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Alen Simonyan Says Armenia Considers Importing Natural Gas from Azerbaijan

Alen Simonyan

On Thursday, Alen Simonyan, the parliament speaker of Armenia, suggested that Armenia should explore the possibility of importing natural gas from Azerbaijan. This proposal comes during evolving dynamics in the region, particularly in light of recent territorial concessions made by the current Armenian government to Azerbaijan.

The notion of importing gas from Azerbaijan gained traction after Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev hinted at the possibility of supplying gas to Armenia. President Aliyev's statement came in the wake of territorial gains secured by Azerbaijan from Armenia.

Simonyan expressed optimism regarding the prospect of gas imports from Azerbaijan, describing it as a positive development. He emphasized the need for discussions between the Armenian and Azerbaijani governments to explore this possibility further.

However, Simonyan cautioned that formal discussions on this matter have not yet taken place between the two governments. As a senior member of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s political team, Simonyan acknowledged the need to engage in dialogue with his colleagues regarding the proposal.

Currently, Armenia primarily relies on natural gas imports from Russia, often at prices significantly lower than international market rates. However, the relationship between Armenia and Russia has been strained in recent years, with Armenia increasingly seeking closer ties with Western countries.

Moreover, Armenia's willingness to cede several border areas to Azerbaijan without securing reciprocal territorial concessions has sparked controversy and protests within the country. Critics, including opposition leaders, argue that such concessions pose significant security risks for Armenian communities and the nation as a whole.

In an exclusive interview with The Armenian Report, opposition MP Garnik Danielyan told us from Tavush Province that he’s not surprised by Simonyan’s statements. “This government performs the needs of Azerbaijan and they are not even hiding anymore. Gas is such a small part of what they [Armenian government] are willing to give to Azerbaijan, they are about to give it all to them,” Danielyan warned us.

Nevertheless, Simonyan dismissed opposition concerns, asserting that Azerbaijan would acknowledge the sovereignty of the first small section of the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. This perspective reflects the complexities surrounding Armenia's efforts to navigate its diplomatic relationships and address domestic security concerns amidst shifting geopolitical dynamics.


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