YEREVAN—Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakian received an official delegation from the Australian state of New South Wales.
A wide range of issues related to the development of relations between New South Wales and Artsakh were discussed during the meeting. President Sahakian expressed gratitude to the authorities and people of New South Wales for supporting Artsakh and de-facto recognizing the independence of his country, adding that it was a significant political and moral step on the path to the international recognition of Artsakh and establishment of bilateral relations.
Both sides mentioned the existence of all the necessary conditions for cooperation and resoluteness to work in this direction.
Deputy Speaker of the Artsakh Republic National Assembly Arthur Tovmasyan, Artsakh Republic Permanent Representative in Australia Varouzhan Iskandaryan, Armenian National Committee of Australia representatives, and other officials took part in the meeting.
The seven-member delegation of the Australia’s New South Wales Parliament visited Dzidzernagapert, the Armenian Genocide Memorial in Yerevan. As reported by Armenpress, 15 years after the recognition of the Armenian Genocide, seven parliamentarians of the Upper and Lower Houses of the New South Wales visited Dzidzernagapert to commemorate the innocent victims of the Armenian Genocide. The Australian parliamentarians also visited the Armenian Genocide Museum Institute and made a note in the register of honorary guests.
The visit was initiated by the Armenian National Committee of Australia. “The key aim of the visit is to provide the parliament members, having made quite a considerable contribution to the Armenian issue, with the opportunity to see Armenia, get acquainted with the centuries-old Armenian culture and history and, upon their return, to continue their pro-Armenian activities in Australia”, said the ANC Australia Executive Director Vache Kahramanian to Armenpress.
The delegation of the Australian parliamentarians, who arrived in Armenia on July 12, held high-level meetings with the President of the Republic of Armenia Serzh Sarkisian, the President of the National Assembly Hovik Abrahamyan, the Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan, as well as His Holiness Karekin II, the Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians. Issues related to the further strengthening of Armenian-Australian cooperation were discussed. Earlier, the ANC Australia Executive Director Vache Kahramanian expressed his hope that the meetings will give a new impetus to the Armenian-Australian political, economic, and cultural relations.
In May, 2013, during an interview with the SBS radio station in Australia, the Member of the New South Wales Legislative Council, Rev. Fred Nile touched upon the forthcoming visit to Armenia and stated that he was “very excited and hopes for a warm reception”.
The largest state of Australia – New South Wales – on April 17, 1997, adopted a motion condemning the massacres that took place in the Ottoman Empire, characterizing them as the first Genocide of the 20th century. On May 1 and June 8, 2013, the Parliament adopted motions recognizing the genocides of the Assyrians and Greeks and a motion on the re-establishment of the recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
On October 25th, 2012, the Legislative Council of New South Wales adopted a unanimous motion recognizing the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh and calling on the right to self-determination of its people. This historic motion was the first in Australia and the third internationally.