Euronest 4th ordinary session in Yerevan, Armenia

Yerevan, Armenia, 17 March, 2015: Today, the Euronest 4th ordinary session’s official opening was held in the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia, during which the President of the Republic, Serzh Sargsyan, Speaker of the National Assembly Mr. Galust Sahakyan, Vice-President of the European Parliament Mr. Ryszard Czarnecki, Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Mr. Traian Hristea, and Co-Presidents of the Euronest Parliamentary Delegation Mr. Borys Tarasyuk and Mrs. Heidi Hautala, addressed the attendees.

In the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia Members of the European Parliament, National Assembly deputies from Armenia, Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia were present, as well as members of the Civil Society and the international media.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Sargsyan welcomed the attendees and stressed the importance of this session being held in Yerevan, which is a sign of Armenia’s willingness to move forward its relations with the EU, accommodating the policies with those of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). The President also stressed the democratisation and development process of Armenia through the Constitutional reforms to take place.

Vice-President of the European Parliament Mr. Czarnecki opened his remarks in Armenian, supporting the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, in this centennial year. Mr. Czarnecki stressed that the Euronest is an important component of the Eastern Partnership and that it’s a multilateral platform to further the policies and values of the European Union, and expressed his regret that no Azerbaijani delegation is present in Armenia. Mr. Czarnecki also stressed that Euronest ‘must focus on the values and inspirations which unite us, on the inclusive spirit which animates this Assembly, rather than on divisive elements’, a statement which the European Armenian Federation for Justice & Democracy (EAFJD) absolutely shares and supports, and many times has raised this issue in multiple fora in the past.

Mrs. Hautala in her remarks also mentioned the importance of holding this year’s Euronest session in Yerevan, on the centenary of the Armenian Genocide, she also mentioned that Armenia is moving forward in her relations with the European Union, and as a co-chair, regretted that the Azerbaijani delegation has decided not to participate in this session in Yerevan.

After the initial welcoming talks, the delegates left for the family photo. The proceeding are underway in the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia. The Euronest session will be concluded on Wednesday evening.

It shall be noted, that before the commencement of the discussions, one minute of silence was held in memory of late Vahan Hovhannisian, member of the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia (ARF – Dashnaktsutyun faction) first chairman of the Armenian delegation to the Euronest, member of the Bureau of the Euronest.