Russia’s Lavrov says deals barring third country military personnel to be struck with Armenia, Kazakhstan

Russia’s Lavrov says deals barring third country military personnel to be struck with Armenia, Kazakhstan
Sergey Lavrov.
By bne IntelliNews December 19, 2018

Moscow and Yerevan plan to sign an agreement that will bar third countries from deploying military personnel in Armenia, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was quoted as saying on December 19.

A similar deal was planned with Kazakhstan, he added while speaking to Komsomolskaya Pravda radio station.

“We are completing with Armenia the drafting of a document which will guarantee the absence of foreign military personnel there,” Lavrov said. “It will guarantee transparency in terms of threats and risks.”

Both Armenia and Kazakhstan are members of the Russian-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation.

Lavrov made his remarks in response to a question put to him about biological research laboratories donated by the US to Armenia, Georgia and other ex-Soviet states.

The Russian Defence Ministry claimed in October that Washington appeared to be running a clandestine biological weapons lab in Georgia. It stated that the lab posed a security threat to Russia.

It was reported around that time that Yerevan had allowed Russian officials to inspect similar US-funded facilities in Armenia.

Armenia hosts an estimated 4,000 Russian troops as part of its close military ties with Russia.

The Nikol Pashinian-led Armenian government, which took office following a peaceful revolution in May, has pledged to maintain that alliance. It was yet to comment on Lavrov’s statement about the deployment of third-country military personnel. 

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