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Eurasian Union Meeting In Yerevan ‘Not Cancelled’


Armenia - The prime ministers of Eurasian Economic Union member states meet in Yerevan, April 30, 2019

An upcoming meeting in Yerevan of the prime ministers of former Soviet republics making up the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) will go ahead as planned despite the continuing hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh, the Armenian Foreign Ministry said on Monday.

Flight Radar24, a website tracking international flights, reported earlier in the day that a special Russian plane catering for high-ranking government and security officials has landed in Yerevan.

The Armenian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Anna Naghdalian, did not deny the arrival of the Ilyushin-96 plane reportedly belonging to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s administration.

Naghdalian told RFE/RL’s Armenian service that high-level EEU meetings are always preceded by preparations done by teams of relevant officials from Russia and other member states. She said they deal with diplomatic protocol, security and other practical modalities of such gatherings.

Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has yet to formally confirm his participation in the Yerevan meeting scheduled for Friday.

Like other major world powers, Russia has expressed serious concern over the fighting around Karabakh, which broke out on September 27, and repeatedly called for an end to it. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has repeatedly spoken with his Armenian and Azerbaijani counterparts over the past week.

Also, Putin has had three phone conversations with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian since September 27. But he has still not spoken with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev or Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday that Putin does not yet have “clear-cut plans” to contact Aliyev or Erdogan. “But we are talking about a war, and, of course, the situation in Karabakh is developing rapidly,” Peskov told reporters in Moscow. “So it’s hard to make forecasts on this.”

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