Assistant to U.S. President for National Security Affairs (NSA) John Bolton offered Armenia to buy American weaponry instead of Russian. Bolton visited Azerbaijan on October 24, where he met President Ilham Aliyev and highlighted the importance of Azerbaijan's role in the global energy market.
Meeting with Acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Thursday, Bolton offered the United States' support to the new government of Armenia and, while touting the upcoming snap parliamentary elections, he said that Pashinyan's apparent victory in the polls would grant him the mandate needed to take the steps necessary to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Thus, if Yerevan adheres to US sanctions against Iran, Armenia would have only Georgia as a neighboring trading partner - raising concerns in Yerevan about how Russian pressure against Tbilisi would impact Armenia.
Relations with Iran, a key neighbor of Armenia, were also on the agenda of Bolton's talks with Pashinian.
"I think the resolution of the conflict would obviously not only benefit Armenia and Azerbaijan, but also the USA", he said. If it was easy, it would have been solved long ago.
"I think there are many alternatives, including in the sphere of arms sells, We have restrictions regarding sell of weapons to Armenia and Azerbaijan. These will be discussed during the visit of the co-chairs to the region", Mammadyarov said.
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Before traveling to Armenia, Bolton visited Russian Federation and Azerbaijan this week.
In this context he noted that the American equipment is better than Russian in any case.
He said that's why he "stressed" to Pashinian, in advance, that the Trump administration is "going to enforce these sanctions very vigorously" and that the Armenian-Iranian border is "going to be a significant issue".
"This is a region that is strategically important to the United States".
"I am happy to be in Armenia to underscore the importance of our bilateral relations and to address a broad range of issues concerning these relations and the region".