BELGRADE — On February 26, the President of the Republic of Serbia H.E. Tomislav Nikolić met a delegation led by Kaspar Karampetian, President of the European Armenian Federation for Justice and Democracy (EAFJD), at the Presidential Palace in Belgrade. The delegation comprised of the Prelate of the Armenians of Romania Msgr. Datev Hagopian-Mouradian, the President of the Armenian Community in Serbia Samvel Ayvazyan and Dr. Yiannos Charalampidis – journalist and author of books on Nagorno-Karabakh.
The adviser to the President of Serbia and former Minister of Foreign Affair Ivan Mrkić also participated in the meeting.
During the one-hour meeting, Karampetian expressed his gratitude to President Nikolić for his two visits to Armenia, especially during the commemoration of the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, on behalf of all the members of the Federation.
EAFJD President stressed his satisfaction regarding the improvement of the bilateral relations between the Republics of Serbia and Armenia, during President Nikolić’s term in office. He expressed the willingness of the EAFJD to use its whole potential to help further deepen the relations between the two countries. Karampetian introduced the head of the Armenian Community in Serbia Samvel Ayvazyan to President Nikolić and focused on the Armenian Community in Serbia.
Accepting Karampetians’ request to provide to the Armenian Community of Serbia with land so that it can build a church, school, as well as a meeting hall, President Nikolić instructed his team to examine the possibility to satisfy the needs of the community, to help the latter be better organized, take care of their faith, language and traditions.
On behalf of the His Holiness the Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II, Bishop Datev presented an icon which was sent as a gift to the President of the Republic of Serbia. Bishop Datev, emphasized the excellent relations between the Serbian and Armenian Churches, mentioning that a visit of the Serbian Patriarch to the Holy See of Etchmiadzin is being planned.
President Nikolić expressed his gratitude to the Catholicos of all Armenians for the valuable gift and thanked especially Bishop Datev, for his visit to Belgrade, to personally present to him the icon and its history. The President of Serbia also expressed his satisfaction about this meeting and thanked the Armenian delegation for the visit to Belgrade. He also emphasized that his visits to Armenia aimed at deepening the relations between the two countries. President Nikolić spoke particularly warmly of his participation in the commemoration of the Centenary of the Armenian Genocide, when he personally represented the Republic of Serbia. President Nikolić informed that the relations will be deepened much more in the future and that he is looking forward to welcoming the President of Armenia Serzh Sarkisian to Serbia in 2016.
“Today we had the honor of being received by the President of Serbia H.E. Tomislav Nikolić, with whom we had a very fruitful meeting and discussion. We are certain that the common history and values that we share with the Serbian people and the willingness of both Serbia and Armenia to deepen their cooperation will lead to significant results in the future,” said Karampetian.
“The President was favorable to our request regarding the Armenian community in Serbia, which will play also an important role in strengthening the ties between the two societies. I am confident that in the future we will have the opportunity to discuss other political matters with Serbian officials and reach a common understanding for the benefit of our two peoples,” concluded Karampetian.