the Summit of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). In fact, this means the complete disintegration of the CSTO. Putin dropped his pen, Lukashenka in shock,” Herashchenko wrote.
Another clash occurred during the CSTO summit in Yerevan. As the heads of the member states lined up for a commemorative photo next to the flags of their countries, the Russian president took the center stage.
However, none of the representatives present – including the closest Prime Minister of Armenia – wanted to be photographed next to Vladimir Putin. The video of the incident also made its way online. It shows the guests invited to the summit, who make sure that they have kept the right distance to the increasingly lonely leader on the world stage.
“Look at the Prime Minister of Armenia Pashinyan, who is doing everything to stay as far away from Putin as possible. And Putin knows it too. He put salt on the wounds and at the meeting of the security bloc allegedly led by Russia,” Bakti Nishanov of the US Helsinki Commission wrote on Twitter.
CSTO summit without agreement. The Prime Minister of Armenia surprised the gathered
Pashinyan accused the Moscow-led security group on Wednesday of failing to protect his country in the face of aggression from its archenemy, Azerbaijan.
Yerevan accuses Azerbaijan of seizing a patch of its land seized in September in fierce clashes between neighbors that left more than 280 dead.
SEE: Caucasus. Exchange of fire on the border of Azerbaijan and Armenia
“So far we have not been able to make a decision on the reaction of the CSTO to Azerbaijan’s aggression against Armenia,” Pashinyan said at the summit of the organization’s heads of state, which was also attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin.-
The Prime Minister stated that “it is regrettable that Armenia’s membership in the CSTO has not stopped the onslaught of Azerbaijan.” “This act greatly damages the image of the CSTO both in our country and abroad,” Pashinyan added, quoted by AFP.
Pashinyan refused to sign the declaration of CSTO members. He explained why
In September, Armenia asked for military assistance from Moscow, which is bound by the treaty to defend Armenia in the event of a foreign invasion. But the Kremlin – which also has close ties to Baku – was slow to help Yerevan.
The head of the Armenian government explained that due to these failures he was not ready “to sign these documents”.
SEE: Azerbaijan shelled Armenia. 49 Armenian soldiers died
Pashinyan and Putin are scheduled to meet for talks on Wednesday. Armenia expects the CSTO to accelerate the necessary political and diplomatic work with Azerbaijan to ensure the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Azerbaijani troops from the sovereign territory of the Republic of Armenia to their original positions as of May 11, 2021.
The country’s prime minister stressed that such a stance is important not only for restoring the territorial integrity of the Republic of Armenia, but also for stopping Azerbaijan from further aggressive actions against our country, reports ARKA.
Karab conflict. Russia was supposed to be the guarantor of peace
Armenia and Azerbaijan fought two wars – in the 1990s and 2020 – over the Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh in Azerbaijan. Six weeks of fighting in autumn 2020 claimed the lives of more than 6,500 soldiers from both sides and ended in a truce brokered by Russia.
As part of the deal, Armenia ceded swathes of territory it had controlled for decades, and Moscow sent around 2,000 Russian peacekeepers to oversee a fragile truce. Ethnic Armenian separatists from Nagorno-Karabakh broke away from Azerbaijan when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. About 30,000 people died as a result of the conflict.