President of Poland Arrives in Armenia

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Poland’s President Alexander Kwasniewski arrived in Armenia on a three-day visit on Wednesday. During the joint press conference President Robert Kocharian said that relations with Poland are very important for Armenian foreign policy–taking into consideration Poland’s role in European issues. Kocharian acknowledged Poland’s success in their realization economic reforms–their implementation of European standards–and their membership into European Union.

Kocharian also said that during the negotiations with Alexander Kwasniewski–prerequisites for bilateral cooperation were strengthened. According to him–both presidents consider the level of economic ties unsatisfactory and the Polish businessmen who escorted the President Kwasniewski received a warm welcome by Kocharian. Kocharian expressed hope that the establishment of ties with Armenian businessmen will support the development of economic cooperation between Armenia and Poland.

The presidents also discussed the issues on international terrorism and the situation in the world after September 11. Kocharian welcomed dialogue between the countries to cooperate in the struggle against terrorism–and also expressed hope that this dialogue will support the elimination of the remaining "cold war." He informed his Polish counterpart about the developmen’s of Karabakh’s conflict settlement. Kocharian stressed that both of the sides of the conflict are resolute in searching for constructive ways to settle the conflict.

The president of Poland said his visit was another step toward active political dialogue between the two countries. Referring to the economic relations–he reiterated the words of the Polish Minister of Economy and said–"The level of economic relations between our countries is so low that the only thing we can do is to go ahead." According to Kwasniewski–the group of Polish businessmen–who arrived in Armenia–includes not only the representatives of industry but also representatives of bank system and company of foreign loans’ insurance. Their visit was a good opportunity to discuss what direction the development of economic relations between the two countries will take.

The Polish president welcomed Kocharian’s efforts to the establish stability in the region and stressed that Poland is interested in the peaceful settlement of Karabakh conflict. He also said that his country will continue to provide political support to Armenia in the steps it take to resolve the Karabakh conflict.

The two presidents also signed a joint declaration on Wednesday during their first meeting. The two presidents–expanded on the Declaration on Cooperation and Friendly Relations between the two countries signed in Warsaw on July 14–1999–emphasizing cooperation between the two countries within the framework of world and regional organizations and programs. The sides declared that they will continue their dialogue around political and economic problems and problems of security–continue making steps towards developing and improving economic relations–and will cooperate to successfully realize the EU-sponsored INOGATE project.

On Wednesday evening–President Robert Kocharian and his wife Bella Kocharian will host a dinner in honor of Polish President Alexander Kvasnevsky and his wife.

On Thursday–the two presidents will attend the opening ceremony of the Armenian-Polish business-forum.

On the same day–the Polish president will visit the Genocide Memorial. Alexander Kvasnevsky lay wreaths on the memorial in remembrance of the victims and he will plant a tree.

The Polish president will then meet with students and teachers of Yerevan State University.

On the last day of the visit–the delegation will visit the Mother See of Saint Etchmiadzin to meet with the Catholicos of All-Armenia’s Karekin II.

The Polish president will also visit the Sevan residence of the Armenian president and Matenadaran–and he will meet with representatives of the Polish community in Armenia.

The delegation will leave Armenia on Friday.

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