YEREVAN, September 18. / ARKA /. In terms of some types of weapons Armenia is ahead of all its regional neighbors, defense minister Seyran Ohanyan said today.
As an example, he cited Russia-manufactured S-300 air-defense systems saying no country in the region can boast of that number of the system as Armenia. Speaking at a meeting with students of the Yerevan State University the minister downplayed earlier reports that Russia delivered $1 billion worth battle tanks and other military hardware to Azerbaijan. According to reports in the Russian media, Azerbaijani military received over 90 T-90C tanks, around 100 armored personnel carriers and dozens of multiple-rocket systems and artillery cannons. According to Ohanyan, the Armenian side had been notified of the delivery 2-3 months prior to it.
"Each country itself decides the way of its military- technical cooperation with other countries and Armenia has no right to interfere or try to hinder weapon sales, however, we send messages via some organizations that when it comes to Azerbaijan it is unacceptable, especially that Azerbaijan has been turning its defensive capabilities into offensive ones,’ he said.
He stressed that delivery of weapons to regional countries and cooperation with them brings them to a certain degree of control.
"The closer military cooperation between other countries and Azerbaijan, the better our messages reach destination and the democratic norms of control that apply to us will spread to our enemies as well," the minister said.
Earlier this year Armenian prime minister Tigran Sarkisian said the country saw a dramatic increase in its arms acquisitions in the last few years, which have offset Azerbaijan’s ongoing military build-up. “In the last three years we have acquired as much weaponry as we did in the previous 20 years,” Tigran Sarkisian said during a visit to Nagorno-Karabakh. -0-