“We have always felt your support, which is especially important now” - Nikol Pashinyan receives French parliamentarians
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Acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan received a French parliamentary delegation led by Guy Tessier, Vice-President of the French National Assembly’s Armenia-France Friendship Group and Chairman of the France-Artsakh Friendship Caucus.
The delegation consists of Senator, Vice-President of the French Senate’s Armenia-France Friendship Group and Founding Member of the France-Artsakh Friendship Caucus Valérie Boyer, MP and Vice-President of the Armenia-France Friendship Group Jean-Pierre Cubertafon, MPs Jacqueline Dubois and Xavier Breton.
“Armenia highly appreciates the fact that France has always stood by Armenia, as evidenced by the visits paid by high-ranking delegations from both the legislative and executive branches in such a difficult period and your participation in commemorative events on April 24. As a token of solidarity with friendly Armenia and Artsakh, this comes to reaffirm the continuity of deeply rooted Armenian-French relations and the common set of democratic values. I stated this in my latest phone talk with President Emmanuel Macron.” Nikol Pashinyan said. He went on to highlight the key role played by France in the process of international recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide with the adoption of the law on recognition of the Armenian Genocide (which turned 20 this year). On President Macron’s initiative, April 24 was proclaimed as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day and commemorated at the state level. Taking the opportunity, Nikol Pashinyan thanked the guests for submitting to the French National Assembly on April 16 a draft resolution on the release of Armenian prisoners of war by Azerbaijan.
Guy Tessier noted that having gone through many trials and destructive wars throughout its history, France best understands and shares the pain suffered by the Armenian people. In his words, it is shameful that Azerbaijan fails to respect the laws of war and has not released the Armenian prisoners of war as of yet. The submission of a resolution for discussion at the French National Assembly pursues that very goal, moreover, it is planned to submit a similar resolution for discussion in the French Senate.
Mr. Tessier emphasized that despite the hardships, the hope of revival is alive for Armenia and Artsakh, and France will back it in every possible way. To this end, on December 3, 2020, the National Assembly of France passed a resolution on the need to recognize the Artsakh Republic by 188 votes to 3.
The French parliamentarians shared their impressions of a recent visit to Artsakh, noting that they had also called at the Servicemen’s Rehabilitation Center. They said that they had been shocked by what they saw at the Stepanakert cemetery and in Yerablur, and that they were deeply saddened at the loss suffered by Armenian families. At the same time, the guests emphasized that they were impressed by the contacts had in Armenia and Artsakh, including with young people who were full of hope and faith in the future.
Issues related to the situation around Artsakh were discussed during the meeting. The interlocutors touched upon the steps taken to resume the talks in the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs’ format, the impediments to the repatriation of Armenian prisoners of war, the delivery of humanitarian assistance to Artsakh, and the joint efforts aimed at providing medical support to servicemen. The French parliamentarians assured of their continued support to both Armenia and Artsakh, including the process of post-war rehabilitation and development.
“I am impressed by your kind remarks and your willingness. We have always felt your support, which is especially important now,” Nikol Pashinyan said.