YEREVAN—California state and local officials’ delegation, headed by State Assembly Speaker John Perez, on Thursday met with Nagorno-Karabakh Republic President Bako Sahakian and visited the Holy See of Etchmiadzin where a meeting was held with His Holiness Karekin II, the Catholicos of All Armenians.
The meeting with President Sahakian took place at the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic’s permanent representation in Yerevan and focused on issues related to expanding and strengthening relations between the Artsakh and the State of California.
The sides noted the obvious positive dynamics of the Artsakh-California relations, adding that it creates a reliable basis to bring bilateral cooperation to a qualitatively new level in the future.
Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Foreign Minister Karen Mirzoyan, Armenia’s newly-appointed Consul General to Los Angeles Sergey Sarkisov, Karabakh’s permanent representative to the US, Robert Avetisyan, Los Angeles County field deputy sheriff Tevan Arustamyan, the outgoing Consul General to Los Angeles Grigor Hovhannisyan and other officials took part in the meeting.
The Perez-led delegation also includes Assemblymembers Katcho Achajian, Cheryl R. Brown, Adrin Nazarian and Scott Wilk. A Los Angeles City Council delegation also visiting Armenia includes Bob Blumenfield and Paul Krekorian and staff.
The Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region played a key role in organizing the delegation visit to Armenia and was represented by its board chairwoman Nora Hovsepian and Executive Director Elen Asatryan.
The delegation was also hosted by Catholicos Karekin II, who praised the cooperation established between the Armenia’s National Assembly and the California State Assembly and expressed gratitude to the members of the delegationr for the recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide of 1915.
During the meeting reference was made to the Armenian community of California and its important contribution to the development of the State.
Speaker John Perez, in turn, thanked the pontiff for the warm welcome at the religious center of all Armenians. He spoke about the aims of the visit and referred to the role of the Armenian Church in the life of all Armenians.
National Assembly Speaker Hovik Abrahamyan attended the meeting in Etchmiadzin.
On Wednesday, the delegation visited the Dzidzernagapert Memorial Complex and Museum, where they paid respect to the victims of the Armenian Genocide. The delegation was also hosted by the Armenian National Assmebly at Parliament.