UPI Intelligence Watch
Sept 30, 2004

By John C.K. Daly and Martin Sieff

The Caucasus, since the end of the Cold War a scene of rivalry
between Russia and the United States, has another foreign player. The
U.K. Ministry of Defense and Armenia's Ministry of Defense have
concluded a memorandum of understanding on defense contacts and
cooperation. Armenian Minister of Defense Serzh Sarkisyan and
the British Ambassador to Armenia Thorda Abbott-Watt signed the
memorandum in Yerevan at the Armenian Ministry of Defense. The
memorandum aims is to further strengthen relations between the two
ministries and increase cooperation in defense matters. Since 2003,
the United Kingdom has sponsored a variety of training courses outside
Armenia for 16 members of the Armenian Armed Forces, including the
first Armenian cadet ever to attend the Royal Military Academy at
Sandhurst. The British Ministry of Defense also funds English-language
courses under the Peacekeeping English Program run by the British
Council Armenia at the Armenian Ministry of Defense. The MOU will
put existing cooperation programs on a formal footing, enabling the
United Kingdom and Armenia to develop further contacts in areas such
as defense management in democratic societies, language training,
peacekeeping, humanitarian operations and arms control.