PM attends triple holiday-dedicated events in Artsakh
On May 9, newly elected Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan paid his first working visit to the Republic of Artsakh, where he participated in the events dedicated to the Victory in the Great Patriotic War, the formation of the NKR Defense Army and the Liberation of Shoushi.
Earlier today, high-ranking officials from Armenia and Artsakh marched from Renaissance Square in Stepanakert as far as the Stepanakert Memorial, where they laid flowers and wreaths to the memorial of freedom-fighters and soldiers killed during the Great Patriotic War and the liberation of Shushi.
The Prime Minister then visited the fraternal cemetery of the freedom fighters killed in the Artsakh War, laid flowers at their tombs and paid tribute to perished freedom fighters. Later on, the high-ranking officials of the two republics laid flowers at the Shushi Tank Monument, Sparapet Vazgen Sargsyan’s and Nelson Stepanyan’s statues, honoring their memory.
Nikol Pashinyan and Bako Sahakyan next attended at the opening of the Armenian Dram Museum in Shushi, which was established with the technical and professional assistance of the Central Bank of Armenia. They visited the museum and got acquainted with the exhibits.
The museum features coins and notes from the ancient Armenian Tsopk Kingdom, Tigran the Great, Artavazd II, Artashes 2, Cilician Armenia, Russian Empire and USSR, and all the editions of the Armenian Republic.
The museum has a special place dedicated to Artsakh, the coins minted in Tigranakert, silver coins minted in Shoushi in the 19th century, contemporary souvenir banknotes and coins, as well as commemorative coins issued by the CBA.
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Accompanied by Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakyan, RA Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, who is in the Artsakh Republic on a working visit, called at the Defense Army headquarters where a working consultation was held.
Commander of the Defense Ministry, Commander-in-Chief of the Defense Ministry, Lieutenant-General Levon Mnatsakanyan reported to heads of two Armenian States the operational situation in the front line. A wide range of issues related to the strengthening of military cooperation between Armenia and Artsakh and improving the mechanism of restraint of the enemy were discussed during the consultation.
Nikol Pashinyan pointed out that the past month’s developments demonstrated that the Armenian army is on a high institutional level. The Premier underscored that the Armenian government will keep in the spotlight all issues related to the fighting capacity of our armed forces.
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan met with Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakyan as part of his working visit to the Artsakh Republic. Issues related to cooperation between Armenia and Artsakh in different spheres were discussed during the meeting.
“Honorable Mr. Prime Minister, I welcome you, as well as your decision to pay first foreign visit to Artsakh after being elected to the office of Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. It is important that today we called at the Ministry of Defense and had the opportunity to talk about our economy.
We expressed conviction that from now on our efforts should aim the strengthening and development of our homeland - Armenia and Artsakh. I welcome your visit to Artsakh, which is part of our homeland,” Bako Sahakyan said.
“Thank you Mr. President, I believe it important that my first visit as Prime Minister is being paid to the Republic of Artsakh, since our relations with the Republic of Artsakh are seen as a top priority.
I came here with the following two messages: first of all, I fully and unconditionally express my support to the Republic of Artsakh and its President, and secondly, as I noted in my speech yesterday, we are keen to push ahead with the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process, which should take into account the right of the people of Artsakh to self-determination. I have declared that I am prepared to negotiate with the President of Azerbaijan in the OSCE Minsk Group format. Nevertheless, I consider that the given format of talks cannot be deemed as comprehensive unless one of the sides to the conflict, the leadership of Artsakh, is involved in the negotiations.
It is perhaps, dare I say it, one of the reasons that the negotiations have failed to produce the desired result, because it is hard to believe that any talks in such an incomplete and half-measured format can lead to good results.
We also think that we must exert additional efforts, including through the use of the potential of the Diaspora so that we could not only promote the international recognition of the Republic of Artsakh, but also add momentum.
Committed to exclusively peaceful settlement of the issue, we condemn any action or threat of use of force.
There is no doubt that the Armenian government will make every effort to protect the interests of the Republic of Artsakh and its people, including in the international arena, but I do believe that the interests of the Republic of Artsakh and its people in the international arena will be best represented and protected by the Artsakh authorities. Therefore, our efforts should aim the soonest possible international recognition of the Republic of Artsakh,” Nikol Pashinyan noted.
“I have been stating repeatedly over the years that we have overcome the difficulties of our lives together with our sisters and brothers in the Motherland and the Diaspora and have recorded all our achievements through that same trinity. Your visit and our negotiations, the issues discussed are not only inspiring hopes, but all of us are convinced that thanks to that same trinity, we shall fulfill our most sacred mission, that is, the defense of our homeland with the same faithfulness and determination, the protection of our borders and the improvement of our people’s living standards.
Also, I had the opportunity to give you details of the situation at the State border, and you were able to make sure that the Armed Forces of the Republic of Artsakh, the citizens of Artsakh and all Armenians are firmly determined to retaliate should the enemy try to launch another criminal campaign. Naturally, today’s visit and our discussions helped us clarify our possible response to such criminal encroachments,” Bako Sahakyan said.
“Mr. President, I am happy to state that the Defense Army of Artsakh has full control of the situation in the frontline and is highly efficient at this point of time, but I feel that there is another component in our traditional combat readiness, The atmosphere of unity that has emerged in Armenia, Artsakh and the Diaspora after the recent developments.
I think this is an important military-political factor, and there is no doubt that the Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Artsakh, the Armenian people are not only capable of defending themselves, but they can make deeply regret any such force as may attempt on our security.
Again, I would like to thank you for the warm reception and the sincere dialogue between us. This sincere dialogue was not established today, but this is my first visit as Prime Minister, and I am convinced that our joint efforts will be productive: today’s visit does not leave any doubt. Thank you,” the Prime Minister concluded.