WPS Agency, Russia
DEFENSE and SECURITY (Russia)
October 31, 2008 Friday



FORTIFICATION OF BULWARK

by Andrei Korbut

RUSSIA ENHANCES ITS MILITARY PRESENCE IN THE CAUCASUS; Russia may
establish another military base in Armenia.

President Dmitry Medvedev made a two-day official visit to
Armenia. Moscow views Yerevan as a strategic ally. Given the new
geopolitical realities and namely the Georgian aggression against
South Ossetia and establishment of two independent republics in the
region, there were matters of common interest for leaders of Russia
and Armenia to discuss.

The presidents discussed the advancement of economic and
military-technical cooperation, situation in the Caucasus, and
Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement. Toting up his visit, Medvedev
said Moscow was ready for even closer cooperation (with Armenia -
Voyenno-Promyshlenny Kurier) within the framework of the CIS
Collective Security Treaty Organization.

Russia intends to strengthen its military base in Armenia. Some media
outlets reported Moscow's plans to establish another military base in
this country in 2010. What information is available at this point
indicates that the second military base will be established in the
environs of Ijevan, a town near the borders with Azerbaijan and
Georgia. Its personnel will wield heavy military hardware, mobile
artillery pieces, and other weapons. A medium-range radar may be
installed there as well, so that Russia will know the state of affairs
in the airspace above the southern part of the Caucasus. Neither the
Russian nor the Armenian military confirmed this information. Military
experts in the meantime suspect that there may be something to it
because Georgian aggression against South Ossetia convinced the
Kremlin of the necessity to enhance Russian military presence in the
region.

Source: Voyenno-Promyshlenny Kurier, No 43, October 29 - November 4,
2008, p. 3