Armenia cancels military drills, widening rift with Moscow

YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Armenia’s prime minister says his country has refused to host military drills planned by a Russia-dominated security pact. Nikol Pashinyan’s announcement on Tuesday reflected Armenia’s growing tensions with Moscow. Pashinyan has repeatedly criticized Russian peacekeepers for a failure to secure free transit along a corridor linking Armenia and the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh. Azerbaijani activists have blocked the corridor since last month. Armenia sees the blockade as an attempt by Azerbaijan to extend its control over the region. Pashinyan says Armenia considers the military exercise that the Moscow-dominated Collective Security Treaty Organization planned for this year “inappropriate in the current situation.”