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Armenian sappers in Syria: belated but necessary action

The alleged participation of Armenia in the demining of the territory of Syria, where a bloody civil war has been going on for the fifth year, can raise the military cooperation between Yerevan and Moscow to a new level.

The readiness of Armenia and Serbia to join this format was reported at the end of August by the representative of the Russian Defense Ministry Alexander Novikov. According to him, relevant addresses were sent to the representatives of the defense departments of Iran, Egypt, Serbia, Armenia, Turkey and the UAE. "We are ready to send our units Armenia and Serbia, we are also considering the possibility of attracting Chinese sappers," Novikov told journalists at the "Army-2017" forum.

Commenting on Novikov's statement at the request of one of the Armenian media, the Armenian President's press secretary Vladimir Hakobyan stated the following: "When the decision is made and all questions are clarified, then the public will be notified in the proper order."

As noted in the article on the pages of Dalma News, later the initiative was also reacted in the Ministry of Defense of Armenia. At the request of the publication, it was noted here that last year the department held working discussions with Russian colleagues on the prospects of participating in humanitarian work on demining in Syria.

"Within the framework of these discussions, Armenia expressed its willingness, in the event of the final implementation of such an initiative, of the consent of the Government of Syria and compliance with all international legal procedures, to consider the possibility of its humanitarian demining unit participating in missions in those areas of Syria where military operations are not being conducted. The Defense Ministry of Armenia does not have any information about the formation of the coalition, its composition, and even more so the deployment schedule, "the ministry said.

Despite the absence of any details about the timing of the operation, the scale of Armenia's participation, its willingness to take part in eliminating the consequences of the war in Syria is understandable. In Syria, there are still thousands of Armenians who survived all the horrors of the bloody slaughter.

It is noteworthy that as early as 28 June, Armenian Defense Minister Vigen Sargsyan stated that Armenia does not intend to send troops to Syria in the near future. However, according to the Armenian minister, Yerevan is ready to participate in humanitarian programs.

Despite the existence of a large Armenian community, the Transcaucasian republic for all these years has refrained from any intervention in the Syrian crisis. Thus, in the midst of the fighting for the Armenian-inhabited Syrian city of Kesab in March 2014, when the population left the city in a hurry under the pressure of the rebels of the terrorist organization Jebhat An-Nusra banned in Russia, proposals were sent in Armenian social and political circles to send a peacekeeping contingent there. However, official Yerevan then limited itself to verbal statements such as "the need to consolidate efforts to combat terrorism." The only practical step was the visit to Damascus of a group of Armenian deputies, who were even received by Syrian President Bashar Assad, presenting the situation to them on the spot.

Against the background of such passivity of past years, today's decision to join the Russian initiative is a very sensible and necessary step.

At the same time, if the Armenian state has just decided on some practical measures in the Syrian issue, then Yerevan participates in peacekeeping missions of NATO in Kosovo and Afghanistan with 2008 and 2010. respectively. A small Armenian contingent also participates in a peacekeeping operation under the aegis of the UN in Lebanon, another soldier was sent ... to Mali. The number of peacekeepers is usually not advertised, but it is known that in Kosovo and Lebanon there are about 30 Armenian servicemen in total, and another 120 people are serving in Afghanistan.

It turns out some kind of paradox. While Armenia is helping the Western "partners" to fight the Taliban in far-off Afghanistan, in Syria, terrorists are destroying the Armenian population, blowing up their schools, churches and homes. And it is unlikely that anyone of the highest echelons of power will be able to give an intelligible answer to why the threat looming over the heads of Syrian Armenians is ignored, and defending others, in this case American interests in Central Asia, becomes a priority.

Is it not because behind the destabilization of Syria and the "peacekeeping operation" in Afghanistan are the same forces? It is not difficult to understand what a sharp and unpleasant reaction for Yerevan in the Western capitals would have caused any substantial participation of the Armenian side in the liquidation of the consequences of the war unleashed by the West in Syria. Of course, the military-diplomatic and political potentials of Armenia and Russia are incompatible, and therefore the Transcaucasian republic is much more vulnerable and sensitive to the cries from Washington. And so it is no coincidence that there are no strong opponents of the country's participation in the "peacekeeping mission" in Afghanistan.

But even the hypothetical idea of ​​involving Armenian troops in the Syrian war causes hysteria in a number of media financed by American and European funds. Thus, 1in.am portal, one of the mouthpieces of anti-Russian propaganda in Armenia, writes in connection with the issue of participation in the demining of Syria: "Armenia should avoid, whenever possible, those international operations that could cause human losses in our armed forces. The already exhausting Karabakh war is draining our society and our army. The likely participation of Armenia in the Russian operation in Syria will make not only Armenia, but also our communities in the Middle East, a target for terrorism. And, finally, international processes lead to the collapse of the Russian empire. Armenia in this situation should conduct the most flexible foreign policy, so as not to remain under the ruins. "

According to the logic of 1in.am, the Armenian peacekeepers in Afghanistan, where the Taliban almost blow up NATO soldiers almost every day, and where neighboring Georgia has lost already 30 military personnel, are completely safe, and in Syria they risk being under the blows of Islamists.

Even more amusing is the statement about the threat to the Armenian communities in the Middle East. It is not clear what kind of threat it may be after one of the largest Armenian communities in the Middle East, a community in Syria, as a result of the civil war was almost on the verge of extinction. And the Russian proposal, among other tasks, is also called upon to stop Syria's de-Armenization process.

As for the "collapse of the Russian empire" and the "ruins," unfortunately, for Armenia 1in.am, in any case, in an alliance with Russia "under the ruins" will not remain, but to dismantle the Syrian ruins that have become such with the light hand of Americans and their Middle Eastern satellites, it still has to.

A source: EADaily

Tags: Syria, War in the Middle East, Armenia, Army, Peacekeepers, West, Middle East