PM Nikol Pashinyan addresses the nation live
Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan addressed the nation live. The Prime Minister’s speech is presented below.
I am convinced that you have already learned about some important developments from my Facebook post, the main meaning of which is that I invite you, all of you, all the supporters of the Revolution, all the supporters of the people’s power to the Republic Square right now as I wish to talk to you immediately.
You know that we find ourselves in a very challenging situation. Yesterday and today I made decisions to dismiss the First Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces, and the Chief of the General Staff. The signing of the aforementioned decisions was followed by a statement issued on the part of the General Staff with which the military demanded my resignation.
What is the reason behind their move? This is very important record, and I want to make that record in the Republic Square. But in any case, the most important task we have today is to preserve the people’s civil power, because what is going on can be called as an attempt of military coup. You know that I took full responsibility for what happened; I tried to do everything to answer all the questions myself. But we have reached a stage where, unfortunately, we cannot avoid asking questions to some of our high-ranking military officials, because if we want to learn the whole truth about the war to be known, we cannot but ask questions to some of our high-ranking military officials. But some of our army generals are dissatisfied with the fact that we, the society, the civil authorities, the government, can have questions about some episodes. It is inevitable.
This does not mean that something has to happen as a result of answering those questions. We simply need to know the answers to a number of questions, answers to specific military episodes.
We need to understand the connections that existed between some political circles and high-ranking officers. Who were the ones that contacted army officers during the war and instead of telling them to continue fighting they kept insisting that the problem of power should be resolved? I am not talking about the attempted coup of November 9, when it turned out that there were forces that wanted to attack high-ranking government officials, to take revenge, so that the whole truth about the war would not be revealed.
I am hereby inviting you to the Republic Square to talk about these issues. At the same time, I want to urge you to keep calm, that is, not to take any reckless action; just come to the Republic Square as a participant of a peaceful civil assembly. I want to call on all our soldiers, the military to continue exercising their functions of defense of the homeland, the Republic of Armenia. Please do not lose your vigilance. Everything is under control; everything is under our soldiers’ control. No such action should be allowed as might impair the service process.
I should state that it is inadmissible for the Armed Forces and the army to engage in politics and make political assessments. I understand that, of course, we are not talking about all the military. Most of them simply obeyed the orders coming from their superiors, but I want to emphasize that they have superiors in the face of the Prime Minister, the Minister of Defense, and the military are obliged to obey the legal orders and instructions given by their superiors.
At the moment I can say that the First Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces has already been dismissed, and he has no right to act as such. I have signed the necessary documents to dismiss the Chief of General Staff, and that process is underway. I would like to thank everyone for their services, express hope and conviction that we will overcome this situation in accordance with the legislation of the Republic of Armenia. In other words, in the near future we will appoint a new Chief of General Staff, Deputy Chiefs of General Staff.
The Minister of Defense was instructed to perform his functions, perform his official duties, and ensure the normal functioning of the Armed Forces. At this moment, I just want to say the following:
I am hereby inviting you to the Republic Square to talk about what we have to do. I want to talk to you and address a number of urgent issues of topical concern.
Thank you. I call on everyone to come to the Republic Square.”