Arthur G Martirosyan - Impressions of Canadian Amb. Interview | More Concessions by Pashinyan | EU Resolution for Armenia | Systemic Corruption | Ep 318 - Mar 18, 2024 [EP318]

Posted on Tuesday, Mar 19, 2024 | Category: Armenia, Artsakh, Politics | Series: wir



  • Reactions to Interview with Canadian Ambassador
  • More Concessions Signaled by Pashinyan
  • EU Parliament Resolution on Armenia
  • Fish Rots from the Head

Episode 318 | Recorded: March 18, 2024

Show Notes

Reaction to Interview with Canadian Ambassador

Hovik, Asbed, and Arthur talk about the Canadian ambassador’s interview with Groong.

Last week we published a lengthy interview with the new Canadian Ambassador to Armenia, Andrew Turner. We checked, and it seems to be the most comprehensive interview with the ambassador to date and goes beyond the traditional formalities. For those who want to listen to the hour-long interview, just look up episode 316 on your Youtube, Spotify, or any other channel where Groong exists.

Asbed, given that the interview is still fresh on our minds, and Arthur appears to have listened to it as well, I wanted to see if we could reflect a little bit on what was communicated. Canada is a major country, part of the G20, and has a significant Armenian diaspora. The orientation of Canada vis-a-vis Armenia is therefore important.

We covered multiple topics:

  • Motivation for the opening of the embassy
  • EU Monitoring Mission in Armenia (of which Canada is part of, as a non-EU country)
  • Political Prisoners in Armenia
  • Canadian Military Supplies to Turkey

Discuss the interview.

More Concessions Signaled By Pashinyan

The government uses a manipulative language saying that no territory that belongs to the Republic of Armenia will be handed over to Azerbaijan. Of course, they don’t mention the second part, that they consider those villages Azerbaijani anyway, and those according-to-them “Azerbaijani” villages ARE going to be given.

Tavush Region Details

One major problem is that when you go from Iran to Georgia the main strategic communications artery that you can use passes right through those villages. In fact, based on Google maps, you “enter” and “exit” Azerbaijan 5 times going through that artery. On top of that, the main part of the Russian gas pipeline goes through those territories Pashinyan intends to hand over.

Energy Distribution

This looks like the Goris-Kapan fiasco all over again, when Armenia claimed that nothing was handed over. Then officially Pashinyan recognized a few villages along Goris-Kapan as Azeri, using the names like Eyvazli and Chaizami. Then Azerbaijanis put up signs on that road, then one day there was a checkpoint. Then Azerbaijanis started charging customs duty from Iranian trucks while allowing Armenians to pass through with Russian peacekeeper escort. And then one final day, they closed off the road completely.

We also remember what Azerbaijan does to gas once Armenians cede the pipelines to them. See “Lachin corridor”, and “ethnic cleansing”.

According to Shahin Mustafayev, this is all planned to happen BEFORE the actual delimitation process begins. FM Mirzoyan confirmed that Azerbaijan intends to give up nothing in exchange: none of the Armenian territories that they currently occupy, nor does it plan to agree on the terms for a delimitation process.


  • The delimitation and demarcation process can be called one large negotiation. Have you ever seen a negotiation where one of the parties gives so many concessions, before the negotiations even begin?
  • What dangers does this process carry?

Another thing Pashinyan signaled in his press conference last Monday was that if peace is reached, then it is possible that Armenia may withdraw its international legal claims against Azerbaijan, based on reciprocity. The blockade of Artsakh is one of the claims in the ICJ I believe. There are many similar cases.

Some of the cases are on behalf of Artsakhtsis.


  • What are your thoughts about the potential of this happening?

EU Parliament Resolution On Armenia

Last Wednesday, the EU Parliament passed a resolution that hailed Armenia’s “change of foreign policy”, and praised its effective freezing of participation in the CSTO. It also said that should Armenia desire “candidate status” for EU membership, and if it continues on the path to democratic reforms, the request for candidacy should be considered by the EU. There are reports that Pashinyan’s government plans to submit a membership bid before the end of 2024.

Pashinyan was quick to welcome the EU Resolution.

In light of many countries recently reiterating that neither the US, nor the EU, nor France, will do, or can do, anything to save Armenia in case of an Azeri or Turkish attack, it’s not clear what this non-binding resolution will do for Armenia, besides further pissing off Russia. And they are pissed, they just issued a warning about “irreparable damage” being done to relations between the countries.


  • Can the Russian-Armenian relations be fixed at this point?
  • What can the EU do for Armenia’s security? Can Armenia shoot democracy bullets at Azerbaijan if they attack? Or throw resolutions at them?

Fish Rots from the Head

A month ago we discussed the extensive campaign fraud committed by Civil Contract and Tigran Avinyan, during the September 2023 Yerevan municipal elections, which was reported by The bombshell allegations about fake political campaign contributions was called “unprecedented” by even western watchdogs. And earlier this month Pashinyan’s handpicked prosecutor general, Anna Vardapetyan, dismissed Infocom’s extensive and investigative report saying that “there was no evidence of financial irregularities.”

Right on the heels of this refusal to investigate and demand accountability, new investigative reports have come to light, this time from and the international Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) that Civil Contract did in fact extensively violate Armenian laws on elections and campaign funding.


  • Civil Contract’s questionable campaign tactics have been exposed in Armenian opposition media before. Do you think western-funded agencies just discovered that there is corruption in Armenia?
  • Why is The West so resistant to holding Pashinyan and entourage accountable for undemocratic, in fact downright autocratic, practices?

Topics from the Panelists

  • Hovik - Don’t pay attention to videos of Arayik Harutyunyan and Levon Mnatsakanyan from Baku. They are coerced and possibly under torture. Do not share, do not distribute.
  • Arthur - 150th Anniversary of Russian writer Nikolai Berdyaev, who helps you understand Russians better.
  • Asbed - Russia vs. West is an intercivilizational fight for resources.


That’s our Week in Review, we hope you found it helpful. We invite your feedback and your suggestions, you can find us on most social media and podcast platforms. Thanks to Laura Osborn for the music on our podcasts.


Arthur G. Martirosyan

Arthur G. Martirosyan

Arthur G. Martirosyan, who is a Senior Consultant with CM Partners. In 1994, after graduating from Yale University, he joined Conflict Management Group and Harvard Negotiation Project, and has since worked on conflicts in the former Soviet Union, the Middle East, the Balkans, Africa, and Latin America.


Hovik Manucharyan

Hovik Manucharyan

Hovik Manucharyan is an information security engineer who moved from Seattle to Armenia in 2022. He co-founded the ANN/Groong podcast in 2020 and has been a contributor to Groong News since the late 1990s.

Disclaimer: The views expressed by Hovik Manucharyan on the ANN/Groong podcast are his own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of his employer or any other organization.

Asbed Bedrossian

Asbed Bedrossian

Asbed is founder of the Armenian News Network Groong and co-founder of the ANN/Groong podcast.

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