Did Russia Pressure Iran to Block Indian Arms to Armenia?

Did Russia Pressure Iran to Block Indian Arms to Armenia?

Yerevan, Armenia – A cloud of suspicion hangs over Iran's role in potentially obstructing the shipment of Indian howitzer artillery systems to Armenia. This comes as Armenia embarks on a crucial military modernization program following heavy artillery losses in the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

Former Armenian lawmaker Gayane Abrahamyan's claims that Russia might be pressuring Iran to impede the shipment have sparked concern. While unverified, her allegations highlight the potential influence of geopolitical maneuvers on Armenia's ability to strengthen its defenses.

Adding to the intrigue, analyst Tatul Hakobyan suggests a Russian company initially agreed to supply launch vehicles, possibly linked to the Indian howitzers, but later withdrew, with Iran allegedly stepping in as a replacement.

Iran's ambassador to Armenia, while not directly addressing the howitzer shipment, stressed the importance of a robust Armenian military for regional stability. This ambiguity leaves open the question of whether Iran truly supports the Indian arms deal.

Despite these complexities, India appears committed to fulfilling its agreement with Armenia, with ongoing deliveries reported.

Armenia's Urgent Need for Modernization​

Armenia's military is undergoing a significant transformation, particularly its artillery divisions. This urgency stems from the estimated loss of hundreds of artillery pieces during the 2020 conflict.

To replace these outdated Soviet-era systems, Armenia is turning to India's advanced howitzers – the Advanced Towed Artillery Gun System (ATAGS) and the Multi-terrain Artillery Gun (MArG).

ATAGS and MArG: Boosting Armenian Firepower​

The ATAGS offers superior firepower and range, while the MArG prioritizes maneuverability on Armenia's challenging terrain due to its wheeled chassis.

In 2023, Armenia signed a significant deal to acquire 72 MArG units and 84 ATAGS units, becoming the sole announced customer for the ATAGS system thus far.

A Geopolitical Chessboard?​

Armenia's pursuit of modern weaponry underscores its commitment to rebuilding its military after the 2020 conflict.

However, the potential involvement of Iran and Russia in the howitzer shipment deal exposes the interplay between international arms deals and complex regional politics.

While the exact nature of Iran's actions remains unclear, the allegations raise questions about the true extent of their support for Armenia's military modernization efforts, particularly in light of Russia's perceived influence.

The incorporation of India's advanced artillery systems promises a significant boost to Armenia's defensive capabilities. Whether these systems will be delivered unimpeded remains to be seen.
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Then what is NATO? It's a permanent treaty on defence with gives them permanent friends.
During covid, USA diverted some ships with medical supplies meant for EU NATO members to itself... Google it... some EU countries at a time wanted to have its own Military alliance outside NATO. Turkey and NATO have differences. In libya, turkish military assets were attacked by egypt and france... Forget that far... Before Ukraine war, putin invite imran to moscow... Dumb putin did not know that ISI calls shots in pak not PM... putin tried to use imran to warn India, though it proved counter productive when pak started supplying shells to ukraine...
Or Russia is a junior partner of China? And China is controlling both?
Russia is an equal-ish, albeit slightly junior partner to China. In fact, if I had to draw an analogy, China would be Germany, and Russia would be Japan in the late 1930s. Both extremely powerful in their own right, and while China (Germany) arguably had a slight superiority, the Axis Pact was a pact of equals with Germany (China) and Japan (Russia) being allies with different priorities and a set of grievances between themselves.

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