Khachatrian Discusses Genocide with British Officials

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–An Armenian parliamentary delegation headed by parliament speaker Armen Khachatrian continued its visit to Great Britain by meeting with members of the House of Commons and leaders of the British foreign affairs ministry Thursday.

The Armenian delegation was welcomed by the chairman of the Eastern Department of the foreign affairs ministry of Great Britain on Wednesday. At the beginning of the meeting Armen Khachatrian said that the visit is intended to accomplish not only parliamentary cooperation between the two countries but also at deepening political relations between them.

The foreign affairs minister spoke about some problems–which are to be solved for the development of British-Armenian relations. He said that relations with Turkey as well as with the Russian Federation should be clarified. He thinks that the resolution of Nagorno Karabakh conflict is also necessary–since no development is possible in the region–unless this issue is solved.

Khachatrian in his turn said that the only thing Armenia’s demand is the recognition of the Armenian Genocide of 1915–which is of great moral significance. Turkey should recognize the genocide of Armenia’s–as Germany recognized that of the Jews. Armenia agrees to establish diplomatic relations with Turkey–while Turkey continuously brushes Armenia aside. Armenia is ready to cooperate with Turkey–only if Turkey recognizes the Genocide and does not interfere in the Karabakh issue. Armenia wants a peaceful resolution of the Karabakh conflict and admits the necessity for mutual concessions.

Issues–concerning the relationship between Armenia and Great Britain–Armenia and other countries of the region–the cooperation in the Council of Europe and the Nagorno Karabakh conflict–were discussed at the meeting as well.

According to the parliament’s public relations department–the activities of the House of Commons were presented to the delegation–after which they had the opportunity to take part in a number of committee meetings.

The same day the delegation met with the speaker of the House of Commons Michael Martin–who said that their visit to Westminster Palace was fantastic–taking into account the fact that 11 years ago–Armenia was part of the great empire.

Martin underlined the importance of studying the British experience and using it–adding that the Armenian parliament’s experience will also be interesting.

Armen Khachatrian expressed his gratitude for the invitation and warm reception and presented the activities of the Armenian parliament. He invited Martin to Armenia–adding that mutual visits are important for the interstate relations between the two countries.

The Armenian delegation left for the capital city of Wales Cardiff on Wednesday. Meetings with the Wales parliament chairman Lord David Alice Thomas and the head of the Wales Development Agency Paul Williams were held on Thursday.

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