The Canadian government announced the decision last week, saying that it wants to deepen Armenian-Canadian relations in view of the ongoing “profound geopolitical shift” in the world resulting, in large measure, from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. A government statement said the diplomatic presence in Armenia as well as four Eastern European states will help Ottawa “counter Russia’s destabilizing activities.”
Reacting to the development, the Russian Embassy in Yerevan said: “One is surprised by such an overtly arrogant and dismissive attitude towards a state with which they seem to be going to strengthen bilateral ties. One cannot but wonder how such a line will affect the well-being and security of the Armenian people.”
In a statement, the embassy said it is indicative of the West’s “arrogant attitude towards other countries and peoples that underlies many tragic events taking place in the modern world.”
Like other Western powers, NATO member Canada has strongly condemned the Russian invasion and provided Ukraine with military and economic assistance. By contrast, Armenia has refrained from criticizing the “special military operation” launched by Russian President Vladimir Putin on February 24.
The South Caucasus state has long maintained close military, political and economic ties with Russia. Its heavy dependence on Moscow for defense and security deepened further after the 2020 war in Nagorno-Karabakh.
The Armenian government welcomed the planned opening of the Canadian embassy in Yerevan, with Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan calling it “another milestone in progressively developing Armenian-Canadian relations.”