YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–President of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic Arkady Ghoukassian was given the title of Academician of Political Science at a ceremony organized by the Armenian Division of the International Academy of Natural and Social Sciences September 20 at the Armenian National Academy of Sciences. Vice-President of the Academy–Japanese Professor Tagasi Goino presented Ghoukassian with an early 19th century etching made in the traditions of the Ukio-E school.
Speaker of the Karabakh Parliament Oleg Yesayan regarded the conferment of the title as "another step made at the highest political level." In his turn–President Ghoukassian regarded the confernment of the title as an appraisal of the achievemen’s of the Karabakh people over the past ten years.
The Karabakh president gave assurances that Karabakh authorities and people will not veer from the chosen path–nor will they go back to the status quo of 1988–as they can not imagine their existence as part of Azerbaijan. The Karabakh president said that the status of an independent state is not an end in itself. The Karabakh people dream of the national re-unification and building up of a single state. "It is only the re-unification with Armenia that can be an alternative to it [Karabakh independence]. And if we have temporarily abandoned this idea–it was only because the world is not ready to accept it. We have chosen the way of independence and will not renounce it," Ghoukassian said. He did not rule out the possibility of establishing horizontal relations with Azerbaijan.