Armenia had considerable progress in Karabakh peace under Serzh Sargsyan’s presidency -  Republican MP

17:47 • 10.04.18



The period of Serzh Sargsyan’s presidency marked a serious progress in the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) peace efforts, a lawmaker from the ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA) said Tuesday, praising the third president’s contribution to the process.


In an interview with Tert.am, Karen Bekaryan highlighted the referendum clause enshrined in the peace package (as an important element affirming the people’s right to self-determination).


“We can clearly state today that the right to self-determination was fixed – along with the mechanism allowing for its exercise – i.e. referendum. That’s a fact, not just a judgement. Under the third president, we had a considerable success in the Karabakh conflict settlement process,” he noted.

 

“In the regional politics, we need to consider the complications and difficulties in our region. We have a northern neighbor [Georgia], whose relations with Russia are very tense due to the problems with [South] Ossetia and Abkhazia. We have discharged our duties with honor - both as a neighbor and a strategic ally – without becoming part of that conflict,” he said.


Bekaryan further highlighted the Islamic Republic’s tensions with the US as another regional challenge for Armenia. “We managed to avoid being trampled upon, trying to be perceivable without turning hostile to anyone,” he noted.


“Another important regional component is Turkey,” Bekaryan added. “The president initiated attempts to normalize the Armenian-Turkish relations. We didn’t have any independence yet, while Turkey, as an independent state, was conducting a worldwide campaign to demonstrate that we were a ‘nation with complexes’, with whom it isn't possible to work as we live only with [recollections of] history etc. We overcame this process with a specific outcome, as Turkey's propaganda turned out really bankrupt.”

As another significant achievement of Serzh Sargsyan's presidency, Bekaryan praised the April 24, 2016 Holy Mass in the Vatican (in which Pope Francis declared the Armenian Genocide the 20th century's first major atrocity against the humankind).

 

He further spoke of integration processes, highlighting the advantages of Armenia's membership in the Eurasian Economic Union (the EEU Treaty and access to the 170 million market). “We didn’t choose between the black and white, avoiding a confrontation between two integration processes. It wasn’t so easily achieved. The [process] was unspeakably difficult. So the personal factor, in my view, had really a great role in this process,”  he said.

 

Bekaryan also appreciated the dynamically developing relations with the US.

 

He further elaborated on the crisis with Syrian-Armenians as a crucial touchstone for the country. “We are the third [country] in Europe with the number of incoming refugees,” he noted.

Asked to comment on Armenia’s reputation on the global arena, and the general perceptions of the country, Bekaryan said he has overall positive impressions.


“I believe our reputation surpasses the existing dimensions and opportunities; that’s the result of real work. The world treats us as a reliable partner, as someone whose words, promises and sincerity can never be called into question. If not the trust, we would hardly have such outcomes in integration processes,” he added.

Tigranuhi Martirosyan





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