Karabakh Diplomat Discusses Peace Process in London

LONDON–For the first time the London Armenian Community welcomed Robert Avetisyan, a young diplomat from Karabakh, at Navasartian Centre in Ealing on May 6. He was specially invited for a lecture dealing with the ethnography of Karabakh from ancient settlemen’s to modern times and discussing the way forward for peace and prosperity of the young Republic. The lecture was delivered in English, in a hall packed with large number of community members, university students and local dignitaries, which included a representative from the Armenian Embassy and an honourable member of the British Parliament Stephan Pound, Member of Parliament for Ealing North. The meeting was chaired by Sevan Artin of Armenian National Committee UK. After his enlightening lecture, the speaker was met with a barrage of questions from an enthusiastic audience-eager to know and learn more about Karabakh. During his weeklong visit to London, Avetisyan took the opportunity to pay a courtesy visit to a long to friend of Karabakh and Armenia Baroness Cox at the House of Lords of the British Parliament. He also met Stephan Pound MP at the House of Commons. The Ealing Member of Parliament expressed interest in Karabakh issues and indicated his willingness to maintaining contact with Karabakh Republic where Avetisyan holds the position of First Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Avetisyan was also invited to meet the Ambassador of the Republic of Armenia, Dr. Vahe Gabrielyan. In between visiting many interesting tourist sights of our great city, London, Avetisyan also had a number of social visits which included a visit to Homenetmen Armenian Scouting Association of London, where he met the scouts leaders and addressed the young scouts with a few encouraging words; expressing his appreciation and admiration of their scouting activities and their importance for the community here and the homeland. Avetisyan conducted an open round table with a selection of the Armenian youth of the UK. The round table was a chance for the youth to ask whatever questions they had left and to raise any issues related to Karabakh that they felt were important. Before his departure from London Avetisyan was interviewed by the BBC World Service about the Karabakh situation, the interview was broadcast to the countries of the Caucasus and Central Asia. He was also invited for a meeting with Directors of Conciliation Resources–Caucasus Program–for exchange of views. CR is an UK-based independent NGO working to prevent conflicts and promote justice. Avetisyans visit to London helped to increase awareness among the British Armenian community about the reality of Karabakh and how to built bridges between the two communities and the British public in general. The above visit was sponsored by Hamazkayin Cultural Society and the events were organised by ANC-UK.


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