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YEREVAN, OCTOBER 24, ARMENPRESS; Parliament speaker Arthur Baghdasarian received today a delegation of the European Union Troika, who began a week-long visit to the three South Caucasus countries.

The delegation comprises Brian Fall, UK Special Representative to the South Caucasus, Mr. Heikki Talvitie, EU Special Representative to the South Caucasus, Mr. Simon Smith, Head of Eastern Department, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Mr. Kurt Juul, Head of Southern Caucasus and Central Asia Unit, EU Commission, Ms Heidemaria Guerer, representing the incoming Austrian Presidency, Mr. Torben Holtze, Head, Delegation EU Commission to Georgia and Armenia and Mr. Paolo Barroso, Desk Officer for the South Caucasus, Council of the European Community.

Brian Fall was quoted by parliament press office as saying that the EU wants to review recent developments in Armenia and progress in taking forward Armenia’s closer relationship with the EU under the European Neighborhood Policy. Baghdasarian was quoted as saying that development of relations with EU remains Armenia’s foreign policy priority. He also said the EU plans to forge closer political and economic ties with Armenia and finalize bilateral ‘action plan’ under European Neighborhood Policy (ENP) should not be held up by a diplomatic wrangle involving Azerbaijan and Cyprus caused by Baku allowing direct flights from Azerbaijan to the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

Baghdasarian also said that the South Caucasus is perceived as a ” common market,’ and isolation of one of its countries from regional economic projects was inadmissible. He called on EU officials to articulate their position of plans to build a railroad from Turkey to Georgia circumventing Armenia.

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