10, 2014

President attends event dedicated to Iravunq newspaper’s 25th anniversary


President Serzh Sargsyan today attended the event dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the Iravunq newspaper at Aram Khachaturian Concert Hall.

On the occasion of the jubilee, the Armenian President awarded Hayk Babukhanyan the Medal of Movses Khorenatsi for his great personal contribution to the success of the newspaper. On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Iravunq newspaper, Editor-in-Chief Hovhannes Galajyan and the Director of the newspaper Gegham Grigoryan were awarded the Medal of Gratitude for their contribution to the success of the newspaper, as well as for their many years’ devotion and fruitful work.

Serzh Sargsyan congratulated the editorial staff of the newspaper and its readers on the occasion of the jubilee and wished them success and fruitful work.


Congratulatory remarks by President Serzh Sargsyan on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Iravunq newspaper

Honorable friends,
Dear Iravunq staff, ladies and gentlemen,

I cordially congratulate us all on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Iravunq newspaper.

A 25 year period is a venerable age for any institution, especially for the media. In fact, the Iravunq has become one of the witnesses of our past 25 year old history. Tomorrow many historians will try to restore the road we have covered through the materials of the Iravunq as well. They are going to study them combining with other sources and evidence and will try to assess the history of the independent Armenia.

And that is a glorious history: a history of fight, struggle, steadfastness and victory. We can certainly be proud of such a history.

Together we have not given in to difficulties. On the contrary, we have been stubborn enough to bring our purposes and longings to life.

Most probably, the first 25 years are the most happiest, careless and joyful days of one’s life. All of us started out in life in the age of 25 outlining the path of our dream. Things have turned out differently for each of us. However, those who set clear goals always achieve success in the future.

Indeed, the same first 25 year period in the newspaper’s life could not have passed so carelessly. I am confident it has been years of establishment, improvement, development and, of course, struggle. I think today the Iravunq ranks high among Armenia’s free media sector.

Honorable ladies and gentlemen,

We have to admit that today the building of our nation state stands partly owing to free activities of the media. It is one of the most important and firmest pillars of our state and society.

At the beginning of this year, I said on another occasion that the free discussion of public problems is the testimony to our strength, not our weakness. The fact that we do not mislead our people again bears witness to our strength only.

Of course, words are powerful. The definition given by Gevorg Emin is very accurate:

“Use words as cautiously as weapons,
When times get rough,
Be aware, in the same mold are cast
Bullets and letters.”

Of course, the world nowadays has changed immensely, letters are not cast any longer and newspapers are produced via computers. However, words continue to be powerful.

I am happy to state that the power of freedom of speech in the Republic of Armenia creates and filters helping us to improve. In most cases the present drawbacks are by-products of this quite bitter remedy.

As President of the Republic of Armenia, I reaffirm our authorities’ loyalty to freedom of speech and the media. Free activities of journalists and the media are perfectly protected by law in our country which has been consistently improved over the recent years by adhering to the best international and European experience in the sphere of human rights protection.

Today we can witness fewer cases in which journalists’ professional activities have been hindered. In this regard, I attach great value to the fact that serious measures have been taken to tackle the nasty phenomenon of committing physical violence upon mass media representatives. It is gratifying that these positive trends have been recognized in many reports produced by relevant authoritative international organizations.

Nevertheless, all of these trends need to be strengthened and developed. They show that freedom of speech is an irreversible reality in our country. Our task is to not only preserve what we have but also develop it by combing all our efforts.

Dear Iravunq staff,

Concluding my speech, I am pleased to congratulate you once again on the occasion of this jubilee. According to historians, a period of 25 years is a generation.

I hope that very many new generations of the free and independent Armenia are going to read your newspaper.

I wish the Iravunq success, fruitful work and, of course, unhindered progress in the interests of our country and society. I sincerely congratulate you once more for your 25 year old difficult, but honorable path.

Thank you.


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