UPPER LARS, Georgia/Russia — Hundreds of Armenian trucks were stuck at the main Russian-Georgian border crossing on Monday, November 28 after Russia reportedly tightened import and export controls on them amid its unprecedented tensions with Armenia.
Truck drivers said that the Russian customs service is subjecting them to stricter sanitary and other checks, causing long lines of the heavy vehicles on both sides of the Upper Lars crossing vital for the Armenian economy.
“I’m stuck at Lars for a second day,” one driver told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service. “There is a problem with paperwork. It’s not just me but also other Armenian trucks.”
“According to our information, several trucks have already returned [to Armenia] and about 200 others are waiting in line,” Garnik Danielian, an opposition parliamentarian, wrote on Facebook.
Deputy Economy Minister Arman Khojoyan confirmed that Russian customs officers have turned away some of the Armenian trucks carrying goods for the Russian market. But he did not give any numbers.