BusinScience and Business Days 2023 kicks off in Yerevaness

 11:54, 1 December 2023

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 1, ARMENPRESS. The Science and Business Days 2023 conference has brought together entrepreneurs, scientists, analysts and businessmen in Yerevan to identify the ways that science and business can jointly contribute to the development of a knowledge-based, rapidly growing economy.

Minister of Economy Vahan Kerobyan opened the forum on December 1.

Essayist, mathematical statistician, former option trader and risk analyst Nassim Taleb is the keynote speaker of the forum.

Nobel Prize laureate, molecular biologist and neuroscientist Ardem Patapoutian, who was the 2022 keynote speaker, greeted the participants of this year’s event via videocall.

The Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport Zhanna Andreasyan also attended the opening ceremony.

In her speech, Andreasyan highlighted that the government has increased science funding over 150% in the recent years, and the results are already visible.

“We live in difficult times. Difficult times are times of the mind, and the mind can be developed only if we make steady efforts in the direction of developing science. This is among our government’s priorities. In the past years we increased science funding over 150% and this has already given results,” Andreasyan said.

Economy Minister Vahan Kerobyan recalled that the Armenian government has recently approved a support program for production of economically complex products. In the event of investments, the Armenian government is ready to return up to 35% of the investments to the companies in the form of cashbacks and tax privileges.

The economic policy is aimed at securing economic growth based on investments and increase of productivity.

Physicist, author, and entrepreneur César Hidalgo, whose research includes the introduction of methods to measure Economic Complexity and Relatedness, also participates in the forum.

AW: Book Review: All the Ways We Lied

All the Ways We Lied
By Aida Zilelian
Published by Keylight Books
Publication date: January 9, 2024
272 pages


Set in Queens, New York, the novel introduces readers to the Manoukians—a dysfunctional Armenian family—and the fraying rope that binds them.

While a father deteriorates from terminal illness, three sisters contend with one another, their self-destructive pasts and their indomitable mother, as they face the loss of the one person holding their unstable family together.

Kohar, the oldest sister, is happily married, yet grapples with fertility issues and, in turn, her own self-worth. Lucine, the middle child, is trapped in a loveless marriage and haunted by memories of her estranged father. Azad, the beloved youngest child, is burdened by an inescapable cycle of failed relationships.

By turns heartfelt and heart wrenching, All the Ways We Lied introduces a cast of tragically flawed but lovable characters on the brink of unraveling. With humor and compassion, this spellbinding tale explores the fraught and contradictory landscape of sisterhood, introducing four unforgettable women who have nothing in common yet are bound by blood and history.


I found it impossible to tear myself away from All the Ways We Lied. Yet, there were moments when I had to set the book aside, as it spoke deeply to me. Through authentic dialogue and intricate family dynamics, particularly among mothers, daughters and sisters, this novel unveils the universal narratives of families from all backgrounds.

Each line in the book possesses a standalone beauty, characterized by a seamless flow, an authentic tone and a captivating writing style. All the Ways We Lied is a much-needed addition to contemporary Armenian literature. Decades after the Armenian Genocide, the narrative bravely explores generational trauma and its impact on individuals and families today. Zilelian fearlessly addresses topics that have long been shameful, or amot, to discuss within proud Armenian families, such as mental illness, fertility struggles, failed marriages and broken and estranged families.

I believe that the burden of carrying generational scars, stemming from grief, missed opportunities and unrealized dreams, aligns with the author’s intent behind the title—exposing “all the ways we lied to others and ourselves.”

The exploration of the Manoukian family, especially the matriarch Takouhi and her upbringing, provided me with a new understanding and perspective of the lengths a resilient individual would go to reclaim their life from desperation and loneliness. A particularly cherished scene involves the adult sisters spending a night at their childhood home, showcasing the normal and often comical shenanigans that resonate with sisters from all walks of life and likely from the beginning of time.

Zilelian offers readers a mirror through which they can see themselves in the characters, fostering a sense of connection and alleviating feelings of isolation. I believe that one of the author’s intentions in writing this extraordinary narrative is to encourage meaningful conversations with others who may find resonance with the unforgettable characters and scenarios presented.

In conclusion, I highly recommend All the Ways We Lied for its profound storytelling, relatable characters and the opportunity it provides to reflect on our own lives. It will be released on January 9, 2024 and is available for pre-order

Aida Zilelian

About the Author

Aida Zilelian is a first generation American-Armenian writer, educator and storyteller from Queens, NY. She is the author of The Legacy of Lost Things, recipient of the 2014 Tololyan Literary Award. She has been featured in the Huffington Post, NPR’s Takeaway, Poets & Writers, Kirkus Reviews, among other reading series and print outlets. Her short story collection These Hills Were Meant for You was shortlisted for the 2018 Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction. Her short story “The Piano” won first prize in the Lighthouse Weekly contest.

Zilelian was the curator of Boundless Tales, one of the first and longest-running reading series in Queens, NY. She is on the Board of Directors of Newtown Literary, a Queens-based literary journal that supports emerging writers. Zilelian is also an advisory board member of the International Armenian Literary Alliance (IALA), an organization that helps Armenian writers in all stages of their careers. All the Ways We Lied is her second novel.

Victoria Atamian Waterman is a writer born in Rhode Island. Growing up in an immigrant, bilingual, multi-generational home with survivors of the Armenian Genocide has shaped the storyteller she has become. She is a trustee of Soorp Asdvadzadzin Armenian Apostolic Church and chair of the Armenian Heritage Monument in Whitinsville, MA. She is the author of "Who She Left Behind."

Armenian President presents Crossroads of Peace project to Iraqi counterpart

 13:49, 22 November 2023

YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 22, ARMENPRESS. President Vahagn Khachaturyan said he presented to his Iraqi counterpart Abdul Latif Rashid the Crossroads of Peace project at their meeting on November 22 in Yerevan. 

Speaking at a joint press conference with the Iraqi president, the Armenian president said they discussed issues of partnership around regional and international matters.

“We emphasized the need for dialogue around regional security environment and joining efforts in conditions of the processes taking place in the international arena and the resulting challenges. I presented to my respected counterpart the Crossroads of Peace project developed by the Armenian government,” Khachaturyan said.

He said that Armenia is interested in the unblocking of regional economic and transport connections based on the principles of sovereignty, equality, jurisdiction and reciprocity.

During the meeting the presidents also attached importance to strengthening cooperation as part of fighting all manifestations of international terrorism, and making joint efforts aimed at countering illegal migration.

The Crossroads of Peace project is about creating new infrastructures or improving the scope and quality of the existing ones. Armenia is ready to establish five checkpoints on the Armenia-Azerbaijan borders for road infrastructures including in Kayan, Sotk, near Karahunj, near Angeghakot , and Yeraskh. Also, to establish two checkpoints on the Armenia-Turkiye border in Akhurik and Margara for road infrastructures. Armenia is prepared to ensure communications between Armenia, Azerbaijan and Turkiye, by restoring four railway sections in the territory of the Republic of Armenia. Armenia is ready to restore the Nrnadzor-Agarak railway section and to establish checkpoints near the borders, to restore the railway section from Yeraskh to the border of Nakhchivan and to establish a checkpoint in Yeraskh, to restore the depleted parts of the railway from Gyumri to the border of Turkiye and to establish a checkpoint in Akhurik. Also, Armenia is prepared to restore the depleted parts of railway from Hrazdan to Kayan and to establish a checkpoint in Kayan. This will create new links between all the countries of the region. The principles of the Crossroads of Peace are: all infrastructures including roads, railways, airways, pipelines, cables and power lines operate under the sovereignty and jurisdiction of the countries through which they pass; each country, through its state institutions, in its territory ensures border control, customs control and security of the infrastructures, including the passage through its territory of vehicles, cargo and people; All infrastructures can be used for both international and domestic transportation; countries use all the infrastructures on the basis of reciprocity and equality, and in accordance with these principles border and customs controls can be facilitated through mutual consent and agreement. As missing sections of railways and roads are restored and infrastructures unlocked, it will become possible to establish a seamless connection between the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman, the Black Sea, the Caspian Sea and the Mediterranean Sea via a consolidated, regional railway network and via the North-South and East-West roads. The Government of the Republic of Armenia reaffirms its commitment to contribute its share to the region’s peace and stability, and to make practical measures to build the Crossroads of Peace.

Armenian Speaker of Parliament won’t attend CSTO event


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 22, ARMENPRESS. Speaker of Parliament Alen Simonyan has said he won’t participate in an upcoming CSTO event scheduled to take place in December.

“I have informed my CSTO colleagues that I will not participate in that given event, and there’s been no answer from them so far and I don’t think there will be. I am sure that the reasons of my non-participation are clear for them,” Simonyan said, adding that this doesn’t mean that relations with the organization are being frozen.

He said that Armenia has no decision to withdraw from CSTO.

“But I think that in the current situation my participation in the given event would be inappropriate. And the situation is such that the CSTO hasn’t been fulfilling its obligations,” the Speaker said.

Authorities open criminal case regarding YSU blast


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 17, ARMENPRESS. The Investigative Committee opened a criminal investigation into the deadly explosion that occurred in the basement of the Chemistry Faculty of Yerevan State University on November 17.

In a statement, the law enforcement agency said the victim of the blast who died was 73 years old. It did not release the victims’ identities. His body was found in the basement where the fire and blast occurred.

Three others, including a responding police officer, were injured.

The police officer is hospitalized for smoke inhalation. The two other victims, who the YSU identified as their workers, 70 and 66 years old, are being treated for burns at a hospital.

The criminal investigation was opened under paragraph 2, article 355 of the Criminal Code (aggravated violation of safety requirements in construction or other works leading to death or serious injury), as well as paragraph 2, article 357 (aggravated violation of fire safety requirements leading to death or serious injury).

Investigators are working at the scene.

Armenia PM defends move to hike military budget

Nigeria – Nov 16 2023

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Thursday defended Yerevan’s decision to increase military spending next year, saying he was still committed to normalisation talks with arch foe Azerbaijan.

Baku and Yerevan have been locked in a decades-long territorial conflict over Azerbaijan’s Armenian-populated region of Nagorno-Karabakh, which Baku reclaimed in September in a lightning offensive.

Addressing lawmakers in Yerevan, Pashinyan said his government’s planned increase in defence spending by some seven percent next year “isn’t a preparation for war, but rather a preparation for peace.”

“I am confident, our neighbouring countries know it well that we are not going to attack anyone,” he said.

“Reforming armed forces is not only a right, but also an obligation of an independent country and that’s what we are doing.”

He also said that Yerevan’s “political will to sign, in the coming months, a peace agreement with Azerbaijan remains unwavering.”

Internationally mediated normalisation talks between the ex-Soviet republics have seen little progress but both Pashinyan and Azerbaijan’s Ilham Aliyev pledged to sign a comprehensive peace agreement by the end of the year.

The pair have held several rounds of talks under EU mediation.

But last month, Aliyev refused to attend a round of negotiations with Pashinyan in Spain, over what he said was the “biased position” of one of the participants, France.

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had been scheduled to join EU-chief Charles Michel as mediators at those talks.

So far, there has been no visible progress in EU efforts to organise a fresh round of negotiations.

Russia, the traditional power-broker in the region, has been bogged down in its war in Ukraine and Europe has taken a lead role in mediating the decades-long dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan.


Central Bank of Armenia: exchange rates and prices of precious metals – 08-11-23

 17:09, 8 November 2023

YEREVAN, 8 NOVEMBER, ARMENPRESS. The Central Bank of Armenia informs “Armenpress” that today, 8 November, USD exchange rate down by 0.15 drams to 402.51 drams. EUR exchange rate down by 0.56 drams to 429.48 drams. Russian Ruble exchange rate up by 0.01 drams to 4.37 drams. GBP exchange rate down by 1.75 drams to 493.36 drams.

The Central Bank has set the following prices for precious metals.

Gold price down by 318.86 drams to 25373.41 drams. Silver price down by 8.84 drams to 291.63 drams.

The Haunting 100-year Parallel Between Greeks and Armenians

Nov 7 2023
The destruction of Smyrna and the haunting parallels with the erasing of the entire 
120,000-plus Armenian community of Karabakh. Public Domain

2023 marks the centennial of the Treaty of Lausanne, which efficiently ended the last traces of Greeks in Asia Minor and the Armenians in Artsakh.

By Julian McBride

2023 marks the centennial of the Treaty of Lausanne, which efficiently ended the last traces of Greek civilization and Hellenism in Eastern Thrace and Asia Minor. This centennial has brought trauma for many descendants of the Eastern Thrace and Asia Minor Greek communities who suffered from a genocide overlooked by the entire world.

Today, another ancient civilization has ended as Azerbaijan completed its mission with the erasing of the entire 120,000-plus Armenian community of Karabakh along with the few handfuls of Greeks that lived there in Mehmana.

Much to the ire of the international community, Azerbaijan recently conducted a lightning campaign to finish off the remaining Armenian militias in the Karabakh region. The military campaign forced 120,000 plus Armenians to flee, fearing massacres such as sexual assaults and beheadings documented by global NGOs such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and various media organizations.

The fall of Armenian civilization in the Nagorno-Karabakh region marks the end of 3,000 plus years of history in which Armenians endured various empires that often passed through the area from the Assyrians, Greek Macedonians, Romans, Persians, Arabs, Mongols, Ottomans, and Russians.

2023 brings scars to Armenians and Greeks, as the descendants of Hellenes from Eastern Thrace and Asia Minor commemorate a hundred years of forced population transfer under the Lausanne Treaty. In the aftermath of the disastrous Asia Minor campaign, the majority of Greeks in Asia Minor fled in lieu of massacres, which culminated in the Great Fire of Smyrna, known as the final act of the Greek genocide.

The remaining Greeks of Nicomedia, Cappadocia, Smyrna, Adrianople, Caesarea, and other places were transferred to the Hellenic Kingdom in return for the Turks of Crete. Only the Greeks of Constantinople were spared until the Istanbul pogrom of 1955.

Despite claiming to ‘keep the peace,’ the international community and great powers ultimately failed the Karabakh Armenians and Anatolian Greeks.

Russia’s hybrid warfare tactics and disassociating their obligations as ‘peacekeepers’ left the Armenians vulnerable to attack by Azerbaijan with no other true allies coming to aid. As British military support waned, Vladimir Lenin would fuel the Kemalists with Russian weaponry in the Greco-Turkish War.

Western nations have placated Azerbaijan’s genocidal ambitions with gas deals, with examples including the European Union. Likewise, great powers who won WWI, such as the UK, France, Italy, and the US, watched as hundreds of thousands of Greeks were slaughtered in

Smyrna and refused to intervene on their ships to save them because they saw Mustafa Kemal as a new partner in the Western fold.

The Treaty of Lausanne, which replaced the Treaty of Sevres, not only consolidated the Kemalist gains and formed the Turkish Republic, but Greeks were forced to leave regions that weren’t won in the war, such as Eastern Thrace and Northern Epirus.

The trilateral treaty between Armenia, Russia, and Azerbaijan also sealed the fate of Karabakh Armenians. Armenia was forced to cede districts in Karabakh that weren’t lost in 2020, such as Hadrut, and ultimately, the Artsakh Armenians were left at the mercy of a failing Russian peacekeeping mission and the brutal Azerbaijani state.

Smyrna’s destruction and tragedy represented the cataclysmic end of the Greco-Turkish War and the nail in the coffin of 3,000 years of Hellenism in Asia Minor. Smyrna was one of the starting points of Mycenean migration post Bronze Age Collapse, which started millennia of Greek heritage throughout Anatolia.

The ethnic cleansing of Artsakh also represents millennia of Armenian history in the region. Azerbaijan, internationally condemned for cultural genocide in Nakhichevan, will most likely replicate the despicable acts of heritage erasure in Karabakh.

Turkification and forcible assimilation have played a role in the region, and with Erdogan and Aliyev having a greater geopolitical agenda for pan-Turkism, Armenia is now the sole factor in their way of achieving the final goal.

Akin to the Greek Genocide and destruction of Hellenism in Asia Minor and Eastern Thrace, the world has also glossed over the plight of Armenians in Artsakh, who only wanted to live in self-determination away from a genocidal dictatorship akin to the Anatolian Greeks. Today, we say farewell to Anatolia and Artsakh—two ancient civilizations the world glossed over.