No US pressure over relations with Iran, claims Armenian PM

Armenia’s prime minister, Nikol Pashinyan, has said that the United States is not placing any pressure on Armenia over its close relations with its neighbour Iran, RFE/RL’s Armenian service has reported.

Speaking in an interview with French-Armenian magazine Nouvelles d’Armenie, Mr Pashinyan said that the US “seemed to have gotten a good grasp of the issue. They have started to understand that Iran is one thing for Washington and another for Armenia.”

“At the moment we are not subject to any pressure,” he added.

Despite previous warnings from US national security advisor John Bolton, who claimed that trade along the Iranian-Armenian border would become “a significant issue,” the Armenian PM vowed to strengthen “not only economic, but political ties,” with Iran.

On September 2, Armenian news agency Armenpress reported that Mr Pashinyan had confirmed his support for joint energy projects between the two countries.

In early August, the US Commerce Department introduced sanctions against two Armenian companies for illegally exporting “sensitive items” to Iran.

The US government reimposed sanctions on Iran after US President Donald Trump decided to abandon an international agreement in 2018 aimed at blocking Iran’s nuclear aspirations.