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A landmark agreement to deepen the European Union’s relations with Armenia will most likely be signed as planned in November, Germany’s and France’s ambassadors in Yerevan said on Tuesday.

“At the moment there are no circumstances that could hamper that process,” the German envoy, Matthias Kiesler, told a joint news conference with his outgoing French counterpart, Jean-Francois Charpentier.

“I consider the new agreement a great success and believe that if signed, it will open up new and multiple opportunities for deepening EU-Armenia cooperation,” added Kiesler.

Charpentier likewise said that “all prerequisites are in place” for the signing of the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) during an EU summit in Brussels slated for November 24. Armenia would thus become the first member of the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union to have such an “ambitious” deal with the EU, he said.

Armenia - Ambassadors Jean-Francois Charpentier (C) of France and Matthias Kiesler (second from right) of Germany at a press conference in Yerevan, 12Sep2017
Armenia - Ambassadors Jean-Francois Charpentier (C) of France and Matthias Kiesler (second from right) of Germany at a press conference in Yerevan, 12Sep2017

The CEPA, which was finalized in March, is meant to deepen the EU’s political and economic relations with Armenia. It reportedly contains the main political provisions of a more far-reaching Association Agreement which the two sides nearly concluded in 2013.

President Serzh Sarkisian prevented the signing of that agreement with his unexpected decision to seek Armenia’s accession to the EEU. The move was widely attributed to Russian pressure exerted on the Armenian government.

Sarkisian dismissed late last month suggestions that the CEPA may also collapse at the last minute. “We have no reason to not sign that document,” he said.

The head of the EU Delegation in Yerevan, Piotr Switalski, said last week that officials in Brussels are making final preparations for the signing of the accord with Armenia at the November summit.

The summit will focus on the EU’s Eastern Partnership program of closer partnership with six former Soviet republics. Three of them -- Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine -- have signed Association Agreements with the EU.

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