Armenian Defense Minister departs for Georgia on official visit

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 11:05, 4 May, 2022

YEREVAN, MAY 4, ARMENPRESS. Minister of Defense of Armenia Suren Papikyan departed for Georgia today, the ministry said in a statement.

“At the invitation of Georgian Minister of Defense Juansher Burchuladze, Minister of Defense of Armenia Suren Papikyan departed for Georgia on May 4 on a two-day official visit”, the statement said.

Recently Armenian Justice Minister Karen Andreasyan and Secretary of the Security Council Armen Grigoryan also visited Georgia.

Armenian FM participates as keynote speaker in discussion at Atlantic Council think tank

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 09:41, 5 May, 2022

YEREVAN, MAY 5, ARMENPRESS. On May 4, Foreign Minister of Armenia Ararat Mirzoyan, who is in the United States on a working visit, participated as a keynote speaker in a roundtable discussion held at the prestigious US think tank – Atlantic Council, the foreign ministry said in a news release.

The Foreign Minister of Armenia touched upon the main agenda and emphases of the working visit to the USA, the Armenia-US Strategic Dialogue, the documents signed during the visit and the prospects of the development of the Armenian-American relations.

Reference was made to the process of reforms aimed at democratic development, protection of human rights, strengthening the rule of law and the fight against corruption.

Ararat Mirzoyan presented the situation around the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, Armenia's position on the negotiations on a comprehensive peace agreement with Azerbaijan, and the role of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairmanship in these processes.

The humanitarian issues resulting from the 44-day war and need to be urgently addressed were presented.

During the meeting reference was also made to the process of normalization of relations between Armenia and Turkey.

Food: Gray and Gray is hosting an Armenian takeover by Tom Sarafian

Australia – May 6 2022
 May 6 2022 at 4:56 PM


Chef and condiment king, Tom Sarafian, is about to embark on a two-and-a-half week residency at Gray and Gray Bread and Wine in Northcote, cooking the food of his Armenian heritage with a focus on autumn flavours.

From May 12 to 29, Sarafian will flip the restaurant's menu from Georgian and Russian fare into the food of his father's family, headlined by quince-glazed suckling pig cooked over charcoal with smoked chestnuts.

The 14-dish feast is an all-new menu for Sarafian. It opens with a fleet of six mezze, then moves on to tiny mante (dumplings) that Sarafian's grandmother used to make. Baked in the oven and finished with warm tomato sauce, their final texture is similar to a pot-sticker, with one crunchy side and one steamed side.

"These are things I've wanted to cook for a long time and haven't found the right place or time," says Sarafian. "But Gray and Gray feels like the perfect place to do that [because] of Boris's knowledge when it comes to that kind of food."Armenia shares a border with Georgia, a touchpoint of Gray & Gray's menu, thanks to co-owner Boris Portnoy's time there making wine.

The drinks list will celebrate Armenia's 6000-year-old culture of fermented drinks, which stretches nearly as far back as Georgia's.

May 12-29, Wed-Sat from 6pm, Sun from noon.

Gray and Gray Bread and Wine, 188 High Street, Northcote; $80 for four courses (pescatarian and vegetarian menus available), 0434 618 331, breadandwine.com.au


Sports: Armenian National Championships To Determine National Team For Upcoming IMMAF Events

May 5 2022

(MENAFN- International Mixed Martial Arts Federation)

From May 7-8, the Armenian MMA Federation will host its 2022 National Championships. The tournament will take place at the Dynamo Arena in Yerevan, Armenia. Youth categories A, B and C will take place along with a senior tournament. 

The competition will determine a national team for Armenia that will aim to compete in the upcoming IMMAF tournaments. The Armenian Federation held its first tournament since the Covid lockdown was lifted in May of last year. They have been actively working on the development of the sport since. 

Armenia actively competed in IMMAF competition in 2021, building on their first-ever IMMAF appearance in 2019. They had three entries at the 2021 Youth World Championships, as well as two entries at the European Championships in Arman Avanesyan and Levon Tsatryan .

Speaking ahead of the event, Armenia MMA Federation's President, Garegin Aghabalyan, explained the importance of the event. 

“This is going to be the pivotal event of the year. The result of it will lead us to create a national team for all ages. We expect many participants as MMA gets more and more popular in Armenia. We'll create a strong national team to participate in Youth World's, European and subsequently World Championships.”

MENAFN05052022006291013655ID1104165520

Expert: Ukraine cannot have any expectations from Armenia in legal and moral terms

Panorama
Armenia – May 5 2022

The Defense Intelligence of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense has accused Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan of negotiating with Moscow over the re-export of Russian products to international markets.

“The supply is planned to be made in the form of Georgian, Armenian and Azerbaijani products and export them to third countries,” the Defense Intelligence said on May 1.

Panorama.am has spoken with military expert and reserve colonel Hayk Nahapetyan over the matter as well as the legal and moral aspects of Ukraine's expectations from Armenia in the process of imposing sanctions on Russia.

Hayk Nahapetyan: We should look at things from the legal perspective. Ukraine is complaining that individual entrepreneurs or legal entities engaged in economic activities have opened such enterprises in Armenia under domestic laws, isn’t it? That is, what law has been violated? No law has been broken. It is no coincidence that such a statement was issued by the Defense Intelligence. Because if the Armenian side had undertaken some commitments and had violated them, the Ukrainian diplomatic corps and political institutions would have reacted somehow apart from the intelligence office. But Armenia has not violated any agreement. Georgian Parliament Speaker Shalva Papuashvili has also demanded explanations from the Ukrainian authorities over the country’s accusations, asking it to provide evidence. If the Ukrainian side had substantiated evidence, I believe it would have used it first for propaganda instead of just making a statement.

The world has seen such precedents when the intelligence provided inaccurate information to the military and political leadership, as a result of which an entire country and its people suffered, with hundreds of thousands of casualties. Take, for example, the display of a small bottle by first black U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell when Iraq was actually invaded by NATO, and then it turned out that Colin Powell and the U.S. military and political leadership had been provided with inaccurate information about the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq by intelligence. That is, intelligence reports cannot serve as a basis and are not enough. But there is a moral aspect of the issue. From the legal terms, they can't substantiate that Armenia or Georgia have violated any verbal or contractual commitments.

The moral aspect is that Ukraine dares to interfere in the internal affairs of our country. It is for Armenia to decide what kind of relations to establish with a specific country in accordance with the agreements Armenia signed about 30 years ago.

Ukraine, no less, is laying out demands for Armenia, when Armenia has not made such a commitment. Armenia and Georgia did not join the sanctions [against Russia] and it is up to the authorities of the two countries to decide on the matter.

Ukraine would be better off dealing with its internal problems, rather than pointing fingers at who and why did not join the sanctions. As if the planet Earth now moves around Ukraine, and they believe that any state that does not help them, at the very least, is not their friend, if not an enemy.

In essence, I understand that the rule of the Nazi authorities in Ukraine is coming to an end, it is not far off and they are already in agony. They are blaming everyone, including NATO, the U.S., EU countries, and now some allegations are made against the three South Caucasus countries. This state of mind makes them look for others to blame for their own woes and defeats. I understand their feelings; we Armenians are also living through such times. Instead of acknowledging their mistakes and correcting them, our authorities are looking for the guilty outside the country. This is also the case in Ukraine.

Panorama.am: Against the background of the position on the Artsakh issue expressed by Ukraine for decades and especially during the 44-day war, does Ukraine have any moral right to expect Armenia to take a position in its favor? Moreover, after all this the Armenian authorities seem to have taken a neutral stance on the conflict.

Hayk Nahapetyan: Ukraine’s military and political leadership, law enforcement authorities and Security Council still stick to their position. When Azerbaijan occupied certain heights on Karaghlukh and Khramort, the Ukrainian top leadership was excited by the fact that Azerbaijan was about to start military operations against Artsakh, which would entail military actions against Russia, because the guarantor of the Artsakh people’s security is the Russian peacekeeping mission. They hoped that if such operations began, they could escalate into an Armenian-Azerbaijani war, thus a second front would open for Russia. They were extremely enthusiastic and made statements at the level of the heads of security agencies as well as members of the Rada.

Ukraine adheres to the following principle: the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Obviously, during the 44-day war and up to present Ukraine is trying to support Azerbaijan. Incidentally, before the well-known events of February 24, the Azeri president visited Kyiv and held a meeting with Volodymyr Zelensky. A memorandum was signed, according to which Azerbaijan and Ukraine, to a certain extent, mutually undertook obligations to each other in case of violation of the territorial integrity of the two countries. They recognized each other's territorial integrity when they joined the UN. Azerbaijan also recognized Crimea as a part of Ukraine in principle, let alone Donetsk and Luhansk. In the same way, Ukraine recognized the Republic of Artsakh as a part of Azerbaijan. An agreement was also signed on military and technical cooperation. They are allies and have common handlers in the person of Turkey, UK and the United States. Naturally, Ukraine’s stance on the self-determination of the Artsakh Armenians and the independence of Artsakh is extremely negative.

Panorama.am: Some reports suggest that Ukraine also provided Azerbaijan with banned weapons which were used in the 44-day war. How would you comment on it?

Hayk Nahapetyan: I can neither confirm nor deny the reports that the cluster phosphorus weapons were supplied [to Azerbaijan] by Ukraine, but it has not been disproved. It is a fact that after Ukraine declared its independence in 1991 it inherited the lion's share of the military-industrial complex of the USSR. It was clearly in its interest to arm a state that was at least in unfriendly relations with Russia. Such military and technical assistance has been provided for years.

Military and technical cooperation is not prohibited by law, but the problem lies with weapons of mass destruction, phosphorus and cluster munitions banned by several international conventions, while the countries using them could face sanctions, just as Iraq was accused of developing chemical weapons and punished by NATO.

Here we have to look at whether such prohibited weapons that Ukraine had were sold to Azerbaijan. Some say that the phosphorus munitions were provided [to Azerbaijan] by Ukraine. At least there is no production of these weapons in Azerbaijan, otherwise other sources would have spoken about it.

Interview by A. Vardanyan



Opposition MP: Overwhelming majority of Armenians realize what this struggle is about

Panorama
Armenia – May 5 2022

Nikol Pashinyan is pretending that he has nothing to do with what that is happening in Armenia, MP Tigran Abrahamyan of the opposition With Honor faction told reporters during a march on Thursday.

His comments came as mass anti-government protests in Armenia entered the fifth day on Thursday.

He lawmaker accused Pashinyan of repeatedly trying to shift the responsibility for his administration’s failures onto others.

He also denounced the authorities’ proposal on a mirror withdrawal of troops from the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, saying it would create new problems in different parts of Armenia.

Abrahamyan states that Pashinyan's ouster is solely aimed at stopping the cycle of mounting threats and creating opportunities for Armenia and Artsakh to strengthen and develop as well as ensuring the physical existence of Armenians in the region.

"The ongoing struggle is for the physical existence of Armenians in the region," he noted.

“The overwhelming majority of people realize what this struggle is about and the actions of provocateurs controlled by the incumbent authorities are aimed at discrediting the movement,” Abrahamyan said.

Turkey, Armenia Special Envoys on Normalization Meet in Vienna

The Armenia-Azerbaijan border

Istanbul Patriarch Says Artsakh part of the Ankara-Yerevan Normalization Package

Special envoys for normalizing relations between Armenia and Turkey, Ruben Rubinyan and Serdar Kılıç held their third meeting in Vienna on Tuesday.

Following the meeting the two foreign ministries issued identical announcement expressing their countries’ commitment to the process.

“The Special Representatives reaffirmed the declared goal of achieving full normalization between their respective countries through this process. In this sense, they had sincere and productive exchange of concrete views and discussed possible steps that can be undertaken for tangible progress in this direction,” said the statement. “They reiterated their agreement to continue the process without preconditions.”

Since the last meeting in Vienna in February, Armenia’s Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan traveled to Turkey and attended a diplomatic conference in Antalya.

Following the first meeting in Moscow in January, the sides committed to advancing relation “without preconditions.”

Official Yerevan has signaled that it wants to open the borders with Turkey and establish diplomatic relations.

While Ankara has echoed similar sentiments, its leaders have stepped up their calls urging Armenia to recognize Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity—including Artsakh. On April 23, Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu flashed the hand gesture used by the ultra-nationalist Grey Wolves to a group of Armenian protesters in Montevideo, Uruguay, where he was on an official visit.

In an interview with RFE/RL’s Armenian Service, the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul Archbishop Sahag Mashalian said that Turkey wants a resolution from Armenia, suggesting that such a package also includes the settlement of the Artsakh conflict.

He said that although the Turkey-Armenia talks are proceeding between representatives from the two countries, however, in reality there are four countries, including Azerbaijan and Turkey.

“This is not just about Armenia-Turkey relation,” Mashalian told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service.

[see video]

Turkey, Armenia Special Envoys on Normalization Meet in Vienna

The Armenia-Azerbaijan border

Istanbul Patriarch Says Artsakh part of the Ankara-Yerevan Normalization Package

Special envoys for normalizing relations between Armenia and Turkey, Ruben Rubinyan and Serdar Kılıç held their third meeting in Vienna on Tuesday.

Following the meeting the two foreign ministries issued identical announcement expressing their countries’ commitment to the process.

“The Special Representatives reaffirmed the declared goal of achieving full normalization between their respective countries through this process. In this sense, they had sincere and productive exchange of concrete views and discussed possible steps that can be undertaken for tangible progress in this direction,” said the statement. “They reiterated their agreement to continue the process without preconditions.”

Since the last meeting in Vienna in February, Armenia’s Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan traveled to Turkey and attended a diplomatic conference in Antalya.

Following the first meeting in Moscow in January, the sides committed to advancing relation “without preconditions.”

Official Yerevan has signaled that it wants to open the borders with Turkey and establish diplomatic relations.

While Ankara has echoed similar sentiments, its leaders have stepped up their calls urging Armenia to recognize Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity—including Artsakh. On April 23, Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu flashed the hand gesture used by the ultra-nationalist Grey Wolves to a group of Armenian protesters in Montevideo, Uruguay, where he was on an official visit.

In an interview with RFE/RL’s Armenian Service, the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul Archbishop Sahag Mashalian said that Turkey wants a resolution from Armenia, suggesting that such a package also includes the settlement of the Artsakh conflict.

He said that although the Turkey-Armenia talks are proceeding between representatives from the two countries, however, in reality there are four countries, including Azerbaijan and Turkey.

“This is not just about Armenia-Turkey relation,” Mashalian told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service.

[see video]

AP: Armenian authorities block roads, warn anti-govt protesters

May 4 2022

Authorities have blocked streets in Armenia’s capital and warned anti-government protesters against trying to seize the country’s parliament building

YEREVAN, Armenia — Authorities blocked streets in Armenia's capital Wednesday and warned anti-government protesters against trying to seize the country’s parliament building as they demonstrated to demand the prime minister's resignation.

Police used cement mixers and trucks to close off roads and bridges leading to the center of Yerevan as demonstrators chanted, “Armenia without Nikol,” referring to Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan.

The protesters, meanwhile, used cars to block the area around pedestrian underground passageways at major intersections. They marched in at least 10 directions.

“We can speak with the authorities about only one thing – their immediate departure,” Ishkhan Saghatelyan, vice president of the country's parliament, the National Assembly of Armenia. He also is chair of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation's Supreme Council.

Police arrested some of the protesters, and security officials warned them against trying to storm the parliament building. Pashinyan was scheduled to speak to parliament on Wednesday.

Anti-government demonstrations have taken place almost daily since April 17. The prime minister became a renewed target of rancor after he spoke in parliament about the need to sign a peace agreement with neighboring Azerbaijan.

The two countries have clashed for decades over the separatist region of Nagorno-Karabakh, which is part of Azerbaijan but has been under Armenian control since early 1990s. During a six-week war in 2020, Azerbaijan reclaimed control over some of the region before signing a Russia-brokered truce with Armenia.

https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/armenian-authorities-block-roads-warn-anti-govt-protesters-84494375

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https://www.lmtonline.com/news/article/Armenian-authorities-block-roads-warn-anti-govt-17147303.php