09, 2008

Meetings of President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan in New York

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On September 24, President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, who is currently in New York to participate at the General Debate of the 63rd session of the UN General Assembly, met with the Prime Minister of the Jan Peter Balkenende.

The two sides hailed the current high level of the Armenian-Dutch relations and expressed interest in further developing bilateral ties.

President Sargsyan expressed gratitude to the Government of the Netherlands for the technical assistance provided to Armenia and mentioned that the economic cooperation has good prospects and that it is necessary to start working on that direction. The Netherlands is the second largest trade partner of Armenia among the EU states, while Armenia is a member to the “Dutch Group” of the World Bank.

The President of Armenia thanked the Prime Minister of the Netherlands for the balanced position of his country regarding the NK conflict.

Serzh Sargsyan also informed Jan Peter Balkenende on the visit of the Turkish President conducted to Armenia by his invitation. The Prime Minister of the Netherlands welcomed the ongoing dialogue between Turkey and Armenia.
Speaking about the discussions going on in the Dutch Parliament regarding the Armenian Genocide, the Prime Minister of the Netherlands said,” We are, of course, well aware of the Genocide issue, it is important to be honest and frank with history.”

The Prime Minister of the Netherlands thanked the President of Armenia for the assistance provided by Armenia to the hundreds of Dutch citizens during the Georgia-Ossetia conflict, who were provided the opportunity to return to Holland via Armenia.

The President of Armenia invited the Prime Minister of the Netherlands to Armenia. That visit will allow to discuss all the issues pertaining to the expansion of the political dialogue and economic cooperation more substantially.

At the same day President Serzh Sargsyan met with the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group which was attended also by the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Andrzei Kasprzuk.

At the meeting discussed were issues related to the NK peace process, as well as to the probability of the next meeting of the Presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan.


President Serzh Sargsyan met also with the President of Serbia Boris Tadic. The two Presidents spoke about the importance of cooperation in the political, economic and cultural areas, and noted that significant potential is there and decisive steps should be taken toward its realization.

Serzh Sargsyan and Boris Tadic noted that despite the geographical distance, the Armenian and the Serb peoples have many historic and cultural similarities and harbor mutually warm feelings.

By the request of the Serbian President, Serzh Sargsyan presented Armenia’s position regarding the NK conflict resolution and the recent regional developments. Serzh Sargsyan and Boris Tadic concurred that the peaceful resolution of the conflicts through the negotiations, establishment of peace and security in the region are important prerequisites for its advancement, development and implementation of the regional projects.

The President of Serbia stressed the special role that the Armenian-Serbian community can play in the development of the bilateral relations. Boris Tadic invited Serzh Sargsyan to conduct a visit to Serbia.

Later same day President Serzh Sargsyan met with the President of Latvia, Valdis Zatlers. The two Presidents expressed satisfaction with the current level of the bilateral relations. Serzh Sargsyan and Valdis Zatlers highlighted the importance of cooperation in the framework of the European New Neighborhood policy. Serzh Sargsyan noted that the Latvian experience of Euro-integration can be useful. In his turn Valdis Zatlers expressed readiness to assist Armenia in that field.

The Presidents of Armenia and Latvia stressed the importance of direct flights between the capitals of the two countries.

At the meeting discussed were also some regional issues. Valdis Zatlers invited the President of Armenia to visit Riga.

On September 24, President Serzh Sargsyan visited the “Metropolitan” museum of New York. The President of Armenia toured the exhibitions of early Christian and Byzantine art, where he was shown the exhibited Armenian medieval cross-stone.

In the second part of the day, President Serzh Sargsyan received in his residence the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice. At the meeting discussed was a wide range of issues pertaining to the Armenian-American relations and regional developments.

The President of Armenia expressed gratitude to the Government of the United States for is continuous assistance to Armenia. In her turn, the Secretary of State noted that political reforms in Armenia were moving forward which is a good base for continuing the US assistance.

The two sides spoke about the NK peace process conducted in the framework of the OSCE Minsk Group. The President of Armenia reiterated Armenia’s readiness to solve the problem based on peaceful negotiations and mutual concessions. Condoleezza Rice stressed the importance of a peaceful resolution of the NK conflict and noted it would foster the establishment of peace and cooperation in the region.

The Secretary of State congratulated the President of Armenia on his initiative aimed at the normalization of the relations with Turkey and expressed hope that the visit of the Turkish President to Armenia and the recent Armenian- Turkish meetings were a good beginning for future cooperation.

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