Chinese army officers are due to start studying in Armenia this year in line with an agreement that was signed by military officials from the two countries in Yerevan on Wednesday.
The Armenian Defense Ministry said the memorandum of understanding signed by one of its high-ranking officials and the Chinese military attaché in Armenia will regulate bilateral cooperation on education.
“That document will enable military servicemen from China to study at Armenia’s institutions of higher education in the academic year 2013-2014,” the ministry said in a statement. It gave no details.
The ministry spokesman, Artsrun Hovannisian, told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) that the Chinese military is primarily interested in graduate programs of Yerevan State University. Hovannisian also could not say whether Chinese cadets or officers could study at Armenia’s military academies.
China has trained several dozen Armenian officers at its military academies since the late 1990s.
The latest arrangement is a further sign of Armenia’s growing defense links with China. The two sides signed a still unpublicized agreement on “military and military-technical cooperation” in January 2012 during a visit to Yerevan by a high-level delegation from the Chinese Defense Ministry.
Several other Chinese military officials visited the Armenian in July 2012 to lecture Armenia’s top army generals on China’s traditional strategies of warfare. They focused to the works of Sun Tzu, an ancient Chinese military general, strategist and philosopher, during a special conference held at the Armenian Defense Ministry.