06, 2008

On June 23, President Serzh Sarkissian met with representatives of the Armenian community in Moscow

On June 23, President Serzh Sarkissian met with representatives of the Armenian community in Moscow.

President Sarkissian noted in his speech that, of course, the Diaspora is linked to the Motherland with thousands of ties, but the historic ties of those who live in Russia with the Motherland are tighter and multifaceted in terms of both political and economic contacts, and these realities greatly influence on the relations of Russian Armenians and Armenia.

Today the Motherland has entered into a new stage of reforms and the solution of the problems facing Armenia and the success of implementation of programs are possible only with coordination of efforts of all Armenians. The comprehension of the exceptional mission of the Diaspora has hinted us to create a separate Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, which is in the stage of formation. It’s aimed at raising the effectiveness of our policy in this sphere. We aspire to turn Armenia into a regional center of healthcare, banking and tourism.

President Sarkissian turned to three pivotal issues. The first is the internal political situation in Armenia. “I would like you to correctly comprehend and assess it. A political force that openly declared it would not accept any outcome of the election except for its victory several months before it was conducted, tries to destabilize the situation in the country through political blackmail. I have declared many times that deriving from Armenia’s interests I’m ready to negotiate and work with any political force, and my steps have been directed towards it ever since I assumed office.

The second issue I would like to speak about refers to Armenian-Turkish relations. Our position on the matter is distinct: there should be no closed borders between neighbor countries in the 21st century. Regional cooperation can be the best means for establishing stability. The Turkish side suggests forming a commission that would study the historic facts. We do not mind establishing that commission, but only when the border between our countries is opened. Otherwise, it can become a means of protracting the solution of the issue for many years. In the future I intend to undertake new steps to further the normalization of Armenian-Turkish relations. Most probably, I will invite Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul to Yerevan to watch the match between the national football teams of Armenia and Turkey.

The third issue is the resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict. You know that recently I held negotiations with the President of Azerbaijan. We agreed to continue the talks in the framework of the document on basic principles. Nagorno Karabakh will never be under Azerbaijan’s’ jurisdiction. The people of Nagorno Karabakh has achieved its right for independent statehood in the framework of law and later defended it in an imposed war, and the issue cannot have any solution diminishing that status,” RA President said.

Rector of the Moscow State University Viktor Sadovnich awarded RA President with a Big Order of the University.

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