“Gyumri is to be the focus of Armenia Independence Day festivities this year” – Nikol Pashinyan congratulates Gyumri residents on City Day
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Accompanied by his spouse Anna Hakobyan and his daughters, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attended a festive concert, entitled “Gyumri Day 2019” and held as part of Gyumri Day celebrations.
Nikol Pashinyan delivered a speech, in which he stated, in part:
“Dear Gyumri residents,
Proud citizens of the Republic of Armenia,
I wish you a Happy Holiday,
Happy Gyumri Day,
Happy Armenia Day,
Happy Armenian People’s Day!
This square is already talking about everything. I never saw that Gyumri Square - Vardanants Square, was so crowded, even in the days of the revolution, which means that Gyumri won, Gyumri won, life won, work won, Armenia won, the Armenian people won.
Dear Gyumri residents,
I want to clearly emphasize that this is a holiday for all cities and towns of Armenia, and I want us all to understand why Gyumri is so important to us. At a time when, after many years of hostile invasions and destruction, Armenia was a dilapidated, rural country with huts, Gyumri was the most important center of urban life in Armenia, Gyumri maintained and developed the traditions of urban life for all of us.
And today that is why we attach such great importance to Gyumri, because in the most difficult years Gyumri preserved our image of a civilized people, our way of life and features of a civilized people. That is why we love and adore Gyumri, we are proud of Gyumri, we are proud of Gyumri.
And I want to make the most important statement: we need to change the perception of Gyumri. Stop perceiving Gyumri as a disaster zone, because Gyumri is not a disaster zone. Gyumri is the center of labor, culture, victory, and now the center of revolution, people's victory, civilization and democracy.
This does not mean that the aftermath of the 1988 disaster has been eliminated. Not at all. However, when we say: proud citizens of the Republic of Armenia, this does not mean that our pride has not been hit during this time. It means not at all. When we say that the Armenian people are a triumphal people, this does not mean that we have not suffered defeats. On the contrary, this means that, having gone through defeats, we were able to give new strength to our will to win.
And Gyumri, having gone through disaster, through poverty, through difficult days, is going through difficult days today, but demonstrates its determination to live, build, work, create, prosper and become a real center of cultural, political, economic life.
And I want to draw our attention to one fact: this year Gyumri will become the center of the celebration of the Independence Day of Armenia on September 21, that is, the main celebrations on September 21 will be held in the city of Gyumri. Thus, we begin a new tradition: every year on September 21, Independence Day, we will celebrate in different areas, and begin with Gyumri. And I want to declare with pleasure from today, August 25, September 21, the month of Gyumri.
Dear compatriots from all cities and villages of the Republic of Armenia, from all diaspora communities who have not been to Gyumri, who have not seen Gyumri, I urge you to visit Gyumri, as not a single Armenian will ever know himself completely until he visits Gyumri. In order to know our nation, ourselves, we need to see Gyumri, know every yard, every house, every wall, every building.
Therefore, Happy Holiday, Gyumri! And therefore, long live freedom; long live Gyumri; long live the Republic of Armenia; long live we and our children as we now live and will live in a free and happy Gyumri, free and happy Armenia!”