Staunton, June 5 – Fifty percent of Armenians support to one extent or another having their country join a union state with Russia and Belarus, but 37 percent are opposed. At the same time, 38 percent say they favor having Armenia join NATO, while 26 percent say they are against that move, according to a Caucasus Research Resource Center poll.
This CRRC finding highlights just how divided Armenian society is regarding any turn toward or away from Moscow, but another result of the same poll may be even more suggestive. It finds that far fewer Armenians see Russia as their best friend now than nine years ago and far more see France in that role (arminfo.info/full_news.php?id=69880).
In 2013, 83 percent of Armenians said that Russia was their country’s best friend; now only 35 percent do. Over the same period, the fraction of Armenians declaring France their best friend rose from four percent to 36 percent. In 2013, four percent of Armenians said that their country had no friends; now, 18 percent make that declaration.
At the other end of this spectrum, the share of Armenians calling Turkey and Azerbaijan hostile countries has fallen to a combined 46 percent. Nine years ago, 66 percent of Armenians held Azerbaijan to be an enemy, and 28 percent said that of Turkey, significant but opposite moves in the two cases.
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