Pashinyan discusses Armenia-EU agenda and regional issues with EU Foreign Ministers

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YEREVAN, JUNE 25, ARMENPRESS. Caretaker Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan received on June 25 Austrian Federal Minister for European and International Affairs Alexander Schallenberg, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis, Romanian Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu, as well as EEAS Managing Director for Russia, Eastern partnership, Central Asia, Regional cooperation and OSCE Michael Siebert, EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the Crisis in Georgia Toivo Klaar.

As ARMENPRESS was informed from the Office of the Prime Minister, Nikol Pashinyan saluted such a representational visit to Armenia, reminding that the visit had been planed still when there were more crisis situations in Armenia than solutions to them. ”I am glad that the visit took place when parliamentary elections have already taken place in Armenia, which reaffirmed the devotion of our people to democratic values. The quality of the elections were highly assessed also by international organizations’’, Pashinyan said, adding that by that the political crisis in Armenia remains in the past and the Government can fully return to the implementation of its important agenda, including the effective implementation of the provisions of the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with the EU.

Romanian Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu noted that a regional visit with such a delegation takes place for the first time, one of the key goals of which is fostering the Armenia-EU relations. The Foreign Minister of Romania congratulated Nikol Pashinyan on organizing the elections at a high level, the victory of ”Civil Contract” Party and the entry into force of the CEPA from March 1. He stressed that Armenia should be able to derive maximal benefit from the agreement, emphasizing the EU’s readiness to assist the Armenian government in pushing for institutional reforms.

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis noted the importance of strengthening security and stability in the South Caucasus, adding that it is also crucial for them in the context of ensuring their own security.

The Lithuanian Foreign Minister noted the need to strengthen the atmosphere of trust between the parties to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, adding that the EU is ready to assist in this matter as well. Gabrielius Landsbergis highlighted the solution of humanitarian issues, including the return of war prisoners kept in Azerbaijan.

Austrian Federal Minister for European and International Affairs Alexander Schallenberg also referred to the elections held in Armenia, noting that it was not only the victory of ‘’Civil Contract’’ Party, but also victory of democracy. According to him, to the happiness of the Armenian people, those who predicted problems during elections in Armenia were mistaken, which also shows Armenia’s commitment to democratic values.

Thanking for the opinions, Nikol Pashinyan emphasized that the crisis situation created after the war, as well as the elections recorded the viability of democracy in Armenia, therefore, democracy in Armenia is irreversible.

During the meeting the interlocutors discussed the agenda of relations between Armenia and the EU, as well as the regional situation and issues related to its solution.

Nikol Pashinyan highly appreciated the role of the EU, particularly the President of the European Council Charles Michel for the return of the 15 Armenian POWs. The caretaker Prime Minister of Armenia emphasized the necessity of the full implementation of the November 9, 2020 trilateral declaration, the return of all the POWs, as well as the peaceful solution of the situation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border. Nikol Pashinyan emphasized that this issue must be solved exclusively by the withdrawal of the Azerbaijani forces from the sovereign territory of Armenia and reminded that earlier he had made a relevant agreement over the issue. Referring to Nagorno Karabakh issue, Nikol Pashinyan noted that the comprehensive settlement of the conflict should take place in the sidelines of the OSCE Minsk Group.

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