Armenia Population: 3,038,217

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 History
Armenia prides itself on being the first nation to formally adopt Christianity (early 4th century). Despite periods of autonomy, over the centuries Armenia came under the sway of various empires including the Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Persian, and Ottoman. During World War I in the western portion of Armenia, the Ottoman Empire instituted a policy of forced resettlement coupled with other harsh practices that resulted in at least 1 million Armenian deaths. The eastern area of Armenia was ceded by the Ottomans to Russia in 1828; this portion declared its independence in 1918, but was conquered by the Soviet Red Army in 1920. Armenia remains involved in the protracted Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with Azerbaijan. Nagorno-Karabakh was a primarily ethnic Armenian region that Moscow recognized in 1923 as an autonomous oblast within Soviet Azerbaijan. In the late Soviet period, a separatist movement developed which sought to end Azerbaijani control over the region. Fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh began in 1988 and escalated after Armenia and Azerbaijan attained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. By the time a ceasefire took effect in May 1994, separatists, with Armenian support, controlled Nagorno‑Karabakh and seven surrounding Azerbaijani territories. The 1994 ceasefire continues to hold, although violence continues along the line of contact separating the opposing forces, as well as the Armenia-Azerbaijan international border. The final status of Nagorno-Karabakh remains the subject of international mediation by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group, which works to help the sides settle the conflict peacefully. The OSCE Minsk Group is co‑chaired by the US, France, and Russia. Turkey closed the common border with Armenia in 1993 in support of Azerbaijan in its conflict with Armenia over control of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas, further hampering Armenian economic growth. In 2009, Armenia and Turkey signed Protocols normalizing relations between the two countries, but neither country ratified the Protocols, and Armenia officially withdrew from the Protocols in March 2018. In 2015, Armenia joined the Eurasian Economic Union alongside Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. In November 2017, Armenia signed a Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with the EU. In spring 2018, Serzh SARGSIAN of the Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) stepped down and Civil Contract party leader Nikol PASHINYAN became prime minister.

 Geography
    Landlocked in the Lesser Caucasus Mountains; Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan) is the largest lake in this mountain range
Location: Southwestern Asia, between Turkey (to the west) and Azerbaijan; note - Armenia views itself as part of Europe; geopolitically, it can be classified as falling within Europe, the Middle East, or both
Geographic coordinates: 40 00 N, 45 00 E
Area: total: 29,743 sq km
land: 28,203 sq km
water: 1,540 sq km

Size comparison: slightly smaller than Maryland
Land Boundaries: total: 1,570 km border countries (4): Azerbaijan 996 km, Georgia 219 km, Iran 44 km, Turkey 311 km
Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims: none (landlocked)
Climate: highland continental, hot summers, cold winters
Terrain: Armenian Highland with mountains; little forest land; fast flowing rivers; good soil in Aras River valley
Natural resources: small deposits of gold, copper, molybdenum, zinc, bauxite
Land use: agricultural land: 59.7% (2016 est.) arable land: 15.8% (2016 est.)
permanent crops: 1.9% (2016 est.) permanent pasture: 42% (2016 est.) forest: 9.1% (2016 est.)
other: 31.2% (2016 est.)
Irrigated land: 2,740 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards: occasionally severe earthquakes; droughts
Current Environment Issues: soil pollution from toxic chemicals such as DDT; deforestation; pollution of Hrazdan and Aras Rivers; the draining of Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan), a result of its use as a source for hydropower, threatens drinking water supplies; restart of Metsamor nuclear power plant in spite of its location in a seismically active zone
International Environment Agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants
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 People
Nationality: noun: Armenian(s)
adjective: Armenian
Ethnic groups: Armenian 98.1%, Yezidi (Kurd) 1.2%, other 0.7% (2011 est.)
Languages: Armenian (official) 97.9%, Kurdish (spoken by Yezidi minority) 1%, other 1% (2011 est.) note: Russian is widely spoken
Religions: Armenian Apostolic 92.6%, Evangelical 1%, other 2.4%, none 1.1%, unspecified 2.9% (2011 est.)
Population: 3,038,217 (July 2018 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 18.86% (male 303,712 /female 269,279)
15-24 years: 12.37% (male 195,722 /female 179,970)
25-54 years: 43.31% (male 640,089 /female 675,643)
55-64 years: 13.77% (male 192,515 /female 225,882)
65 years and over: 11.7% (male 142,835 /female 212,570) (2018 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 44.4 (2015 est.)
youth dependency ratio: 28.7 (2015 est.)
elderly dependency ratio: 15.8 (2015 est.)
potential support ratio: 6.3 (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 35.6 years
male: 33.9 years
female: 37.4 years (2018 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.25% (2018 est.)
Birth rate: 12.6 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Death rate: 9.5 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Net migration rate: -5.6 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 63.1% of total population (2018)
rate of urbanization: 0.22% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major urban areas - population: 1.08 million YEREVAN (capital) (2018)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.11 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.13 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.09 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.85 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.67 male(s)/female
total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2018 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth: 24.4 years (2015/16 est.)
Maternal mortality rate: 25 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 12.3 deaths/1,000 live births male: 13.7 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 10.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 75.1 years male: 71.8 years
female: 78.7 years (2018 est.)
Total fertility rate: 1.64 children born/woman (2018 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 57.1% (2015/16)
Physicians density: 2.9 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Hospital bed density: 4.2 beds/1,000 population (2015)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population

unimproved:
urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 96.2% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 78.2% of population (2015 est.)
total: 89.5% of population (2015 est.)

unimproved:
urban: 3.8% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 21.8% of population (2015 est.)
total: 10.5% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.2% (2017 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 3,400 (2017 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: <200 (2017 est.)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 20.2% (2016)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 2.6% (2016)
Education expenditures: 2.8% of GDP (2016)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write (2015 est.)
total population: 99.7%
male: 99.7%
female: 99.6% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 13 years male: 13 years female: 13 years (2015)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24: total: 36.3% male: 29.5% female: 45.7% (2016 est.)
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 Government
Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Armenia
conventional short form: Armenia
local long form: Hayastani Hanrapetut'yun
local short form: Hayastan
former: Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic, Armenian Republic
etymology: the etymology of the country's name remains obscure; according to tradition, the country is named after Hayk, the legendary patriarch of the Armenians and the great-great-grandson of Noah; Hayk's descendant, Aram, purportedly is the source of the name Armenia
Government type: parliamentary democracy; note - constitutional changes adopted in December 2015 transformed the government to a parliamentary system
Capital: name: Yerevan
geographic coordinates: 40 10 N, 44 30 E
time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
etymology: name likely derives from the ancient Urartian fortress of Erebuni established on the current site of Yerevan in 782 B.C. and whose impresive ruins still survive
Administrative divisions: 11 provinces (marzer, singular - marz); Aragatsotn, Ararat, Armavir, Geghark'unik', Kotayk', Lorri, Shirak, Syunik', Tavush, Vayots' Dzor, Yerevan
Independence: 21 September 1991 (from the Soviet Union);

notable earlier dates: 321 B.C. (Kingdom of Armenia established under the Orontid Dynasty), A.D. 884 (Armenian Kingdom reestablished under the Bagratid Dynasty); 1198 (Cilician Kingdom established); 28 May 1918 (Democratic Republic of Armenia declared)
National holiday: Independence Day, 21 September (1991)
Constitution: history: previous 1915, 1978; latest adopted 5 July 1995 amendments: proposed by the president of the republic or by the National Assembly; passage requires approval by the president, by the National Assembly, and by a referendum with at least 25% registered voter participation and more than 50% of votes; constitutional articles on the form of government and democratic procedures are not amendable; amended 2005, 2007, 2008, last in 2015 (2017) note: a 2015 amendment, approved in December 2015 by a public referendum and effective for the 2017-18 electoral cycle, changes the government type from the current semi-presidential system to a parliamentary system
Legal system: civil law system
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Armen SARKISSIAN (since 9 April 2018)

head of government: Prime Minister Nikol PASHINYAN (since 8 May 2018); Deputy Prime Ministers Mher GRIGORYAN and Tigran AVINYAN (since 16 January 2019)

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by the National Assembly in 3 rounds if needed for a single 7-year term; election last held on 2 March 2018; prime minister elected by majority vote in 2 rounds if needed by the National Assembly; election last held on 14 January 2019

election results: Armen SARKISSIAN elected president in first round; note - Armen SARKISSIAN ran unopposed and won the Assembly vote 90-10; Nikol PASHINYAN was chosen as prime minister by the parliament automatically after his party won a landslide victory in the December 2018 elections

note: After initially winning election on 8 May 2018, Nikol PASHINYAN resigned his post (but stayed on as acting prime minister) on 16 October 2018 to force a snap election (held on 9 December 2018) in which his bloc won more than 70% of the vote; PASHINYAN was reappointed prime minister on 14 January 2019
Legislative branch: description: unicameral National Assembly (Parliament) or Azgayin Zhoghov (minimum 101 seats, currently 132; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 5-year terms)

elections: last held on 9 December 2018 (next elections to be held December 2023)

election results: percent of vote by party - My Step Alliance 70.4%, BHK 8.3%, Bright Armenia 6.4%, RPA 4.7%, ARF 3.9%, other 6.3%; seats by party - My Step Alliance 88, BHK 26, Bright Armenia 18; composition - men 112, women 20, percent of women 15.2%
Judicial branch: highest courts: Court of Cassation (consists of the Criminal Chamber with a chairman and 5 judges and the Civil and Administrative Chamber with a chairman and 10 judges – with both civil and administrative specializations); Constitutional Court (consists of 9 judges) judge selection and term of office: Court of Cassation judges nominated by the Supreme Judicial Council, a 10-member body of selected judges and legal scholars; judges appointed by the president; judges can serve until age 65; Constitutional Court judges - 4 appointed by the president, and 5 elected by the National Assembly; judges can serve until age 70

subordinate courts: criminal and civil appellate courts; administrative appellate court; first instance courts; specialized administrative and bankruptcy courts
Political parties and leaders: Armenian National Congress or ANC (bloc of independent and opposition parties) [Levon TER-PETROSSIAN] Armenian Revolutionary Federation or ARF ("Dashnak" Party) [Hakob TER-KHACHATURYAN] Bright Armenia [Edmon MARUKYAN] Citizen's Decision [Suren SAHAKYAN] Civil Contract [Nikol PASHINYAN] Free Democrats [Khachatur KOKOBELYAN] Heritage Party [Raffi HOVANNISIAN] Prosperous Armenia or BHK [Gagik TSARUKYAN] Republic [Aram SARGSYAN] Republican Party of Armenia or RPA [Serzh SARGSIAN] Rule of Law Party (Orinats Yerkir) or OEK [Artur BAGHDASARIAN] Sasna Tser [Varuzhan AVETISYAN]
International organization participation: ADB, BSEC, CD, CE, CIS, CSTO, EAEC (observer), EAEU, EAPC, EBRD, FAO, GCTU, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (observer), OAS (observer), OIF, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National symbol(s): Mount Ararat, eagle, lion;
national colors: red, blue, orange
National anthem: name: "Mer Hayrenik" (Our Fatherland)
lyrics/music: Mikael NALBANDIAN/Barsegh KANACHYAN

note: adopted 1991; based on the anthem of the Democratic Republic of Armenia (1918-1922) but with different lyrics
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Varuzhan NERSESSYAN (since 11 January 2019)
chancery: 2225 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 319-1976
FAX: [1] (202) 319-2982
consulate(s) general: Glendale (CA)
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lynne M. TRACEY (since 5 March 2019)
embassy: 1 American Ave., Yerevan 0082
mailing address: American Embassy Yerevan, US Department of State, 7020 Yerevan Place, Washington, DC 20521-7020
telephone: [374](10) 464-700
FAX: [374](10) 464-742
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 Economy
Under the old Soviet central planning system, Armenia developed a modern industrial sector, supplying machine tools, textiles, and other manufactured goods to sister republics, in exchange for raw materials and energy. Armenia has since switched to small-scale agriculture and away from the large agro industrial complexes of the Soviet era. Armenia has only two open trade borders - Iran and Georgia - because its borders with Azerbaijan and Turkey have been closed since 1991 and 1993, respectively, as a result of Armenia's ongoing conflict with Azerbaijan over the separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region. Armenia joined the World Trade Organization in January 2003. The government has made some improvements in tax and customs administration in recent years, but anti-corruption measures have been largely ineffective. Armenia will need to pursue additional economic reforms and strengthen the rule of law in order to raise its economic growth and improve economic competitiveness and employment opportunities, especially given its economic isolation from Turkey and Azerbaijan. Armenia's geographic isolation, a narrow export base, and pervasive monopolies in important business sectors have made it particularly vulnerable to volatility in the global commodity markets and the economic challenges in Russia. Armenia is particularly dependent on Russian commercial and governmental support, as most key Armenian infrastructure is Russian-owned and/or managed, especially in the energy sector. Remittances from expatriates working in Russia are equivalent to about 12-14% of GDP. Armenia joined the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union in January 2015, but has remained interested in pursuing closer ties with the EU as well, signing a Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement with the EU in November 2017. Armenia’s rising government debt is leading Yerevan to tighten its fiscal policies – the amount is approaching the debt to GDP ratio threshold set by national legislation.
GDP (purchasing power parity): $28.34 billion (2017 est.) $26.37 billion (2016 est.) $26.3 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): $11.54 billion (2017 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 7.5% (2017 est.) 0.3% (2016 est.) 3.3% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): $9,500 (2017 est.) $8,800 (2016 est.) $8,800 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving: 17.8% of GDP (2017 est.) 16.6% of GDP (2016 est.) 18.4% of GDP (2015 est.) GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 76.7% (2017 est.) government consumption: 14.2% (2017 est.) investment in fixed capital: 17.3% (2017 est.) investment in inventories: 4.1% (2017 est.) exports of goods and services: 38.1% (2017 est.) imports of goods and services: -50.4% (2017 est.) GDP - composition, by sector of origin: agriculture: 16.7% (2017 est.) industry: 28.2% (2017 est.) services: 54.8% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products: fruit (especially grapes and apricots), vegetables; livestock
Industries: brandy, mining, diamond processing, metal-cutting machine tools, forging and pressing machines, electric motors, knitted wear, hosiery, shoes, silk fabric, chemicals, trucks, instruments, microelectronics, jewelry, software, food processing
Industrial production growth rate: 5.4% (2017 est.)
Labor force: 1.507 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 36.3%
industry: 17%
services: 46.7% (2013 est.)
Unemployment rate: 18.9% (2017 est.) 18.8% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line: 32% (2013 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3.5%
highest 10%: 25.7% (2014)
Distribution of family income - Gini index: 31.5 (2014) 31.5 (2013 est.)
Budget: revenues: 2.644 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 3.192 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 22.9% (of GDP) (2017 est.) Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-): -4.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Public debt: 53.5% of GDP (2017 est.) 51.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 0.9% (2017 est.) -1.4% (2016 est.)
Current account balance: -$328 million (2017 est.) -$238 million (2016 est.)
Exports: $2.361 billion (2017 est.) $1.891 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities: unwrought copper, pig iron, nonferrous metals, gold, diamonds, mineral products, foodstuffs, brandy, cigarettes, energy
Exports - partners: Russia 24.2%, Bulgaria 12.8%, Switzerland 12%, Georgia 6.9%, Germany 5.9%, China 5.5%, Iraq 5.4%, UAE 4.6%, Netherlands 4.1% (2017)
Imports: $3.771 billion (2017 est.) $2.835 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities: natural gas, petroleum, tobacco products, foodstuffs, diamonds, pharmaceuticals, cars
Imports - partners: Russia 28%, China 11.5%, Turkey 5.5%, Germany 4.9%, Iran 4.3% (2017)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $2.314 billion (31 December 2017 est.) $2.204 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external: $10.41 billion (31 December 2017 est.) $8.987 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home: $4.169 billion (2015 est.) $4.087 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad: $228 million (2015 est.) $215 million (2014 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares: $132.1 million (31 December 2012 est.) $139.6 million (31 December 2011 est.) $144.8 million (31 December 2010 est.)
Exchange rates: drams (AMD) per US dollar - 487.9 (2017 est.) 480.49 (2016 est.) 480.49 (2015 est.) 477.92 (2014 est.) 415.92 (2013 est.)
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 Energy
Electricity - production: 6.951 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption: 5.291 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports: 1.424 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - imports: 275 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 4.08 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 58% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 9% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 32% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 8,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 7,145 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 2.35 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 2.35 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 5.501 million Mt (2017 est.)
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 Communications
Cellular Phones in use: total subscriptions: 3,488,524
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 115 (2017 est.)
Telephone system: general assessment: telecommunications investments have made major inroads in modernizing and upgrading the outdated telecommunications network inherited from the Soviet era; now 100% privately owned and undergoing continued modernization and expansion (2019)

domestic: 16 per 100 fixed-line, 122 per 100 mobile-cellular; reliable fixed-line and mobile-cellular services are available across Yerevan and in major cities and towns; mobile-cellular coverage available in most rural areas (2019)

international: country code - 374; Yerevan is connected to the Caucasus Cable System fiber-optic cable through Georgia and Iran to Europe; additional international service is available by microwave radio relay and landline connections to the other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, through the Moscow international switch, and by satellite to the rest of the world; satellite earth stations - 3 (2019)
Broadcast media: Armenia’s government-run Public Television network operates alongside 100 privately owned TV stations that provide local to near nationwide coverage; three Russian TV companies are broadcast in Armenia under interstate agreements; subscription cable TV services are available in most regions; several major international broadcasters are available, including CNN; Armenian TV completed conversion from analog to digital broadcasting in late 2016; Public Radio of Armenia is a national, state-run broadcast network that operates alongside 18 privately owned radio stations (2019)
Internet country code: .am
Internet users: total: 1,891,775
percent of population: 62% (July 2016 est.)
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 Transportation
Airports: 11 (2013)
Airports (paved runways): total 10
(2017) over 3,047 m: 2 (2017)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 (2017)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4 (2017)
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2017)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 1
(2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2013)
Pipelines: 3838 km gas (high and medium pressure) (2017)
Railways: total 780 km
(2014) broad gauge: 780 km 1.520-m gauge (780 km electrified) (2014)

note: 726 km operational
Roadways: total 7,700 km
(2014)
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 Military
Military branches: Armenian Armed Forces: Ground Forces (Armenian Army), Air Force, Air Defense; "Nagorno-Karabakh Republic": Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army (2019)
Military service age and obligation: 18-27 years of age for voluntary or compulsory military service; 2-year conscript service obligation, which can be served as an officer upon deferment for university studies if enrolled in officer-producing program; 17 year olds are eligible to become cadets at military higher education institutes, where they are classified as military personnel (2019)
Military expenditures: 4.2% of GDP (2018) 4% of GDP (2017) 4.09% of GDP (2016) 4.25% of GDP (2015) 3.94% of GDP (2014)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: the dispute over the break-away Nagorno-Karabakh region and the Armenian military occupation of surrounding lands in Azerbaijan remains the primary focus of regional instability; residents have evacuated the former Soviet-era small ethnic enclaves in Armenia and Azerbaijan; Turkish authorities have complained that blasting from quarries in Armenia might be damaging the medieval ruins of Ani, on the other side of the Arpacay valley; in 2009, Swiss mediators facilitated an accord reestablishing diplomatic ties between Armenia and Turkey, but neither side has ratified the agreement and the rapprochement effort has faltered; local border forces struggle to control the illegal transit of goods and people across the porous, undemarcated Armenian, Azerbaijani, and Georgian borders; ethnic Armenian groups in the Javakheti region of Georgia seek greater autonomy from the Georgian Government
Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 14,701 (Syria - ethnic Armenians) (2018)
stateless persons: 848 (2018)
Illicit drugs: illicit cultivation of small amount of cannabis for domestic consumption; minor transit point for illicit drugs - mostly opium and hashish - moving from Southwest Asia to Russia and to a lesser extent the rest of Europe
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