Armenian people grateful to Pope Francis for principled, unambiguous statement on recognition of Genocide, FM says
YEREVAN, OCTOBER 27, ARMENPRESS. With the opening of the Vatican’s Apostolic Nunciature in Armenia, a new page will begin in the history of the diplomatic relations between Armenia and the Holy See, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ararat Mirzoyan said during the joint press conference with Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State at the Holy See Archbishop Edgar Peña Parra in Yerevan.
In his remarks the FM said he is happy to welcome Edgar Peña Parra in Armenia, the first country that adopted Christianity as a state religion.
“An event with a great Armenian-Vatican meaning will take place soon, the Apostolic Nunciature of the Holy See is going to open in Armenia. I want to praise this as a new page is opening in the history of the diplomatic relations between Armenia and the Holy See”, the minister said.
During their private meeting today the Armenian FM and the Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State exchanged ideas about the bilateral relations and expressed readiness to deepen the ties between the two countries based on Christian values, historical and cultural ties, as well as on coinciding approaches over the international relations.
“We discussed the recent visit of the Armenian President to the Holy See, highlighted the fact that February 27 is celebrated in the Roman calendar as the day of remembrance of St. Gregory of Narek, which once again shows the spiritual connection between Armenia and the Holy See”, the Armenian FM said.
Ararat Mirzoyan said that the Holy See has always stood by Armenia at difficult moments, and last year was not an exception as well.
The FM said that the Vatican’s consistent position over the peaceful settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict and the preservation of lasting peace and stability in the region is highly important. He, in particular, highlighted the messages addressed by Pope Francis during last year’s aggression unleashed by Azerbaijan against Artsakh and the subsequent period, as well as his calls for releasing the prisoners of war.
“As you know, now as well Azerbaijan, in violation of the international humanitarian law and its commitments assumed by the November 9 statement, continues holding the Armenian prisoners of war and civilians in captivity, and we ask the Pope to always remember in his prayers and public addresses the Armenian POWs and emphasize the necessity of their immediate release”, the Armenian FM said, reminding that after the 2020 War, the Armenian historical-cultural and religious heritage of Artsakh, which have come under the Azerbaijani control, are currently under danger.
In this respect the sides highlighted the interest of both UNESCO and the Holy See over the matter.
FM Mirzoyan said that the Armenian people are grateful to Pope Francis for the principled and unequivocal statement on the recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
“The condemnation of that crime against humanity is very important in terms of preventing the repetition of such crimes in other parts of the world”, the Armenian FM said.
Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State at the Holy See Archbishop Edgar Peña Parra arrived in Armenia on a two-day official visit.
Editing and Translating by Aneta Harutyunyan