Armenpress: U.S. urges Azerbaijan to seek durable peace with Armenia

 10:14, 6 December 2023

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 6, ARMENPRESS. The U.S. continues to engage with Azerbaijan to urge them to seek a durable peace with Armenia, U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller has said.

Speaking at a press briefing, Miller said that Assistant Secretary of State James O’Brien’s upcoming trip to Azerbaijan doesn’t mean that the U.S. is backpedaling from its policy that, as O’Brien himself said earlier in November ‘nothing will be normal with Azerbaijan after the events of September 19 until we see progress on the peace track’.

“No, not at all,” Miller said when asked whether O’Brien’s trip is a departure from newly announced policy. “We never said that we’re not going to continue to engage with Azerbaijan. That would be against our interests as the United States of America. We think it would be against the interests of peace and security in the region for us to just drop all of our diplomatic engagements with Azerbaijan. We continue to engage directly with both Azerbaijan and Armenia to make clear – for example, in the case of Azerbaijan – where we have concerns. We’ve been concerned with the recent trend of detaining journalists. We continue to urge them to respect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all, something that I’ve spoken to from this podium in the past. And we also continue to engage with them to urge them to seek a durable peace with Armenia, and that’s something that will continue to be the focus of our diplomatic engagements.”

Miller added that human rights is always on the table for the United States of America when they have these sorts of diplomatic engagements.

Armenian Catholics inspire by their faith and resilience

Dec 7 2023
Viken Abassian, a seminarian preparing to serve the Armenian Catholic Church in the US, speaks about his faith journey and how it is tied to Armenian history.

“Despite our history enduring the longest night, I want the world to not see us as simply victims… I want them to see and be inspired by our resilience.”

These words of hope and strength about the Armenian Catholic Church come from someone who is himself a sign of hope — Viken Abassian, seminarian and subdeacon of the Our Lady of Nareg Armenian Catholic Eparchy of the US and Canada. He is the first American-born Armenian who has continued in his formation thus far as a seminarian for the Armenian Catholic Church in the United States.

Viken’s story of faith is inextricably tied not only to the persecution of the Armenian people, but also to the long history of Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Viken was born in the United States for the same reason as many Armenian Americans — because his family was fleeing persecution.

His ancestors came from Adana and Mersin in historical Armenia (modern-day Eastern Turkey). In order to survive genocide, his family sought refuge in both Lebanon and the Holy Land. He recounts that from Jerusalem, “They escaped the Holy Land with the growing radicalism and aggression between Israel and Palestine and came to the US to build a new life.”

The suffering of his Armenian people is not covered heavily by secular media, yet is a striking story of repeated injustice. In his own words, Viken shares:

The history of our nation is saturated with suffering, which has been provoked by ethnic and religious persecution from many empires who wished to either subjugate us or eradicate us altogether.

This persecution has taken the form of two genocides, over one hundred years apart, but both targeted at destroying Armenian Christians.

[First came] the 1915 Genocide (the first of the 20th century) perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire, which stripped 1.5 million souls from our people. The most recent is the ethnic cleansing by the Islamic regime of Azerbaijan. This country, which is a Soviet-Union fabricated state, initiated the cleansing of the ethnic majority of Armenians from the city of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabagh) over the past three years, affecting the lives of 120,000 people.

This aggression, he explains, is motivated by a desire to create a two-nation state. Christians’ only “crime” is existing in these ancient lands for thousands of years.

Yet, in the midst of terrible suffering, there are signs of God’s accompaniment of Armenian Catholics. Viken’s eparchy has been a recent development — it became an eparchy is 2005, after being established as a mission in 1896 and an Apostolic Exarchate in 1981.

Vocations, as in the Latin Rite, have suffered somewhat in the modern era. “These were tumultuous years for the Armenian people, enduring the recent genocide, and then the subsequent rebuilding of our diaspora nation. Besides our ‘infancy,’ we too have been combating militant atheism and modernism — be it in our motherland as a post-soviet country, or the diaspora facing the growing anti-religious sentiment in their cultures.”

But here Viken is, in his 8th year of studying in Rome, preparing to serve the Armenian Catholic Church in America as a priest. He came from a devout Catholic family and says that he has always been drawn to the priesthood. Where he grew up in Fresno, California, there wasn’t a local Armenian Catholic Church, so he assumed he would discern becoming a Roman Catholic priest. Yet, when he was ready to apply for seminary, he was told that as an Armenian Catholic, he’d need to seek a dispensation from the Armenian Catholic Bishop.

Instead, the bishop encouraged Viken to consider becoming a priest in the Armenian Catholic Church. “He encouraged me to put my trust in God and take the leap of faith. Thanks be to God; I took that chance.”

God-willing, Viken will serve the faithful, suffering Armenian people. The story of his people, and of the Armenian people, is a tragic one. At the same time, their hope and faith is incredibly strong. Viken touches on the reason for their faith:

Even though we have been confronted by countless legions sent by Satan to extinguish the light of Christ, we have always known that to truly be defeated is to abandon the Holy Cross. In humility, we wear Christ’s admonishment on our shoulders, “Fear not those who kill the body; rather fear him who can destroy the soul and body in hell.”

Senate Foreign Relations Chair Urges Blinken to Hold Baku Accountable for Violations in Artsakh

Senate Foreign Relations Committee chair Ben Cardin

Senate Foreign Relations Committee chair Ben Cardin sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken urging him to hold Azerbaijani president Ilham Aliyev’s regime accountable for ethnic cleansing in Nagorno-Karabakh and to continue the United States’ support for Armenians who were forced to flee the region, informed the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

“While terrible tragedies elsewhere have diverted the world’s attention, I write to ensure that we remain focused on holding the Aliyev regime accountable for its brazen campaign of ethnic cleansing in Nagorno-Karabakh and continue to support Armenians who were forced to flee,” Cardin, a Democrat from Maryland said.

“As you are well aware, in September 2023, President Ilham Aliyev launched a military campaign that drove around 100,000 Armenians out of their homes, and during which Azerbaijani forces reportedly killed and wounded civilians. These attacks were not only a clear violation of the November 2020 ceasefire but also reportedly involved heinous atrocities,” added the powerful committee chair.

“Prior to the military invasion, Azerbaijan was effectively imposing a humanitarian blockade on the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, preventing the delivery of food, medicine, and basic humanitarian supplies. Beyond the blockade, the State Department’s 2022 Human Right Report cites numerous reports of Azerbaijani forces committing extrajudicial killings of Armenians,” Cardin pointed out.

“Furthermore, both before and after September, Azerbaijan has continued its well-documented practice of seizing and destroying Armenian cultural property in areas it controls, in further pursuit of its efforts to erase Armenian history and culture,” emphasized the letter.

“While Azerbaijan thus far is abiding by the terms of the September 20, 2023 ceasefire, I remain deeply concerned that Azerbaijan could take further military action to achieve additional political gains, particularly in regards to the so-called Zangezour corridor,” Cardin stressed.

“I strongly encourage you to continue to work with international partners and organizations to support accountability for the Aliyev regime’s actions. Specifically, I would like to know what steps you have taken and plan to take regarding the following:

  • Supporting efforts to substantiate and collect evidence regarding the Aliyev regime’s potential commission of war crimes and other atrocities;
  • Holding Azerbaijani officials accountable for any such acts, including the application of potential sanctions and visa restrictions;
  • Urging appropriate international justice tribunals to pursue accountability for Azerbaijani officials;
  • Making clear to Azerbaijan that aggression against its neighbors is unacceptable;
  • Supporting Armenians displaced in the September 2023 assault,” highlighted Cardin.

“It is critically important that the United States continues our commitment to prevent the commission of atrocities, protect vulnerable civilians, and hold those responsible for atrocities accountable for their actions. We must send a clear message to those who believe they can operate with impunity,” Cardin concluded.

Armenian, U.S. security officials meet at White House

 11:05, 5 December 2023

YEREVAN, DECEMBER 5, ARMENPRESS. Secretary of the Security Council of Armenia, Armen Grigoryan, has met with U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan at the White House in Washington. 

Grigoryan and Sullivan discussed issues of mutual interest in the areas of security and the economy, and lauded the steady dynamics of development of Armenia-U.S. bilateral relations, Grigoryan’s office said in a readout.

The officials also discussed the regional security situation, and Secretary Grigoryan reiterated Armenia’s commitment to continue the Armenia-Azerbaijan normalization and peace process.

RFE/RL Armenian Service – 11/27/2023

                                        Monday, November 27, 2023

Russia Tightens Border Controls For Armenian Trucks
November 27, 2023
        • Narine Ghalechian
        • Shoghik Galstian

RUSSIA - Cars and heavy trucks are lined up near the Upper Lars border crossing 
with Georgia, November 21, 2023.

Hundreds of Armenian trucks were stuck at the main Russian-Georgian border 
crossing on Monday after Russia reportedly tightened import and export controls 
on them amid its unprecedented tensions with Armenia.

Truck drivers said that the Russian customs service is subjecting them to 
stricter sanitary and other checks, causing long lines of the heavy vehicles on 
both sides of the Upper Lars crossing vital for the Armenian economy.

“I’m stuck at Lars for a second day,” one driver told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service. 
“There is a problem with paperwork. It’s not just me but also other Armenian 

“According to our information, several trucks have already returned [to Armenia] 
and about 200 others are waiting in line,” Garnik Danielian, an opposition 
parliamentarian, wrote on Facebook.

Deputy Economy Minister Arman Khojoyan confirmed that Russian customs officers 
have turned away some of the Armenian trucks carrying goods for the Russian 
market. But he did not give any numbers.

“As the head of the State Revenue Committee told me yesterday, it’s not that 
they are turning away all goods or entire categories of goods,” he told 
reporters. “We also have cargo crossing the border.”

Khojoyan would not say whether he believes there is a political reason for the 
stricter border checks introduced by the Russians.

RUSSIA -- An Armenian truck passes through the newly expanded Upper Lars border 
crossing with Georgia, June 21, 2023.

Artur Khachatrian, another Armenian opposition lawmaker, suggested that Moscow 
is retaliating against Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s decision to boycott last 
week’s Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) summit in Minsk which 
highlighted a significant deterioration of Russian-Armenian relations.

“I think that Russia is sending certain messages [to Yerevan],” said 
Khachatrian. “Let’s acknowledge that this is not accidental.”

The truck driver, who did not want to be identified, also felt that he and his 
Armenian colleagues remain stuck at Upper Lars because of the tensions between 
Moscow and Yerevan.

“The [Armenian] government picked a fight with the Russians and the Russians are 
now retaliating in this way,” he said.

Russia is Armenia’s leading trading partner, accounting for more than one-third 
of the South Caucasus nation’s foreign trade. It has long been the main export 
market for Armenian agricultural products, prepared foodstuffs and alcoholic 

The total volume of Russian-Armenian trade, mainly carried out through Upper 
Lars, has skyrocketed since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting 
barrage of Western sanctions against Moscow.

Armenian entrepreneurs have taken advantage of those sanctions, re-exporting 
various goods manufactured in Western countries to Russia. This explains why 
Armenian exports to Russia nearly doubled to $2.6 billion in January-September 
this year.

Yerevan Won’t Rule Out CSTO Exit
November 27, 2023
        • Shoghik Galstian

Belarus - The presidents of Russia and other CSTO member states meet in Minsk, 
November 23, 2023.

Armenia could leave the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) due to 
the Russian-led alliance’s reluctance to openly support it in the conflict with 
Azerbaijan, a leading member of the ruling Civil Contract party said on Monday.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian also did not rule out such a possibility on 
Friday one day after boycotting a summit of the leaders of Russia and other CSTO 
member states held in Minsk. He again accused the CSTO of not honoring its 
security obligations to Armenia.

“There is a defined situation in which we would definitely leave [the CSTO,]” 
Gevorg Papoyan, the deputy chairman of Civil Contract’s governing board, told 
journalists. “We don’t have that situation yet.”

“But there is also a situation where we would definitely participate in those 
[CSTO] meetings. There is no such situation either,” he said, alluding to an 
effective freeze on Armenia’s participation in the alliance’s activities.

Papoyan did not specify those “situations.” Nor did he say if Pashinian’s 
government wants to obtain security guarantees from Western powers before 
officially reorienting Armenia’s towards the United States and the European 

The Russian Foreign Ministry accused Yerevan of planning such a reorientation in 
late September as tensions between the two longtime allies rose further 
following Azerbaijan’s military offensive in Nagorno-Karabakh which Moscow did 
not prevent, stop or even condemn.

In recent months, Pashinian has repeatedly said that the alliance with Russia 
cannot guarantee Armenia’s national security. His refusal to attend the CSTO 
summit in Minsk stoked speculation about the South Caucasus state’s imminent 
exit from the alliance.

Alen Simonian, the Armenian parliament speaker and another senior Civil Contract 
member, said last week that he will not attend an upcoming session of the CSTO’s 
Parliamentary Assembly.

CSTO Head Downplays Armenian Boycott Of Summit
November 27, 2023

Armenia - CSTO Secretary General Imangali Tasmagambetov at a meeting with 
Armenian Defense Minister Suren Papikian, Yerevan, March 16, 2023.

The secretary general of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) on 
Monday downplayed Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian’s refusal to attend last week’s 
summit of the leaders of ex-Soviet states making up the Russian-led military 

Imangali Tasmagambetov, who is due to visit Yerevan soon, claimed that Pashinian 
did not fly to Minsk for the summit last Thursday for merely “technical” reasons.

“In my view, it makes no sense to draw any categorical conclusions from this 
situation,” Tasmagambetov told the TASS news agency. “Armenia was and remains 
our ally.”

Pashinian’s boycott of the summit highlighted his government’s mounting tensions 
with the other CSTO member states and Russia in particular. Pashinian on Friday 
again accused the CSTO of not honoring its security commitments to Armenia. What 
is more, he did not rule out the possibility of eventually pulling his country 
out of his alliance.

Speaking on the eve of the Minsk summit, the Russian Foreign Ministry 
spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, said that Pashinian’s administration is planning a 
“radical change” of Armenia’s traditional geopolitical orientation at the behest 
of Western powers. The ministry had earlier accused it of “ruining” 
Russian-Armenian relations.

For his part, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov dismissed over the weekend the 
criticism of the CSTO voiced by Pashinian as well as other Armenian leaders. 
Peskov expressed hope that Yerevan will soon resume its “full-fledged 
participation in the organization.”

Earlier this year, Armenia also refused to participate in CSTO military 
exercises and boycotted a meeting of the defense ministers of the bloc’s member 

Armenian Authorities Seek To Dispossess Tsarukian
November 27, 2023
        • Naira Bulghadarian

Armenia - Prosperous Armenia Party leader Gagik Tsarukian speaks at an election 
campaign rally in Aragatsotn province, June 15, 2021.

The Armenian authorities have moved to confiscate hundreds of millions of 
dollars worth of assets belonging to Gagik Tsarukian, one of Armenia’s richest 
men leading a major opposition party.

The assets include the largest of Tsarukian’s companies and about 90 properties 
owned by him or members of his family. The authorities are also seeking to seize 
over 86 billion drams ($213 million) in revenue generated by them. All this may 
well account for most of the vast fortune made by the tycoon since the early 

The Office of the Prosecutor-General announced late last week that it has asked 
an Armenian court to approve the seizures in accordance with a controversial law 
that allows the authorities to confiscate assets deemed to have been acquired 
illegally. It said the court has already agreed to freeze them pending a verdict 
in the case.

A statement released by the law-enforcement agency did not publicize any 
evidence in support of its claims that Tsarukian and his family have amassed 
their wealth illegally. The tycoon’s lawyers were quick to reject the claims and 
insist that “the origin of Gagik Tsarukian’s assets is illegal.”

“There is weighty evidence of that, which will be presented to the court and the 
Office of the Prosecutor-General as soon as possible,” they said in a statement.

The lawyers declined to comment further when contacted by RFE/RL’s Armenian 
Service at the weekend. It thus remained unclear whether they see any political 
motives behind the case.

Armenia -- Prosperous Armenia Party leader Gagik Tsarukian arrives for a court 
hearing on his pre-trial arrest, September 25, 2020.

Tsarukian is the founding leader of the opposition Prosperous Armenia Party 
(BHK) that had the second largest group in the country’s former parliament. It 
challenged Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and demanded his resignation even 
before the 2020 war in Nagorno-Karabakh.

Tsarukian was charged with vote buying and arrested in September 2020 just days 
before the outbreak of the war. The BHK leader, who rejected the accusations as 
politically motivated, was freed on bail one month later.

Like other opposition groups, the BHK blamed Pashinian for Armenia’s defeat in 
the six-week war and tried to topple him. It failed to win any parliament seats 
in snap general elections held in June 2021. Tsarukian has kept a low profile 
since then.

The law invoked by the prosecutors allows them to seek asset forfeiture in case 
of having “sufficient grounds to suspect” that the market value of an 
individual’s properties exceeds their “legal income” by at least 50 million 
drams ($100,000). Armenian courts can allow the nationalization of such assets 
even if their owners are not found guilty of corruption or other criminal 

Over the past two years the prosecutors have petitioned courts to dispossess 
dozens of former officials, including ex-Presidents Serzh Sarkisian and Robert 
Kocharian, and their relatives. So far there have been no court verdicts in any 
of those cases. Tsarukian is apparently the first person who risks losing his 
assets despite having never held any executive posts in government.

Armenia - A screenshot from an report on expensive property 
acquisitions by current Armenian officials, March 15, 2023.

Pashinian has repeatedly portrayed the law in question as a major 
anti-corruption measure that will help his administration recover “wealth stolen 
from the people.” Opposition figures counter, however, that Pashinian is simply 
keen to suppress dissent and cement his hold on power.

In November 2021, opposition lawmakers appealed to the Constitutional Court to 
declare the law unconstitutional. They said that it contradicts articles of the 
Armenian constitution guaranteeing the presumption of innocence and property 
rights. The court, dominated by judges installed by the current government, has 
still not ruled on the appeal.

Also, Pashinian is facing growing media allegations that members of his 
entourage themselves are enriching themselves or their cronies. In February this 
year, the prime minister publicly urged senior officials to sue publications 
“falsely” accusing them of illicit enrichment. In March, hackers hijacked the 
YouTube channel of an Armenian newspaper just as it was about to publish a video 
report detailing expensive property acquisitions by several senior government 
officials and pro-government lawmakers.

Reposted on ANN/Armenian News with permission from RFE/RL
Copyright (c) 2023 Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty, Inc.
1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.


Sports: IBA World Junior Championships. Armenia dominates in men’s, India in women’s semifinals

Inside The Games
Dec 1 2023



  •  Friday, 1 December 2023

The eighth day of the 2023 IBA World Junior Championships in Yerevan brought many emotions to the participants, as some of them secured their places in the finals, and the others will go home with bronze medals. The semifinal fights were full of exciting moments, great punches and mixed emotions.

India continues his brilliant performance so far in this competition. Their boxers were absolutely dominant in women’s competition, but the men’s team also produced some decent results. 17 boxers from India stepped to the ring in the semifinals, and 13 of them defeated their opponents. They will have 9 representatives in the women’s finals, and 4 representatives in the men's competition. Russia also had 17 participants in the semifinals, but eight of them will go home with bronze medals. The Russian women’s team also were great today, as six of them managed to reach the finals.

Armenia will have only one representative in the women’s finals, but their men’s team was spectacular on day 8, as eight of their nine representatives claimed a victory and walked to the finals. Only Tigran Khachatryan (+80 kg) lost his fight to Indian Hemant Sangwan. 

One of the most spectacular boxers of the tournament John Maher (63 kg) from the Republic of Ireland faced some difficulties in the semifinals against the Greeck Emmanouil Fotiadis, but eventually 3 judges from 5 gave the victory to the Irish boxer. One of the biggest surprises of the tournament Afghan boxer Amanollah Sahak ended his journey by losing to Adam Maca. The Albanian boxer was so dominant in all three rounds, that one of the judges gave him the victory in  each round 10-8. Maca’s opponent in the final fight will be Platon Kozlov from Russia, who like Maca, didn’t give a chance to his rival.

Tomorrow the boxers will take a small break. In the morning the weigh-in of the finals will take place. The women’s competition finals will be held on December 3, the men’s finals on December 4

All the results of the semifinal fights

Women’s competition

46 kg
Maftuna Musurmonova (Uzbekistan) df Claudia Alcaniz (Spain) 5-0
Anastasia Tiunina (Russia) df Neha Lunthi (India) 4-1

48 kg
Payal Payal (India) df Sila Bibolsynkyzy (Kazakhstan) 5-0
Heghine Petrosyan (Armenia) df Sin-Ai Shen (Taipei) by knockout in the first round

50 kg
Snezhana Kuznetsova (Russia) df Gaukhar Zarden (Kazakhstan) 5-0
Maria Georgopoulou (Greece) df Paro Pari (India) 4-1

52 kg
Farinoz Abdulloeva (Tajikistan) df Aisha Sariyeva (Kazakhstan) 4-1
Nisha Nisha (India) df Diana Sikstus (Russia) 4-1

54 kg
Amisha Kerketta (India) df Rocio Trigos (Romania) 5-0
Sydyk Ayazhan (Kazakhstan) df Zuzanna Golebiewska (Poland) 5-0

57 kg
Vini Vini (India) df Ouriana Kantzari (Greece) 5-0
Sevara Mamatova (Uzbekistan) df Anastasia Taratynova (Russia) by knockout in the first round

60 kg
Tolganay Kassymkhan (Kazakhstan) df Nana Pipia (Georgia) 4-1
Kira Leonova (Russia) df Milka Khalifi (Tunisia) 5-0

63 kg
Sachin Sathe (India) df Alina Kudaigenova (Kazakhstan) 5-0
Siofra Lawless (Republic of Ireland) df Ana Khvedelidze (Georgia) by knockout in the second round

66 kg
Aisulu Mukhit (Kazakhstan) df Anastasia Gribanova (Russia) 5-0
Amalia Tugui (Romania) df Nidhi Dhull (India) 5-0

75 kg
Maftuna Yangieva (Uzbekistan) df Kritika Wasan (India) by knockout in the third round
Ekaterina Frolova (Russia) df Flora Budai (Hungary) 5-0

70 kg
Elizaveta Taimazova (Russia) df Eliza Sopterean (Romania) 5-0
Akansha Phalaswal (India) df Mary Mcdonagh (Republic of Ireland) 5-0

80 kg
Anna Buzuleva (Russia) df Kuralay Yeginbaikyzy (Kazakhstan) 5-0
Megha Sheokand (India) df An-Chi Tseng (Taipei) by knockout in the third round

+80 kg
Prachi Tokas (India) df Maria Osipova (Russia) by knockout in the first round
Sobirakhon Shakhobiddinova (Uzbekistan) df Zaineb Sammar (Belgium) by knockout in the first round

Men’s competition

46 kg
Islam Magomedov (Russia) df Hyeonmin Lee (Korea) 5-0
Arno Darchinyan (Armenia) df Adburakhmon Makhmudjonov (Uzbekistan) 4-1

48 kg
Vagharshak Keyan (Armenia) df Nygman Nygmet (Kazakhstan) by knockout in the second round
Emal Hamdam (Germany) df Sikander Sikander (India) 5-0

50 kg
Tigran Ovsepian (Armenia) df Dominik Gombai (Hungary) by knockout in the second round
Angel Dimitrov (Bulgaria) df Khusan Kokhkhorov (Uzbekistan) 3-2

52 kg
Aren Kharatyan (Armenia) df Yanko Iliev (Bulgaria) 5-0
Amantur Dzhumaev (Kyrgyzstan) df Oscar Grodzicki (Poland) 5-0 

54 kg
Jatin JAtin (India) df Pavel Kondrashov (Russia) 4-1
Nurassyl Tulebek (Kazakhstan) df Przemyslaw Soczowka (Poland) 4-1

57 kg
Platon Kozlov (Russia) df Dilerbek Sadirov (Kyrgyzia) 5-0
Adam Maca (Albania) df Amanollah Sahak (Afghanistan) 5-0

60 kg
Firozjon Sadullaev (Uzbekistan) df Akaki Basaria (Georgia) 5-0
Andranik Martirosyan (Armenia) df Mohamed Zeadeh (Jordan) by knockout in the second round

63 kg
Khikmatillo Ulmasov (Uzbekistan) df Derlys Martinez (Ecuador) 5-0
John Maher (Republic of Ireland) df Emmanouil Fotiadis (Greece) 3-0 

66 kg
Argishti Hakobyan (Armenia) df Akbar Ahmadov (Uzbekistan) 4-1
Ivan Siniak (Belarus) df David Torres (Mexico) 5-0 

70 kg
Samvel Siramargyan (Armenia) df Norbek Abdullaev (Uzbekistan) 5-0
Fabian Urbanski (Poland) df Festim Nimani (Germany) 3-2

75 kg
Albert Harutyunyan (Armenia) df Yolber Bandomo (Spain) 4-1
Sahil Sahil (India) df Vladimir Dranko (Russia) 3-2

80 kg
Bairamkhan Ashurov (Russia) df Guan-Hao Pan (Taipei) by knockout in the first round
Hardik Panwar (India) df Andrei Rumiantsau (Belarus) 5-0

+80 kg
Hemant Sangwan (India) df Tigran Khachatryan (Armenia) 5-0
Islam Salikhov (Uzbekistan) df Ian Bogdanov (Russia) 3-2

European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs calls for sanctions against Azerbaijan


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 29, ARMENPRESS.  European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs  has adopted the annual reports on the implementation of the common security and defense policy and the implementation of the common foreign and security policy.

Armenpress Brussels correspondent informs the reports condemn Azerbaijan’s aggressive policy, pre-planned military attack against Nagorno-Karabakh.

The annual report on the implementation of the common security and defense policy asserts that the attack carried out by Azerbaijan cannot remain without consequences and calls on the EU to impose sanctions against the Azerbaijani authorities, which are responsible for numerous violations of the ceasefire. It is also called to suspend the memorandum of understanding on energy and, taking into account the recent events and the dramatic situation of human rights in Azerbaijan, to stop the negotiations on a new partnership agreement with Azerbaijan.

Given the recent events and the concerning human rights situation in Azerbaijan, the report recommends halting negotiations on a new partnership agreement with the country.

Any deepening of EU relations with Azerbaijan must be conditioned on the country making substantial progress in safeguarding human rights, upholding the rule of law, promoting democracy, and protecting fundamental freedoms, including the rights of ethnic minorities.

The report applauds the establishment of the European Union civilian mission in Armenia, which aims to contribute to the enhancement of security in the region. It calls on the European Council to increase the number of experts included in the mission, to increase the mission's capabilities and geographical scope. The report recommends extending the deployment period for an additional five years.

The report calls on Azerbaijan to allow the deployment of the same mission on its territory and in Nagorno-Karabakh. It also highlights the EU's support for the defense of Armenia's security, independence, and sovereignty. The report calls for promoting more comprehensive and expanded defense cooperation between the parties.

The European Council is urged to be prepared to implement targeted and individual sanctions against those responsible for aggression but not be limited to the political and military circle of President Aliyev, and to stop importing oil and gas from Azerbaijan in the event of any military aggression by Azerbaijan against the territorial integrity of Armenia.

The annual report on the implementation of the common foreign and security policy condemns Azerbaijan's pre-planned and unjustified attack against the Nagorno-Karabakh Armenians and demands the protection of the Armenian cultural, historical and religious heritage in Nagorno-Karabakh in accordance with UNESCO standards and Azerbaijan's international obligations. The report supports ongoing peace talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan, which have been seriously hampered by the recent military operation against Nagorno-Karabakh and de facto ethnic cleansing.

The report reaffirms its support for the democratically elected government of Armenia and expresses full respect for the country's sovereignty, democracy, and territorial integrity. It commends Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan for his announcement that Armenia will not be drawn into a new war with Azerbaijan and appreciates his recent calls to resume peace talks with Azerbaijan at the highest level.  Furthermore, the report welcomes Armenia's decision to ratify the Rome Statute.

Lilit Gasparyan

Church leaders fear land deal may uproot Armenian presence in Jerusalem’s Old City

The Christian Post
Nov 21 2023

Christian leaders in Jerusalem have protested a land deal that they believe has the potential to uproot the Armenian community's historical presence in the Old City.

The contested deal involves leasing about a quarter of the Armenian district of Jerusalem to developers looking to build a luxury hotel development, according to Reuters.

In a joint statement, the Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches in Jerusalem, including local Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholic heads, expressed concern these developments could weaken the Christian presence in the Holy Land.

"The provocations that are being used by the alleged developers to deploy incendiary tactics threaten to erase the Armenian presence in the area, weakening and endangering the Christian presence in the Holy Land," the statement reads.

"As the Heads of Churches, we express our solidarity with the Armenian Patriarchate and community in their decision to take the proper legal procedures in their cancellation of this transaction and urgently appeal to the relevant governmental and non-governmental bodies able to assist in the matter to help restore the former peace and harmony enjoyed by all those who have used this land in the Armenian Quarter."

Demolition for the project started last week at a carpark, which sparked a protest that included confrontations between demonstrators and armed Israeli Jewish settlers. 

The head of the Armenian Church in Jerusalem signed the deal in July 2021, but the community learned of it only when surveyors appeared earlier this year. The church leader claims he was misled and is pursuing legal measures to annul the contract. A priest involved was defrocked in May. 

The real estate contract involves leasing the land for 99 years, according to a June report from the Associated Press. Locals say the development deal impacts not just the carpark but also a community hall, the patriarch's garden, a seminary and five residential homes, according to Reuters. 

The Armenian community says Australian-Israeli businessman Danny Rubinstein and his Xana Capital Group, registered in the United Arab Emirates, are the investors behind the real estate deal. 

As Armenia is believed to be the first nation to adopt Christianity in 301, Armenians hold equal rights in Jerusalem's Holy Christian sites. The Armenian Quarter, dating back to the fourth century, is home to St. James' Cathedral and about 1,000 residents.

"We are having to fight for our existence," Hagop Djernazian, a local student, told Reuters as the community guarded the carpark with barbed wire.

Last week, The Armenian Weekly reported that Armenians held a nonviolent demonstration against construction in their area. The arrival of armed settlers led to police stepping in. 

The following day, according to The Weekly, representatives from Xana Gardens arrived with Rubenstein and insisted on the removal of the Armenian residents.

GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] Secretary General reviews relations between GCC and Armenia

Nov 20 2023

Throughout the meeting, they delved into several shared concerns, exploring economic and investment prospects between the GCC and Armenia, seeking ways to fortify their relationship

Manama: Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Mohamed Albudaiwi has engaged in discussions with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia, Ararat Mirzoyan, focusing on various collaborative fields between the GCC and Armenia. The aim was to bolster and elevate relations in a manner that advances the interests of both parties and fosters increased stability and prosperity.

This meeting took place in Manama, Bahrain's capital, today, on the sidelines of the nineteenth edition of the Manama Dialogue Conference, where the Armenian Foreign Minister was in attendance.

Throughout the meeting, they delved into several shared concerns, exploring economic and investment prospects between the GCC and Armenia, seeking ways to fortify their relationship. Additionally, they exchanged perspectives on recent developments in both regional and international arenas, while also addressing matters of mutual interest.

Asbarez Mourns Longtime Contributor Noubar Demirdjian

Noubar Demirdjian

Asbarez is saddened to report the passing of long-time contributor and reporter Noubar Demirdjian, who died on November 15 in San Francisco.

For decades, Demirdjian’s writings shined a light on many crucial issues, especially with a focus on unique Armenian Genocide survival stories. He also reported on community events that became the conduit for the growth and advanced of the Armenian-American community in the San Francisco-Bay area.

A staunch member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, Demridjian played a crucial role in development of the Armenian community in the Western United States and specifically the Bay Area.

Asbarez will have more about the storied life and contribution of Noubar Demirdjian.

The Asbarez editorial department, management and staff offer their heartfelt condolences to the Demirdjian family and the greater Western U.S. and San Francisco Bay communities.