UPI INtelligence Watch...

United Press International
June 1 2005

On May 3 Uzbekistan announced it was withdrawing from the
Georgia-Ukraine-Uzbekistan-Azerbaijan-Moldova pact, known informally
as GUUAM. Now Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian says Armenia
may consider joining GUAM (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Moldova)
if it receives an official invitation proposal. Oskanian made his
observation in response to a comment by Ukrainian parliamentary
Speaker Vladimir Litvin that other countries, including Armenia,
may join GUAM. Oskanian sounded a cautious note, remarking, "Before
joining any organization one should study its goals and principles
of activity" even as he noted "GUAM is currently reconsidering its
goals and principles." Only two months ago Oskanian ruled out Armenia
facilitating its ties with GUUAM or seeking observer status in the
organization. In late 2000 Oskanian harshly criticized GUUAM, stating
that the grouping "negatively affects the integration processes in
the CIS," noting then that all GUUAM member states were represented
in the CIS and that "nothing hinders them from solving problems
of economic integration within the framework the Commonwealth of
Independent States."