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Will Russia launch a “gas attack” on the South Caucasus?

By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, January 14
Due to a leakage of gas and consequent fire on the Russia-Armenia pipeline there was a delay of several days in transiting Russian natural gas to Armenia. Some Armenian analysts drew a parallel between this situation and the Russia-Ukraine “gas war”.

Political analyst Ervand Bozoian suggests this is not necessarily the case, and considers the similarity of circumstances might be a pure coincidence. If the promised gas delivery dates are not kept to new conclusions could be drawn. Fellow analyst Manvel Sarkisian however does not exclude that the pumping of natural gas to Armenia was deliberately stopped by Russia to create problems between Armenia and Georgia. If there are some complications in Ukraine Russia can start some complication in Georgia too.

The analyst is challenging the statements by the Georgian authorities that its natural gas supply is not dependent on Russian gas. Another commentator, Tatul Manaselian, thinks it less possible that Russia would repeat the Ukrainian scenario in the Caucasus because Armenia and Russia are strategic partners.

In principle Gazprom can cut the natural gas supply to Armenia via Georgia and supply it from Iran. In this case Georgia would have problems as it is receiving free gas as a transit payment and certain enterprises will suffer. However this would not be catastrophic for the population as sufficient natural gas enters Georgia via Azerbaijan.