Armenia seeks to replace Russia’s radar in Azerbaijan
Armenia seeks to host a Russian radar in order to benefit from a dispute between Moscow and Baku over the Gabala missile defense radar system.
“If Russia fails to agree with Azerbaijan on the lease of Gabala, Armenia is ready to provide a site on its territory for construction of the radar,” Russian daily Kommersant quoted Armenian Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan as saying on April 4, according to Russian news agency Ria Novosti.
“There may even be advantages, because Armenia is a mountainous country. Coverage can be broader,” Sargsyan said. Russia has been in talks with Azerbaijan to extend the lease of the Soviet-era radar, which it has been operating in line with a 2002 deal. The current agreement is due to expire in December 2012.
The daily reported in late February that Azerbaijan had demanded Russia pay $300 million instead of the previously agreed $7 million for the lease, which Russia is seeking to extend until 2025.