"Photographs of the Arbat volunteer battalion taking part in a send-off ceremony at the Armenian Church in Moscow on July 2, 2023 are circulating on the Internet. It is assumed that in this battalion, along with the citizens of Armenia, there are also ethnic Armenians from Abkhazia occupied by the Russian Federation," ISW said.
The American Institute for the Study of War (ISW) in its new report on the assessment of the Russian offensive campaign notes that Russia is sending a recently formed Armenian volunteer battalion to Ukraine.
"Photographs of the Arbat volunteer battalion taking part in a send-off ceremony at the Armenian Church in Moscow on July 2, 2023 are circulating on the Internet. (https://t.me/az_front/16132 ). It is assumed that in this battalion, along with the citizens of Armenia, there are also ethnic Armenians from Abkhazia occupied by the Russian Federation," ISW said. In this way, citizens of Armenia and Armenians from Abkhazia are preparing to kill Ukrainians on Ukrainian soil. Who helps them in this?
First of all, it is the state leadership of Armenia. We remind you that the Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan this year attended the Victory Day celebration in Moscow. When Ukraine called the act "immoral and unfriendly," Pashinyan told a party meeting that he had made the right decision stemming from Armenia's vital interests. He reminded that Armenia receives natural gas from Russia, which is Yerevan's strategic partner.
Also, Pashinyan has said that his possible refusal to participate in the parade in Moscow would be a "dangerous adventure". In addition, Pashinyan has told his fellow party members that in the event of Russia's loss in Ukraine, "Armenia faces the loss of its independence."
But Armenia's independence is still very conditional. And the issue is not only in the presence of a Russian military base in Gyumri, but also in the fact that the Russian side guards the Armenian-Turkish and Armenian-Iranian borders. Summing up all this, we come to the conclusion that sending citizens of the Republic of Armenia to war against Ukraine could not have happened without the consent of Pashinyan.
Secondly, the Armenian diaspora in Russia is also active in anti-Ukrainian activities. In Ukraine, they can clearly see how cave-like is the anti-Ukrainian position of such Kremlin propagandists of Armenian origin as Margarita Simonyan, Tigran Keosayan, Roman Babayan and Semyon Baghdasarov. But we also have the head of the Union of Armenians in Russia - Ara Abrahamyan. He is less known to the Ukrainian public, but he is an obedient executor of any orders from the Kremlin. And he has always taken an anti-Ukrainian position, justifying the war waged by the Russian Federation against Ukraine. For him, as people say, the sanction database of "Peacemaker" is crying.
There, by the way, the name of the Armenian-Russian oligarch Ruben Vardanyan stands out. The government of Ukraine imposed sanctions on him as early as October 2022. The former GRU colonel - Igor Strelkov (Girkin), who in 2014 led the sabotage operations in Donbas, made a very interesting admission about Vardanyan's past. He reported that Vardanyan is one of the sponsors of the former head of the so-called "DNR" ("Donetsk People's Republic"), and today - a member of the State Duma of Russia - Alexander Boroday - one of the Ukrainian collaborators responsible for inciting separatism in Donbas and the annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Therefore, it is not excluded that Vardanyan is also connected with the creation of the Armenian volunteer battalion "Arbat", which is blessed by the Armenian church in Moscow to kill Ukrainians. That by participating in such a shameful action, the [Armenian] church also encouraged the crimes against Ukraine, it is even unnecessary to add. We can only hope that the state leadership of Ukraine and the Ukrainian public will remember all these facts.