17 Dec 2018 20:45

Armenia says honors commitments in biological laboratory researches

YEREVAN. Dec 17 (Interfax) - Cooperation in sanitary and epidemiological monitoring is part of bilateral agenda of ties between Armenia and Russia, spokesperson of the Armenian Foreign Ministry Anna Nagdalyan said.

"From the context we understand that this is biological laboratories. Cooperation in sanitary and epidemiological monitoring is part of our bilateral agenda [with Russia]. Armenia honors all of its international commitments seeking the peaceful use of scientific developments in the area of bacteriology," Nagdalyan told Interfax on Monday in comments on Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's statement.

Moscow and Yerevan are preparing a document, which will guarantee the absence of foreign troops in Armenia, Lavrov said earlier in reply to a question about three U.S. biological laboratories located in Armenia.

"An agreement is being prepared to guarantee the non-deployment of foreign troops and the full transparency of local developments from the angle of the guaranteed absence of threats and risks," Lavrov said.

Russian specialists were admitted to American laboratories, which study biomaterials and are located in Armenia, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said in an interview with Kommersant in September.

"These laboratories are fully controlled by the Armenian authorities. We are ready to cooperate, and Russian specialists have already been there and saw for themselves that these laboratories were nothing to worry about. True, these labs are of very good quality. I think it is very good that we have such quality laboratories," Pashinyan said, while stressing that they "may not be in any way against Russia."

"On the contrary, we invite Russian specialists and are ready to discuss the joint use of these laboratories. They have already been there, and, when they want [to visit them] again, there will be no restrictions," the Armenian prime minister said.