Facts on COP28 to date – 6 December 2023

 12:56, 8 December 2023

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 8, ARMENPRESS. COP28 has mobilized over $83 billion in the first five days, setting the pace for a new era in climate action.

These include the first ever declarations on food systems transformation and health, plus
declarations on renewable energy and efficiency, as well as initiatives to decarbonize
heavy emitting industries.

11 pledges and declarations have been launched and received historic support.

On day one of COP28, the Presidency facilitated a historic agreement to operationalize
and capitalize funding for Loss and Damage, supporting those on the front lines of the
climate crisis with $726 million already pledged to date.

$3.5 billion in new money announced to replenish the Green Climate Fund (GCF)

$133.6 million announced toward the Adaptation Fund

$129.3 million announced toward the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDC)

$31 million to the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF)

• UAE launched a $30 billion catalytic fund, ALTÉRRA, to drive positive climate action.
The fund seeks to mobilize an additional $250 billion globally.
• The UAE committed $200 million to help vulnerable countries through Special Drawing
Rights (SDRs) and $150 million to fund water security solutions.
• The World Bank announced an increase of $9 billion annually for 2024 and 2025 to
finance climate-related projects. Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) announced a
cumulative increase of over $22.6 billion toward climate action.
The full breakdown of pledges and declarations so far is as follows:
•  The Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge has been endorsed by
123 countries.
•  The COP28 UAE Declaration on Agriculture, Food, & Climate has received
endorsements from 140 countries.
• The COP28 UAE Declaration on Climate and Health has been endorsed by 132
•  The COP28 UAE Declaration on Climate Relief, Recovery & Peace has been
endorsed by 75 countries and 40 organizations.
•  The COP28 UAE Declaration on Climate Finance has been endorsed by 13
• The Coalition for High Ambition Multilevel Partnerships (CHAMP) Pledge has
been endorsed by 65 countries.
•  The Oil and Gas Decarbonization Charter has been endorsed by 52 companies,
representing 40 percent of global oil production.
Media Fact Sheet
• The Industrial Transition Accelerator has been endorsed by 35 companies and
six industry associations, including World Steel Association, International
Aluminium Institute, Global Renewable Alliance, Global Cement and Concrete
Association, Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, International Air Transport
Breakdown of financial pledges and contributions so far:
• Loss and Damage: $726 million
• Green Climate Fund: $3.5 billion (increasing second replenishment to $12.8
•  Adaptation Fund: $133.6 million
•  Least Developed Countries Fund: $129.3 million
• Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF): $31 million
•  Renewable Energy: $5 billion
•  Cooling: $25.5 million
•  Clean Cooking: $30 million
• Technology: $568 million
•  Methane: $1.2 billion
• Climate Finance: $30 billion from UAE, $200 million in Special Drawing Rights,
and $32 billion from Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs)
•  Food: $3.1 billion
•  Nature: $2.6 billion
• Health: $2.7 billion
• Water: $150 million
• Gender: $2.8 million
•  Relief, Recovery and Peace: $1.2 billion
•  Local Climate Action: $467 million․

Greek FM welcomes Armenia-Azerbaijan Joint Statement in call with Armenian counterpart Mirzoyan

Dec 9 2023

Foreign Minister George Gerapetritis, in a phone conversation with his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan on Friday, welcomed a Joint Statement issued by Armenia and Azerbaijan in which the two sides agreed to a mutual release of prisoners of war and other confidence-building measures aiming to normalise their relations.

Gerapetritis also told the Armenian foreign minister that Greece supports the efforts to achieve permanent peace in the South Caucasus.
In addition, they discussed the latest developments in relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and Gerapetritis briefed Mirzoyan on the results of the Greece-Turkiye High-Level Cooperation Council on Thursday.

The Armenian foreign minister thanked Gerapetritis for Greece’s support and welcomed the progress in Greek-Turkish relations as a development that will have a positive impact on broader regional stability, the foreign ministry said. Mirzoyan also invited Gerapetritis to Yerevan, with the latter accepting the invitation and saying that the visit would be arranged through diplomatic channels.

The two foreign ministers are also to meet in Brussels on Monday on the sidelines of the EU Foreign Affairs Council (FAC), which, at Greece’s request, will be preceded by an informal breakfast of the EU foreign ministers with the Armenian minister as an official guest.

In this context, Gerapetritis stressed the importance Greece places on addressing the displaced population’s humanitarian needs and promoting an institutional dialogue between the EU and Armenia.

He added that Greece is making an active contribution to both issues while supporting the continuation of efforts to achieve lasting peace in the region.


India ready to participate in infrastructure development projects in Armenia

 14:20, 5 December 2023

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 5, ARMENPRESS. The centuries-old relations between Armenia, India and Iran are a strong foundation for cooperation in present days, Ambassador of India to Armenia Nilakshi Saha Sinha has said.

Speaking at the New Regional Reality and the Crossroads of Peace forum in Yerevan, the Indian Ambassador said that Armenia and India have historic ties, and Iran is a bridge that has contributed to the development of the relations.

“India and Iran are closely cooperating as part of the North-South international transport corridor initiative, which connects the Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf with the Caspian Sea, towards Russia and Europe. We are ready to work with Armenia to understand how the country can benefit from the opportunities of this corridor,” the ambassador said.

Speaking about the Crossroads of Peace project developed by the Armenian government, the Indian ambassador said that this initiative presented by Prime Minister Pashinyan seeks to promote connectivity in the Caucasus, including railways, roads and power transmission lines, through the development of infrastructures.

“Armenia is currently developing its road infrastructure, from the southern border with Iran to the northern border with Georgia. Certain Indian companies have displayed interest towards this project. We are ready to participate in infrastructure development projects in Armenia,” the Indian ambassador said.

[see video]

Samaritan’s Purse Provides Aid to More than 35,000 Armenians

Dec 1 2023

When fighting erupted between the Caucasus nations of Azerbaijan and Armenia in September, more than 100,000 ethnic Armenians fled their homes in Nagorno-Karabakh in search of safety in Armenia. Suddenly living as refugees, they were left without basic necessities. Samaritan’s Purse saw their plight and began a response to help relieve their suffering on Sept. 28.

Over the next several weeks, our DC-8 cargo plane made two trips to the scene, airlifting 53 tons of critical aid, with special thanks to overflight permissions from Turkey. Our staffers gave out blankets, hygiene kits, solar lights, and more to grateful families. At the same time, our teams of doctors, nurses, and physical therapists treated burn victims with severe injuries from a gas explosion. All of this work was bolstered by partnerships with 42 local churches who helped in the distribution of relief supplies.

During this response, more than 35,000 Armenians received:

  • 17,000+ Blankets.
  • 9,600+ Toys and Games for Children.
  • 8,200+ Hygiene Kits.
  • 7,500 Solar Lights.
  • 5,100+ Backpacks.
  • 5,100+ School Kits.
  • 5,000+ Bibles.
  • 5,000 Gloves.
  • 4,900+ Hats.
  • 4,900+ Socks.
  • 2,800+ Winter Coats.
  • 470+ Surgical Procedures for 85 Patients.
  • 270+ Physical Therapy Sessions.
  • 270+ Cleaning Kits.
  • 50 Stoves.
  • 40+ Bedding Kits.

Most importantly, while our Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) offered this physical aid, they also pointed the refugees to the only source of eternal hope—Jesus Christ. They did so, in part, by handing out Bibles published in the Armenian language. Even now, weeks after our DART left on Nov. 23, Samaritan’s Purse continues to supply more than 50,000 copies of God’s Word for local congregations to use in outreach.

We thank God for the privilege of representing Christ to displaced Armenians in their time of need.

There will be more international crises like this one. You can help us prepare to respond quickly in Jesus’ Name by giving through our 2023 Christmas Gift Catalog.

Catholicos Aram I concludes pontifical visit in New York

His Holiness Catholicos Aram I conducting the ecumenical service at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral in New York

His Holiness Catholicos Aram I of the Great House of Cilicia has been on a pontifical tour of the East Coast Armenian communities since arriving in the United States on November 6. 

Throughout his tour, His Holiness visited Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, spreading his message of love and unity. During visits to churches, schools, nonprofits and advocacy organizations, he called for a new vision to preserve Armenian identity, strengthen national and religious values and unite the faithful through the church, with a special appeal to the youth. On November 17, His Holiness reached his final stop in New York City.

On Saturday, November 18, His Holiness conducted an Ecumenical Service at St. Illuminator’s Armenian Cathedral. Attending were Eastern Prelate Archbishop Anoushavan, Western Prelate Bishop Torkom, Eastern Prelacy Vicar Very Rev. Fr. Sahag Yemishian and Eastern Diocesan Vicar Very Rev. Simeon Odabashian, among others.   

The prayer “In Faith I Confess” by St. Nerses Shnorhali, which has been translated into 50 languages, was read at this service in 17 languages. The reciters included Catholicos Aram (Armenian), Rev. Fr. Gabriel Alkass (Syriac), Bishop Athenagoras (Greek), Rev. Fr. Ryan Muldoon (Latin), Archbishop Gabriele Caccia (Italian), Metropolitan Zachariah (Malayalam), Bishop Gregory Mansour (English), Sophie Khachatryan (German), Bishop John (English), Karina Bayrakdarian (French), Anayis Bayrakdarian (Spanish), Aurora Bayrakdarian (Romanian), Rev. Fr. Gerald Murray (Portuguese), Medeia Mark (Georgian), Carlo Bayrakdarian (Arabic), Archdeacon Shant Kazanjian (Hebrew), Bishop Makarios (Ethiopian), Arevig Caprielian (Russian), Fr. Antoine Rizk (English), Fr. Jacob Ghali (English), Bishop Mikayel Mouradian (English), Rev. Fr. Athanasios (English), Rev. Fr. Efrem (English) and the clergy and congregation together (English). 

The special service concluded with Catholicos Aram I praying for the unity of all peoples. “Even though we are diverse, we have Christ in common. We need to act as one,” he said. 

The sacred hymn “Ourakh Ler” (Rejoice) was sung as the participants joined a fellowship hour in Pashalian Hall with attendees. During the gathering, soprano soloist Anahit Zakaryan, accompanied on the piano by Vagharshak Ohanyan, soulfully performed Caccini’s “Ave Maria” and the lilting “Yerkir Intz Hamar” (Sing for Me). 

Mary Duggan, a lifelong and devoted member of the St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, called the event “deeply inspiring and unforgettable.”

Catholicos Aram I addressing congregants at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral in New York

Also on November 18, His Holiness met with youth from St. Illuminator’s Cathedral and St. Sarkis Church in New York, as well as Sts. Vartanantz Church of New Jersey. The discussion focused on the reorganization of the Diaspora, the revitalization of the church and the role of youth in Armenian life.

 After delivering his pontifical message at the Divine Liturgy on Sunday, November 19, at St. Illuminator’s Cathedral, celebrated by Bishop Torkom Donoyan, Western Prelacy Prelate, the Catholicos was honored at a gala banquet at the world-famous Rockefeller Center Rainbow Room, with windows from the 65th floor providing vast views of Manhattan. 

The more than 200 faithful gathered in honor of His Holiness at the Rockefeller Center Rainbow Room in New York

The more than 200 attendees, which included the Armenian representative to the United Nations Ambassador Mher Margaryan and Armenian Missionary Association of America Executive Director Zaven Khanjian, enthusiastically greeted the Catholicos as he entered, led by Archbishop Anoushavan Tanielian, Eastern Prelacy Prelate, and surrounded by more than a dozen Armenian clergy.      

Following a heartfelt invocation by His Holiness, the crowd was warmly welcomed by Prelacy banquets coordinator Susan Chitjian Erickson and Executive Council secretary Tamar Kanarian serving as mistress of ceremonies. The American and Armenian national anthems were sung a cappella by Siran Tchorbajian. 

Steering Committee chairman Hrant Petrosyan, Esq., and Executive Council chairman Col. Aram Sarafian both spoke of Catholicos Aram’s many attributes, including “his love for all that is palpable,” “his efforts for those in need,” “his work as a prominent theologian” and “his pious role in serving Armenia, the Artsakh refugees, the Diaspora and the youth.” The church “is not four walls, it is the people,” said Sarafian, crediting the Catholicos for his valuable service in this regard.  

Displaying the strong support that His Holiness has given to the youth, three young voices took center stage. Siamanto Academy student Vahan Chaglasian, speaking in Armenian, welcomed the Catholicos and called his visit “inspiring, uplifting and supportive of our parents and their children.” 

St. Gregory of Datev Institute graduate Taleen Lakissian related the inspiring story of her father Rev. Fr. Mesrob Lakissian’s ordination as the priest of St. Illuminator’s Cathedral when she was only 10 months old. His journey “taught me so many things – my faith, church history, culture and how to serve my church and community,” she said.   

“Salt and Light” Youth Ministry member Hovsep Terterian praised the emphasis on the fostering of youth involvement in the church, the community and with those who are in need of encouragement and hope in their everyday lives. All three young people received long ovations by the appreciative attendees. 

Inspiring and Powerful Address

Archbishop Tanielian, in introducing the Catholicos, thanked all who had traveled from near and far to attend the welcoming of His Holiness and those who helped make this Thanksgiving pontifical visit possible and successful.   

Catholicos Aram I spoke with the rapt audience in English and emphasized the important points he made throughout his two-week visit, including the unity of the Armenian people and the importance of a strong family foundation. He focused his eloquent address on his many dialogues with the youth.    

His Holiness Catholicos Aram I addressing attendees of the banquet in his honor in New York

“Globalization,” he stated, “is no longer a word. It is a reality of life. It has its own vision, a culture that destroys all small communities. We are directly exposed to this culture. We can’t live in this world in isolation. We have to learn to be proactive and preserve our Armenian identity. We cannot live in the past. We have to keep pace with the changing times and become the church of the 21st century.”   

The church “is not a museum,” he added, stating that Armenians must renew the church “to become a transforming presence. The youth have the primary role in changing our church.”    

The Catholicos recalled that in 1976, when he was a student, “the church was challenged. We cannot survive without our roots, and also, we must be an important part of the U.S. But there can be no assimilation. We are at the most crucial juncture of our Armenian nation. We are being invaded and impacted by many crises, polarization and tension in Armenia and the Diaspora.”   

“We have to strengthen our faith, hope and vision. We need leaders who can lead our nation, leaders who have courage, wisdom and who are aware of the geopolitical realities, which are not in favor of our homeland. We need to develop. We cannot remain where we are. We must engage with the challenges and cope with the new reality in Armenia and the Diaspora,” he advised.   

“In the last two years, I have declared strongly to the Diaspora that we have to go forward with a new vision, and the youth have a very important role to play,” he said. “Our youth, with their life practices and courage, can play a pivotal role,” Catholicos Aram I said to a lengthy standing ovation from attendees.

Celebratory Awards and Performances   

Several young people delighted the attendees with pieces displaying their musical artistry.   Singer Anahit Indzhigulyan presented a powerful “Mardigi Yerkuh” (Ashot Satian), along with “Je te veux” (Eric Satie). Karina Vartanian performed Gomidas Vartabed’s soulful “Armenian News” and Giacomo Puccini’s “O Mio Babbino Caro.”   

Hooshere Bezdikian offered Khachatur Avetisian’s proud “Caravan.” Siran Tchorbajian sang a lilting “Keleh Keleh” by Gomidas Vartabed, and Bezdikian and Tchorbajian presented the timeless and celebratory “Yerevan-Erebuni” by Edgar Hovhannisian in a joyous duet.      

Professional and widely-acclaimed violinist Diana Vasilian followed with an Armenian medley of favorites that had the audience singing in unison. 

Archbishop Tanielian announced the awards that honored “our brave soldiers.” The Mesrob Mashdotz Medal was presented to Armenian Studies scholar and Prelacy Executive Director Dr. Vartan Matiossian for his contributions to Armenian culture. Karnig Alajajian received the order of Knight of Cilicia for his active participation and philanthropic contribution to the Armenian community. The title of Prince of Cilicia was bestowed upon Richard Carolan for his longtime contributions to the Eastern and Western Prelacies and the Catholicosate of Cilicia, while his mother Tina Carolan was honored with the Queen Zabel medal.

Longtime and indefatigable community activist and Executive Director of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) Aram Hamparian offered greetings from sister organizations. “Our spiritual shepherd Aram Vehapar teaches us many things—among them are that we are owners of, not witnesses to, our Armenian faith, our Armenian freedom, our Armenian future,” he said. “Our destiny does not await us, rather it must be written by us.” Referring to the recent tragedy in Artsakh, he declared, “We must decide our future, or others will decide it for us. We either keep our seat at the table of nations, or others will have it taken from us, leaving us forgotten by history.”   

Hamparian paid tribute to the recently deceased Dr. Dertad Manguikian, a “powerful lay leader, a great ally of Aram Vehapar,” and their timeless bond of duty. That is what “connected them and what has brought us together here today. That is the hallmark of our church, our cause. And that is among Vehapar’s core teachings, that God’s work begins in our hearts, but must be shaped by our hands.”   

With a final congratulatory tribute to Catholicos Aram I, Hamparian stated, “Aram Vehapar remains our spiritual source of strength, our enduring wellspring of hope.”    

The celebratory event concluded with a heartfelt chorus of Giligia, after which many in the crowd surrounded and congratulated the Catholicos. 

From Washington to New York

The pontifical visit to the Eastern Prelacy of the U.S. commenced in Washington, D.C. on November 6, where His Holiness served as Guest Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives and raised the plight of the more than 100,000 Artsakh refugees and their urgent humanitarian needs with lawmakers.

While in Washington, His Holiness also offered a lecture on the geopolitics of religion in the Middle East at George Washington University. During the lecture, he emphasized the message of peace and respect for human rights in the monotheistic religions, and concluded with a challenge for representatives of the Jewish, Christian and Islamic religions to meet in Jerusalem, their shared Holy Land, to renew their commitment to collective values and principles, symbolizing a potential for a new era of peace in the Middle East.

Additionally, Catholicos Aram presided over the Divine Liturgy and delivered his pontifical address at Soorp Khatch Armenian Apostolic Church, after which the pontifical procession moved to the site where the new church, along with its adjacent structures, will be constructed. His Holiness conducted the blessing of the land ceremony on the site.

Before continuing on to Philadelphia on November 13, Catholicos Aram I visited the Armenian National Committee of America where he was warmly welcomed by Executive Director Hamparian, who provided an overview of the ANCA’s recent work. His Holiness concluded his visit by reaffirming the Holy See of Cilicia’s full support for the ANCA in its mission to pursue and protect the Armenian nation.

The Catholicos later arrived in Philadelphia and received a warm welcome from the community at the entrance of St. Gregory the Illuminator Church. In his pontifical address, the Catholicos emphasized the significance of living by religious, spiritual and national values in order to preserve collective identity.

His Holiness participated in a breakfast meeting with representatives of Armenian organizations in Philadelphia on November 14. The Catholicos and pontifical delegation also visited the Armenian Sisters Academy, where they were warmly welcomed by the school’s principal, Sister Emma, the teachers, the students and the school community. The students prepared a showcase in his honor.

Later that day, His Holiness Catholicos Aram I traveled to New Jersey, where he was welcomed in front of Sts. Vartanantz Church. During his pontifical address, His Holiness encouraged the faithful to renew their faith through active participation in the communal life of the church. 

On November 15, His Holiness convened with representatives of Armenian organizations and associations in New Jersey. He also visited the Hovnanian School, where he was welcomed by the principal, teachers, students and parents. The students presented a program in honor of His Holiness. In his address, His Holiness reminisced about the school’s construction decades ago, highlighting the crucial role of Armenian schools in preserving the Armenian identity.

His Holiness then visited the Armenian community in Troy, New York. Accompanied by his pontifical delegation, he received a warm welcome from the community in front of Holy Cross Armenian Apostolic Church. H.E. Archbishop Souren Kataroyan journeyed from Canada to participate in the visit.

 In his pontifical address, His Holiness underscored that the church is a community founded on love. He highlighted that Christ not only loved humanity but also preached the importance of loving one another and clarified that love requires dedication, service and support. He urged the community to express its love by supporting immediate and extended families: the nation, the church and the community. 

Prior to concluding his visit in New York, His Holiness Aram I convened with representatives of Armenian organizations in Troy before traveling to New Britain, Connecticut on November 16. Catholicos Aram I and his pontifical delegation were welcomed at the entrance of St. Stephen’s Armenian Apostolic Church. In his pontifical address, His Holiness underlined the pivotal role of the church in community life, stating that the church has a mission to unite the faithful and address their spiritual needs. Catholicos Aram I departed New York on Tuesday, November 21.

SPECA countries transform Karabakh into a platform for economic cooperation [Azeri opinion]

Nov 28 2023

Having paid attention to the processes that are taking place now in our renewing globe, we can see that the world's countries primarily require economic and political stability and peace. States and governments that organize these types of discussions through international platforms understand that healthy dialogue and increased cooperation are the primary mechanisms for achieving sustainable development and better, more effective organization of the emerging new political architecture.

Today, Azerbaijan continues its commitment to partnership and cooperation on all international platforms based on mutual respect and trust, successfully proving to the entire community the path to sustainable development. The multi-vector economic policies executed under President Ilham Aliyev's leadership during the previous 20 years, as well as the excellent management model used, have had a considerable impact on the development of not just the South Caucasus but also the Central Asian region.

In general, our country has created relations with Central Asian governments in multilateral forms based on mutual respect and confidence in recent years; the President of Azerbaijan attends high-level meetings of the region's heads of state as an honored guest.

Recently Azerbaijan, under the auspices of the United Nations (UN), has brought new breath into these relations. The Summit meeting of the leaders of state and government of the UN Special Program for the Economies of Central Asian Countries – SPECA took place in Baku for the first time in history.

The United Nations Special Program for the Economies of Central Asia (SPECA) was launched in 1998 to strengthen subregional cooperation in Central Asia and deepen its integration into the world economy. SPECA countries consist of Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

President Ilham Aliyev's speech at the Summit held on November 24, 2023, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of SPECA, as well as a series of bilateral meetings with the heads of states participating in the meeting, which determined the future directions of SPECA's activities, highlighted the importance of our country for the institution, and revealed the state's consistent work in the fields of regional integration and socio-economic development.

The presence of the Prime Ministers of Georgia and Hungary, as well as the Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, as guests of honor at President Ilham Aliyev's request, will open the way for a broader framework of economic cooperation.

These initiatives, of course, are a result of Azerbaijan's consistent policy, which has resulted in political stability and an autonomous economy. "Without stability, no economic growth can be achieved. Today, wars, conflicts and bloody clashes are raging in various regions across the globe, whereas, our countries enjoy peace, stability and security, with successful growth and development processes underway," President Ilham Aliyev remarked during his speech at the Summit.

Over the last two decades, the fourfold increase in Azerbaijan's GDP, the reduction of poverty from approximately 50 percent to 5.5 percent, and the fact that our foreign exchange reserves have exceeded our direct foreign debt by tenfold have all contributed to a favorable investment environment for foreign countries and companies in our country. Thus, over the last 20 years, more than 310 billion US dollars have been invested in Azerbaijan's economy, with approximately 200 billion US dollars landing in the non-energy sector.

President Ilham Aliyev also mentioned the centuries-old historical and cultural relations between Central Asian countries and Azerbaijan, as well as our ongoing collaboration in the fields of transportation and logistics, during his speech. The President stated that Azerbaijan has become a reliable partner in this field. He pointed out how useful our investments of billions of US dollars for the expansion of the capacity of the Eurasian East-West and North-South transport corridors are to strengthen the transport security of SPECA countries.

It is no surprise that the importance of SPECA to the UN has grown in recent years. This year, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution commemorating SPECA's 25th anniversary, and the SPECA Trust Fund was formed under UN auspices. Azerbaijan, for its part, will contribute 3.5 million US dollars to the Trust Fund.

I'd like to emphasize that the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), a UN sub-structure, supports SPECA activities. This year, on October 19–20, 2023, the Republic of Azerbaijan, including the Milli Majlis, was represented at a high level in the Regional Conference held in Geneva, Switzerland, under the auspices of UNECE.

As a result of improving connections, the SPECA countries are heavily involved in the restoration and reconstruction of our territories liberated from occupation. During his speech, the country's leader underlined this issue specifically, and the work of these states was lauded. President Ilham Aliyev mentioned the school and creative center being built as a gift for the people of Azerbaijan by brotherly Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan and emphasized that additional steps have been taken to enhance cooperation in this area.

The involvement of Central Asian countries in the work being done to turn Karabakh into a paradise opens up new avenues of cooperation by increasing the volume of foreign investment flowing into Azerbaijan as well as creates conditions for the Great Return to accelerate.

As a result, Karabakh, in addition to being a source of pride for the Azerbaijani people, is also becoming a global center of peace, justice, and mutual collaboration.

Mazahir AfandiyevMember of the Milli Majlis of the Republic of Azerbaijan

Armenian Defense Ministry denies report on supplying missiles to Ukraine

 12:55, 21 November 2023

YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 21, ARMENPRESS. The Armenian Ministry of Defense has denied media reports that claimed Armenia will supply missiles to Ukraine.

Ministry of Defense spokesperson Aram Torosyan denied the reports in written comments to Armenpress.

ArmenpressA number of foreign news media, including Azerbaijani ones, have been generating reports recently claiming that Armenia will supply missiles to Ukraine. This report has also been published by certain Armenian news outlets. How would you comment on this?

Aram Torosyan: A relevant division of the Ministry of Defense is monitoring media reports pertaining to the sector and is commenting or reacting to them according to necessity and appropriateness. This given information is untrue and we call upon Armenian news media not to circulate the fake narratives generated by foreign propaganda sources.

Yerevan hosts IBA Junior World Boxing Championships


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 23, ARMENPRESS. Yerevan is hosting the IBA Junior World Boxing Championships.

Armenia will be represented by 16 athletes in the championships.

Scheduled from 23 November to 4 December at the MIKA Sport Arena, this event marks a significant milestone in junior boxing, hosting around 600 young talents from around 60 nations across 26 weight categories.

Armenia was chosen as a host country by IBA given the recent success of Armenian athletes, as well as the high-level organization of the 2022 and 2023 European championships in Yerevan.

Nikol Pashinyan holds farewell meeting with Japanese Ambassador to Armenia Fukushima Masanori


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 22, ARMENPRESS. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan received Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Armenia Fukushima Masanori, who is completing his diplomatic mission in our country, the Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement.

The Prime Minister thanked Mr. Masanori for contributing to the development of Armenian-Japanese relations and cooperation with his vigorous activities. Nikol Pashinyan noted that Armenia attaches importance to the expansion of cooperation with Japan in various directions and expressed hope that bilateral ties will continue to deepen and strengthen.

Ambassador Fukushima Masanori, in turn, thanked the Prime Minister for cooperation and assured that in the future he will invest all his efforts for the development of relations between Armenia and Japan.

Prime Minister Pashinyan wished the Ambassador all the success.

A new stage of Armenian-British cooperation. What is behind it?

Nov 21 2023
  • JAMnews
  • Yerevan

New stage of Armenian-British relations

Minister of State of the United Kingdom for Europe Leo Docherty is in Yerevan on a regional visit, but a statement from the British Embassy emphasizes that the minister’s visit to Armenia is intended to continue “the strategic dialogue with Armenia that took place last week in London.”

According to some Armenian experts, this proves that Armenia is a “strategic direction” for the West. Others believe that Britain’s role in the South Caucasus is actually aimed at nullifying Russia’s influence, including resolving the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict and completing the peace process.

This is Docherty’s second visit to Armenia; his first visit took place in May. He will also visit Azerbaijan and Georgia.

The British minister arrived in Yerevan immediately after the end of the visit of Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan to London. Last week, the Armenian Embassy moved to a new building in London. Mirzoyan stated: “Together with the new building, we are also laying a new foundation for deepening our relations.” The parties announced the start of a “strategic dialogue.”

  • “Take aid to Armenia off the agenda” – Yerevan’s appeal to the CSTO
  • Borrel threatened Baku with “serious consequences”. Opinion on the EU position
  • “The enclaves may become a pretext for Baku’s next attack” – Armenian political scientist

Just before his visit, Docherty stated:

“The South Caucasus faces serious security challenges that threaten the stability of the region – both internal and emanating from neighboring countries. In an unstable region, the UK is a trusted partner for reform, peace and stability.”

The British Embassy said that during the minister’s visit the democratic reform agenda in Armenia will be discussed, as well as the need for direct talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

The region on Russia’s southern border, according to the embassy text, “remains vulnerable to external interference.” And the minister will propose that Yerevan, Baku and Tbilisi “expand trade and security cooperation to diversify the economy and reduce Europe’s dependence on Russia.”

Georgia is actually one step away from EU membership, Armenia openly declares its desire “to be closer – as far as the EU considers possible”, Azerbaijan’s position is ambiguous

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan talked about this with Minister for European Affairs Leo Docherty. He said that mutual visits will contribute to more successful realization of the cooperation potential.

The Prime Minister’s Office reports that Docherty emphasized Britain’s interest in deepening cooperation with Armenia. The progress of the Armenian-Azerbaijani peace process was also discussed.

The Secretary of the Armenian Security Council also received the British Minister. Armen Grigoryan and Leo Docherty discussed “opportunities for cooperation in the security sphere”.

Armenian Prime Minister on peace treaty with Azerbaijan, “Crossroads of Peace”, arms acquisition and more

According to political scientist Gurgen Simonyan, “the West is beginning to perceive Armenia as a strategic destination”. He suggests considering the strengthening of relations with the UK among other developments, recalling Armenia’s deepening cooperation with France and Germany.

“The beginning of strategic relations between Armenia and the UK, as well as the opening of the RA Embassy in London, are links in a chain reflecting the development of relations,” he said.

Meanwhile, political observer Hakob Badalyan believes that the activation of British policy in the South Caucasus is only aimed at neutralizing Russia’s influence:

“The main emphasis will be on the promotion and completion of the Armenian-Azerbaijani ‘peace process’ on Western platforms, which will allow building the next stage of weakening or practically nullifying Russia’s influence.”

According to him, Azerbaijan now refuses not Western platforms and mediation, but negotiations with Armenia, and it will behave this way until Yerevan agrees to its terms:

“An attempt is being made to persuade Armenia to accept them. Britain, of course, has a certain influence on Azerbaijan in the form of tens and hundreds of billions invested in the Azerbaijani economy. But the question is whether there is a motivation to influence Azerbaijan and whether there is a real possibility of such influence.”

Badalyan believes that “the logic of the British game” is different, the emphasis is on providing Armenia with “certain bonus promises” so that Yerevan agrees to the idea of a new deal with Azerbaijan.