Monday, September 4, 2023


As was expected, Vladimir Putin wasn't impressed. 

Translation: Russia, according to Putin, was "simply forced" to withdraw from the grain deal: the West continues to block its implementation in terms of Russian agricultural exports, and also, to put it mildly, deceived Moscow about the main goal of the agreements. In addition, the President of the Russian Federation noted that Ukraine used the humanitarian corridors in the Black Sea "for terrorist attacks against Russian civilian military facilities": "This cannot be tolerated any longer." Putin refuted allegations of a rise in food prices due to Russia's withdrawal from the agreements: "Obviously, the termination of the deal did not affect the global food markets. <...> Grain prices continue to decline, there is no physical shortage of food." At the same time, Moscow is “ready to consider the possibility of reviving the grain deal,” but only after the restrictions on its own agricultural exports are lifted, the Russian leader noted. Turkey, together with the UN, has prepared a "new package of proposals" to resume the deal, Erdogan said. "I believe that in the near future we will be able to find a solution that will meet Turkey's expectations," he added.

About highlighted: sure, sure, but only after it will meet Russia's expectations. So, no grain deal "extension" and Putin was explicit explaining why. 

In other news, Mr. Pashinyan works hard to finish off Russian-Armenian relations and this time even Russian Foreign Ministry was forced to react:

Translation: "Moscow is extremely dissatisfied with the latest public statements of the Armenian leadership, including the statements of the Prime Minister of Armenia in an interview with the Italian newspaper La Repubblica and the comment of the Armenian Foreign Ministry on August 31, they regard them as unacceptable in tone and content," the agency's interlocutor said. 

There are many venues through which wide swaths of Armenia's population try to commit suicide--the roles of French and US Armenian diasporas are of special interest here--but it is not an accident that the second largest US Embassy in the world, after Baghdad, is in Yerevan. One may ask what's deal with that, in the country with a population of barely 2.8 million and with virtually no resources. The answer is simple--Armenian diaspora, which is very influential. Most, not all, though, especially many Armenians living in Russia, of Armenian diaspora don't care about Russia and want Armenia fully incorporated into the "Western" fold. 

Russia has a 102nd military base in Gyumri in Armenia and there are still some significant portions of Armenian population who are closely connected to Russia in social, economic, cultural and family senses but Armenian "elites" are generally pro-Western and anti-Russian. That complicates Russian-Armenian relations, especially after the reaction of Russian Armenian diaspora to the war in Nagorny Karabakh and a serious backlash by Russians in Russian social media to that. So, it is complicated and Armenia is infested with Western NGOs which doesn't make things, always complex, any easier. In the end, Pashinyan enjoys a wide support in Armenia and he is a full-blown US asset. 

Of course, one should not forget a complex factor of Armenia's ally, Iran, here, but that is a whole other story altogether. Armenia will be used by the US to sabotage North-South Corridor and any kind of the solution in Caucasus and Moscow understands that and made her position clear on many occasions. Armenians, meanwhile, remain a torn nation spread all over the word with diasporas living anywhere from Syria and France, to US and Russia. Russian Armenian diaspora numbers, by different estimates, the size of the population of Armenia proper and many of Armenians left a profound mark in Russia's history and served historic Russia with honor and dignity.

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