Catholicos Aram I sends congratulatory message to Nikol Pashinyan on appointment as Prime Minister of Armenia

Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia Aram I sent a congratulatory message to Nikol Pashinyan on the occasion of being appointed Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. The congratulatory message runs as follows,

‘’Your Excellency Mr. Prime Minister,
With Christian love and patriarchal blessing we convey our greetings from the Cathedral of the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia, Antelias. We congratulate you on the occasion of the parliamentary elections and your appointment as Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia and formation of the new Government.

Indeed, at a crucial period in the history of the Armenian people and Armenia, you are again called to assume the difficult and responsible post of Prime Minister. It’s a position that is not just a position or honor, but is a mission to build the homeland in its essence and purpose. Today, as you know, our motherland is surrounded with serious trepidation, caused by both domestic and extrnal factors. The foundations of the statehood are endangered. Disappointment and uncertainty have become a dominant part of the lives of the people of Armenia and . Therefore, the people expect you to undertake the mission of restoring and revitalizing the homeland with the highest level of responsibility and commitment. Based on this expectation and prospect, we want to draw your attention to the following points:

A. The war unleashed against Artsakh by the joint forces of Azerbaijan and Turkey and the numerous human casualties caused by it, the occupation of the lands liberated by the blood of our martyrs, the demolition of religious monuments and the displacement of thousands of families have casued deep wrath and discouragement among our people. It is impossible to turn this bitter and gloomy page of our modern history without accountability. There are questions needing answers. There are uncertainties that need to be clarified. There are mutual accusations that also need to be clarified. Therefore, we expect that the newly elected National Assembly will give a priority importance to the etsablishment of a commission involving all the factions, so that it can comprehensively examine all the issues related to the war and deliver public report to our people.

B. The internal unity of our people, especially in this alarming period, is an urgent imperative. Indeed, unity is not about identicalness of opinions, but is the harmonization of plurality for the benefit of the higest interests of the nation and the state. Such unity will become a strong foothold for the strengthening of the state of Armenia, a strong fundament for the government-people relations, and a strong support for Armenia’s foreign relations. It is necessary that the unhealthy political culture and internal political tensions that developed during the election campaign give way to government-opposition healthy and constructive criticism. This stems from the interest of the Motherland.

C. It is the people who give a description and shape to the homeland, and the people express their unique identity and protect it from the dust of time with its moral, spiritual and national values. It reminds us of our survival in the face of the terrible storms of history. At a time when anti-national “values” of world culture begin to penetrate everywhere, we expect the Armenian government, especially through educational and cultural institutions, to lead our people to a strong commitment to values that guarantee our nation’s identity and strength.

D. Today Artsakh is wounded. Its pain is the pain of all our people. Our collective commitment to the independence of Artsakh must be firm. International recognition of the independence of Artsakh should become one of the priority issues not only for the Armenian government, but also for the diaspora. The collective potential of our people should be put at the service of strengthening the independence of Artsakh.

E. The Armenia-Diaspora partnership is vital for both Armenia and Artsakh and the Diaspora. We believe that harmonious and close cooperation of these three units of our nation, naturally, with the division of roles and clarification of priorities, is imperative. In this context, we consider it important and priority to develop a pan-Armenian agenda with the active participation of the Diaspora.

F. The Artsakh war and the subsequent signing of a ceasefire between Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia are actually an indicator of a new geopolitical situation in the . The current dangerous situation requires the Government to be vigilant and unwavering for ensuring the security and territorial integrity of Armenia. The current situation in a region pregnant with dangerous developments for Armenia also requires determination to say “No”. Indeed, throughout its history, Armenia, which was a bone of contention at the crossroads of interests of great empires, survived, although sometimes wounded, thanks to its collective courage to say ‘’No’’.

G. Today Armenia is surrounded by genocide perpetrator of old and new times, who continue their expansionist aspirations towards Armenia and Artsakh, ignoring their obligations and provisions of international law, and therefore the Armenian army needs to become more organized and effective. We also need to be able to expand our circle of strategic friends and partners.

Mr. Prime Minister, we expect you to take seriously our concerns and thoughts, which were briefly presented to you, so that we can lead our homeland to a brighter future with collective and consistent efforts, in a prudent and responsible spirit.

We prayerfully appeal to the Lord for the Republic of Armenia and Artsakh to be unshakable and safe, and we ask Him to grant you wisdom and strength in fulfilling your difficult mission.

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