In a special report entitled, “Peacekeeping Contributor Profile: Armenia,” RSC Director Richard Giragosian authored a study of trends and developments regarding Armenia’s demonstrable commitment to international peacekeeping operations. The report, completed in late November, was commissioned as the 60th country study for an independent research project, “Providing for Peacekeeping,” of the International Peace Institute, the Elliott School at George Washington University, and the Asia Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect at the University of Queensland.
The study analyzed the factors that encourage or discourage states from contributing to UN peacekeeping operations. The research project seeks “to generate and disseminate current information and analysis to support efforts to ‘broaden the base’ of troop- and police-contributing countries, improve the quality of troop and police contributions, and fill key capability gaps.”
An introductory excerpt of the Armenia study notes: “While Armenia has long served as an important Russian ally in the South Caucasus region, it has recently nurtured a closer and more active relationship with NATO and expanded its bilateral military cooperation with key Western countries, including the United States, France, Germany and Italy. This facilitated Armenia’s contributions to Western-led military campaigns in Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. Simultaneously, however, Armenia has continued to demonstrate its role as a loyal and reliable security partner for Russia, and as a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). More recently, Armenia has developed a larger role in peace operations, in part, to help pursue domestic defense reforms and modernization, and in part to forge greater self-sufficiency and gain valuable international experience for its elite peacekeeping battalion. The self-sufficiency stems from Armenia’s expanding capacity to participate in peacekeeping operations separate from its role as a member of the Russian-dominated CSTO and distinct from its security partnership with Russia. In this way, Armenian commitments to peacekeeping missions have tended to bolster the country’s self-sufficiency and self-confidence.”