On March 14, Media Center hosted a press conference-discussion on the issues of potential membership to the Eurasian Union and the possibility of resuming the exploitation of the Abkhazian railway. The invited guests were Prosperous Armenia Party spokesman Tigran Urikhanyan and deputy-director of Caucasus Institute Sergey Minasyan.
The discussion was held in the highlight of president Serzh Sargsyan’s visit to the Russian Federation, which expert Minasyan qualified as “important for future relations”. The potential re-exploitation of the Abkhazian railway was most probably among the things discussed during the visit.
“The Abkhazian president’s and incument prime-minister’s presence in Moscow during Serzh Sargsyan’s visit was not coincidental, of course, however the political elite of Abkhazia and the society are very caucious when it comes to this issue, for understandable reasons,” said Minasyan, adding that Armenia “has assumed an important role of a mediator” in Russia-Georgia relations.
Resumption of the Abkhazian railway would be beneficial to Armenia not only in terms of economy, but also politically, “since for the first time a communication would be restored in the post-soviet territory that was closed because of the bloody confrontation, and it might set an important precident,” Minasyan shared his insight.
In reference to the president’s visit and the possible membership to the Eurasian Union, Minasyan said that the Eurasian Union remains to be an idea yet, while the Customs Union and the opportunities it offers might be of practical importance to Armenia.
PAP spokesman Tigran Urikhanyan also stressed that the Eurasian Union is still at the discussion stage, hence “we should first wait until it becomes a reality”.
“We are granted an opportunity to take part in those discussions, especially that there is no word about an interstate union yet and for now it's only a process of territorial integration. Our participation in such processes is a good chance to represent the interests of our country; it’s another negotiation platform also for raising and discussing our issues,” said MP Urikhanyan.
He believes that “given the new reality formed in Georgia, the transition of Russia-Georgia relations to a new stage would have a positive impact on the economy of Armenia”.
“In the past an attempt to resume the Abkhazian railway communication was made also in 2002-2003, but failed. The situation now is more favorable with greater chances for success,” said Urikhanyan.
You can watch the whole recording of the press conference by following this links.