US Embassy in Armenia joins in mourning victims of 1988 Sumgait tragedy


YEREVAN, FEBRUARY 27, ARMENPRESS.  Today, we join with Armenians mourning all who were killed in Sumgait in 1988, the US Embassy in Armenia  said in a statement issued Tuesday.

“Our deepest sympathy rests with the families of those killed, injured, and displaced. We will continue to work for peace in the region, so such tragedies will not be repeated,” the embassy added.

Armenian Foreign Ministry comments on reports about Zelenskyy’s possible visit


YEREVAN, FEBRUARY 24, ARMENPRESS. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia has commented on the news that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is reportedly planning to visit Armenia.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ani Badalyan neither confirmed nor denied the report.

“I can say that we officially inform about high-level visits in proper timeframes,” Badalyan told Armenpress when asked on the reports.


According to recent media reports, Zelenskyy plans to visit Armenia and Azerbaijan in March. The Armenia trip is reportedly planned to take place on March 4.

Armenia Signs Defense Deals with France to Purchase Rifles

WE News, Pakistan
Feb 23 2024

YEREVAN: In order to reduce dependency on Russia, Armenia singed arms deal with France to purchase arms, said Armenia Defense Ministry on Friday.  Under the agreement, the France will supply precision rifles to Armenia and provide training to Armenian military officers.

Addressing a press conference along with his French counterpart, Armenian Defense Minister Suren Papikian said that Armenia has finalized a contract with the French arms manufacturer PGM for the purchase of these rifles.

With recent conflicts erupting with neighboring Azerbaijan, Armenia has been actively seeking to enhance its defense capabilities. “Armenia is committed to modernizing its armed forces, utilizing both its own resources and support from allied nations,” stated Papikian. “Our goal is to leverage all available means to safeguard our borders.”

While the specifics of the deal were not disclosed, the two nations also sealed an agreement for France to train five Armenian soldiers at its prestigious Saint Cyr Coetquidan military academy, with an additional offer to assist in training non-commissioned officers.

French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu emphasized France’s commitment to Armenia’s defense, announcing the deployment of a military adviser specializing in ground-based air defense systems. This move aims to bolster Armenia’s ability to counter potential threats and safeguard civilian populations from attacks.

Highlighting Armenia’s pursuit of reliable security partners, Lecornu addressed concerns over strained relations between Yerevan and Moscow, its traditional ally. His visit to Yerevan, accompanied by members of parliament and defense industry representatives, comes at a time of escalating tensions between Armenia and Russia, particularly regarding Moscow’s perceived inaction during Armenia’s conflicts with Azerbaijan.

France’s involvement in the region, underscored by a significant Armenian diaspora, has led to its mediation efforts in the longstanding dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh. The recent sale of defense equipment to Armenia by France, announced in October 2023, drew ire from Azerbaijan, especially following Baku’s capture of the Nagorno-Karabakh region from Armenian separatists. This event led to the displacement of around 100,000 Armenians.

EU Ambassador to Armenia Vassilis Maragos confirms ongoing efforts on visa liberalization


YEREVAN, FEBRUARY 21, ARMENPRESS.  The work towards liberalization of EU visas for Armenia will continue, the Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Armenia, Ambassador Vassilis Maragos said at the press conference organized on the occasion of the first anniversary of the EU Mission in Armenia.

"We are firmly committed to resolving this issue. It is necessary that all member states support it so that we can move forward. We understand that the liberalization of visas is a priority for the Armenian authorities and citizens of Armenia," said Maragos.

The Ambassador noted that last week EU High Representative Borell and Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan in Brussels  launched a new initiative to promote a new partnership agenda.

"This issue is being considered within the same context. Work in this direction will continue. However, we need to ensure that all the member states are in agreement on this matter," he said.

Kazakhstan sent $2.5 million worth of milk and dairy products to Armenia in 2023

Dairy News
Feb 20 2024
The export of Kazakhstani goods to Armenia increased by 6.1%, but the volume remains relatively small at 7.1 thousand tons (worth $33.3 million). Import from Armenia also grew by 19.8% to 3.1 thousand tons, or $19.7 million.
Regarding other EAEU countries, it is noted that in 2023, 46.1 thousand tons of milk and dairy products worth $22.9 million were imported from Kyrgyzstan to Kazakhstan, marking a 1.5-fold increase compared to the previous year.

In 2023, Kazakhstan purchased 35.1 thousand tons of milk and dairy products from Belarus, amounting to a total of $98.7 million, reflecting a 9.2% reduction in supplies.

It was previously reported that milk production volumes in 2023 increased by 3% in all EAEU countries except Armenia.

Armenia welcomes Iran-made pharmaceutical products

Iran – Feb 17 2024
  1. Society
– 13:49

TEHRAN – The Armenian deputy health minister has announced the country’s willingness to import Iranian medicine and medical equipment.

Talking about the remarkable achievements of Iran in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak by adopting appropriate measures, Lena Nanushyan said that Iran's progress in the field of health is significant, ISNA reported.

She made the remarks in a meeting with Heidar Mohammadi, the head of Iran’s Food and Drug Administration on the sidelines of the 18th session of the Iran-Armenia Joint Economic Committee that was held in Tehran during February 14-15.

At the end of the meeting, the two sides signed 19 documents and memorandums of understanding (MOUs) to enhance cooperation in various areas.

The mentioned documents covered a variety of areas including trade, maritime transportation, food, medicine, and customs cooperation.

Noting that Iranian pharmaceutical products are famous worldwide, she said that Armenia has yet to import the products, she added.

Referring to the quality of anti-cancer drugs manufactured in Iran, she said, “We are interested in using Iranian oncology drugs in Armenia, and it is also possible to supply part of the required drugs of the country from Iranian manufacturing companies.”

Nanushyan went on to say, “We are happy to sign an agreement to expand cooperation between the two countries in the field of medicine and medical equipment.”

She further noted once Iranian medicines are registered in Eurasia, it will be much easier to import medicines from Iran.

Nanushyan also voiced the country's readiness to hold an exhibition of Iranian-made medical products in Armenia.

The head of Iran’s Food and Drug Administration, Heidar Mohammadi, for his part, referred to the production of biotech medicines, which has few manufacturers worldwide, in the country as a competitive factor of Iran-made medicines.

The pharmaceutical industry in Iran has grown significantly after the (1979) Islamic Revolution, he said.

Mohammadi went on to say that currently, all medical supplements and some 99 percent of the country's pharmaceutical needs is produced domestically.

Also, over 50 percent of medical equipment is produced in the country and they are exported to foreign markets, he added.

Over 60 countries import Iranian medical equipment

On January 13, the head of Iran’s Union of Medical Equipment Manufacturers and Exporters said that medical equipment worth around $20 million is exported to more than 60 countries annually.

More than 70 percent of medical equipment and 100 percent of normal hospital beds are domestically made, IRNA quoted Abdolreza Yaqoubzadeh as saying.

Also, over 95 percent of specific ICU and CCU beds and more than 85 percent of operating room medical equipment such as anesthesia machines and other equipment are manufactured with cutting-edge technology in the country, he added.

Yaqoubzadeh went on to say that the country's need for medical equipment production is three to four billion dollars per year, some one billion dollars of which is imported.

Export of medicine and medical equipment rise

Iran experienced a significant rise in exports of medicine and medical equipment in the first four months of the current Iranian calendar year that started on March 21, 2023.

“Exports of pharmaceuticals and medical equipment grew by 300 percent in the first four months of the year,” IRNA quoted Mohammadi as saying.

Currently, the production of medicine, medical equipment, and powdered milk is supported by subsidies. So, their exports were very limited, but it is hoped that their exports will increase next year, he explained.

Referring to the shortage of 100 drug items in the country, he said: “Nearly one and a half percent of the country's pharmaceutical need is imported. Along with domestic production, it is done as soon as the domestic production meets the demand.”

A total of 227 knowledge-based firms are supplying medical equipment for health centers across the country, according to the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology.


Yerevan, NATO Discuss Furthering Cooperation

Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan meets with NATO's Caucasus representative Javier Colomina in Brussels on Feb. 14

Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan on Wednesday met with NATO’s Special Representative to the Caucasus Javier Colomina in Brussels and discussed further cooperation between Yerevan and the U.S.-led security bloc.

According to Armenia’s foreign ministry, Mirzoyan reiterated Armenia’s vision for overcoming existing challenges, based on well-known principles. The efforts aimed at further enhancing the Armenia-NATO partnership were touched upon.”

The two also touched on regional developments and attempts to destabilize the situation, presumably following Azerbaijan’s attack on Syunik on Tuesday, during which four Armenian soldiers were killed and another was wounded.

Last month Colomina praised Armenia’s partnership with NATO, angering Russia, which quickly said NATO and the West could not be trusted.

After Colomina’s praise of Armenia, in an interview with Armenpress late last month, Moscow warned Yerevan that its recent efforts to forge close relations with NATO and the West might not yield the desired results, saying history has shown that those seeking rapprochement with NATO risk losing their sovereignty and independence.

“We are very encouraged by the decisions that Armenia has decided to take in their foreign policy and defense policy, the shift they have decided to implement,” Colomina told Armenpress.

He also said that Armenia’s decision to become closer with NATO “is difficult to implement and will probably take a long time, but, of course, we encourage our partners to get closer to us, and that is what Armenia is doing.”

Moscow was quick to respond, underscoring that NATO and the United States are not trustworthy allies and said historically those nations that have forged alliances with them have wound up on the losing side, given that “in the last 30 to 40 years” NATO and the U.S. have not fulfilled their promises to their allied nations.

Armenia sees India, France as its key partners in defense sphere — defense minister

TASS, Russia
Jan 2 2024
According to the minister Suren Papikyan, the diversification process is irreversible

YEREVAN, February 2. /TASS/. Armenia considers India and France as its key partners in the defense sphere, Armenian Defense Minister Suren Papikyan said.

"In the process of the diversification of weapons purchases, we have acquired new partners and established relations with many superpowers. In particular, India and France have become our main partners in the defense sphere," he said in an interview with Armenia’s Public Television.

According to the minister, the diversification process is irreversible. He that the country’s new contracts and reforms would have a positive effect on the quality of the country’s weapons.

PM Pashinyan, Markéta Pekarová exchange ideas on the prospect of establishing sustainable peace in the region


YEREVAN, JANUARY 31, ARMENPRESS. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan hosted the delegation led by the Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic Markéta Pekarová.

In a readout, the Prime Minister's Office said that Nikol Pashinyan attached importance to Mrs. Pekarová's visit to our country and emphasized the importance of continuous development of Armenia-Czech Republic relations. In this regard, Nikol Pashinyan noted that bilateral high-level mutual visits give a new impetus to interaction and contribute to the expansion of relations.

The Prime Minister also emphasized the importance of close parliamentary cooperation, including within the framework of international organizations.

According to the source, Markéta Pekarová emphasized that her country also attaches great importance to multi-sectoral cooperation with Armenia and noted that Prime Minister Pashinyan's official visit to the Czech Republic in 2023 contributed to its development.

The interlocutors discussed a number of issues related to the agenda of Armenia-Czech relations, aimed at expanding political, economic, humanitarian ties and joint projects.

It is noted that the sides exchanged ideas on the prospect of establishing security and sustainable peace in the region. The Prime Minister emphasized the key approaches of the Republic of Armenia.