PRAGUE. 26.07.2022- Remarks and the answers to the questions of journalists of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia Ararat Mirzoyan following the meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Czechia Jan Lipavský
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Firstly, I would like to thank my colleague Jan Lipavský for the very warm welcome. I would also like to seize the opportunity to congratulate the Czech Republic on the successful launch of its presidency in the Council of the European Union.
This is my first visit to Czechia – a country which has officially taken the course of pursuing the legacy of Václav Havel, underscoring human rights, democratic development, strong civil society and multilateral collaboration. Currently, the Government of Armenia is implementing its ambitious agenda of democratic reforms and transformations and Czechia is our reliable partner in this regard.
We highly value our relations with Czechia, based on shared values and historical friendship and are keen to promote the Armenian-Czech political dialogue and interstate relations to a qualitatively new level, including through high-level reciprocal visits, regular consultations between our Ministries of Foreign Affairs and active inter-parliamentary engagement.
During our discussions, my colleague and I agreed to put our utmost efforts towards the utilization of the potential in the spheres of economy, trade and investment, as well as fostering intercultural exchanges and people-to-people contacts.
Armenia and Czechia have mutually beneficial cooperation also within multilateral formats, including the UN, OSCE, CoE. This is extensively complemented by the Armenia-EU cooperation with its milestone agreement – the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement. We highly value the active role of the Czech Republic in promoting the framework of the Eastern Partnership and stand ready to join efforts in maintaining this cooperation platform in the spirit of mutual understanding, inclusiveness and a merit-based approach.
Today we also extensively discussed the issues of regional and international security, referred to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the situation resulting from the 44-day war unleashed against the people of Nagorno-Karabakh.
I briefed Minister Lipavsky on Armenia’s position and efforts toward establishing peace and stability in our region, where the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairmanship plays a key role in reaching a comprehensive and lasting settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. In this regard, I express my gratitude to the Czech side for its continued support to these efforts and the role the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairmanship plays.
Nearly two years after the secession of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh, humanitarian issues remain unresolved. Azerbaijan continues to hold Armenian prisoners of war and civilian hostages, using them as a political weapon. Also, Azerbaijan’s policy of destruction, desecration of the Armenian cultural and religious heritage in the territories fallen under Azerbaijani control is of great concern. In this regard, we expect a targeted response and practical action from the international community.
The realities resulting from the use of force and mass violations of human rights cannot create a sustainable foundation for regional peace and security. Armenia has repeatedly stated its readiness for constructive dialogue, refrained from preconditions and warmongering rhetoric, for sustainable peace and development of our region.
I will conclude my speech with this. Once again, thank you very much Mr Lipavský for your hospitality and please kindly receive my invitation to visit Armenia.
Question: How is Armenia affected by sanctions on Russia?
Answer: Of course, sanctions against Russia have their negative direct or indirect impact on Armenia’s economic development and economic situation in the region in general. Thus, we are trying to find short-term and mid-term solutions, mechanisms for addressing, and if possible eliminating these threats. And my hope is that we will succeed in this process.