Nalbandian Further Alienates

Armenia’s Foreign Minister, Eduard Nalabandian, chose a joint press briefing with his Swedish counterpart Carl Bildt to fire back at calls for his resignation.

Last week the Armenian Revolutionary Federation called for Nalbandian to step down, saying “Armenia’s foreign policy has deviated from the main provisions of the national security strategy.”

“On the one hand, they can perhaps be explained by some naivety, to put it very mildly. On the other hand, perhaps by attempts to fish for something in troubled waters,” said Nalbandian. “I don’t think that speculation around the Karabakh problem, which is a matter of national importance, gives credit to anyone.”

The undiplomatic manner in which Nalbandian addressed this matter, demonstrated further that a change was needed.

The individual charged with shaping Armenia’s foreign policy cannot diminish national discourse on a matter as urgent and important as the fate of Karabakh by describing the sincere concerns, not just from the ARF, but also from political players in Karabakh as “speculation.”

Calls for Nalbandian’s resignation and criticism of Armenia’s foreign policy stems from the lack of transparency on part of the foreign ministry during the course of Nalbandian’s tenure. When both Azeri and Turkish officials—perhaps in tandem—are making statements on a daily basis and revealing details of discussions and agreements, the general silence by the foreign ministry prompts discussion. It is this very strategy that has muddied the waters, in which Nalbandian claims his detractors are fishing.

Clearly, the calls for his resignation prompted him to clarify a series of issues, including refuting claims by his Azeri counterpart that a timetable has been developed for withdrawal from the liberated territories surrounding the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. “I can tell you that this issue has not been discussed at the Moscow meeting,” stressed Nalbandian.

He went on to say that while the Madrid principles serve as a basis for negotiations, Armenia has not given its official approval to them.

Nalbandian also broached the thorny issue of Turkey-Armenia relations, saying that no new agreement has been signed following the April 22 announcement of the infamous “roadmap,” and rejected claims that Armenia has approved the establishment of commission of historians to probe the Genocide. He did say, however, that once a final agreement is reached and corresponding agreements are signed, an intergovernmental committee that will include various sub-committees “that will deal with various issues, including the issue of the restoration of mutual trust between the two peoples.”

If the foreign ministry elevates the transparency and provides information on a timely manner, then the nation can have a more substantive dialogue and discussion about matters of great importance to Armenia, as it should given the ramifications of these critical challenges confronting us.

By brushing aside the criticism and resorting to petty name calling, Nalbandian showed his and the administration’s unwillingness to trust its own people, further alienating the political forces at a time when national unity is of paramount importance.

Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.


  1. Papken Haertunian said:

    Not rejecting affirmatively the so called “Madrid Principles” is tantamount to accepting them by any leader in charge. Mr. Nalbandian should explain to all armenians that how security of Armenia and Artsakh will not be in danger once Armenian forces pulled out of our liberated territories? Mr. Nalbandyan must refer to our liberated territories as such. Mr. Nalbandyan cannot have both ways. On one hand, he has no objection to these principles. On the other hand, he claims that no agreement will be signed without Authorization of leadership of Artsakh and its people. Well, both president of Artsakh and the people of Artsakh reject these principles. Mr. Nalbandyan’s silence on this issue means he is not with us. If he is not with us, then he must step down.

  2. Samvel Jeshmaridian said:

    Either Mr. Nalbandyan knows everything (including the things of 10/27) that we do not know or he knows nothing (but pretends he knows something).

  3. Garo Avedis said:

    this is total disgrace,some one who denies the historical fact of the Armenian genocide sitting next to Nalbandian talking about the fate of our brothers in Karabakh?

  4. Angela Achikgiozian said:

    While the leaders of both Turkey and Azerbaijan show all the signs and symptoms of nationalistic approach in their behaviour, their Armenian counterpart’s behaviour is at least strange and very dangerous one since it “keeps secrets” from its own people. If I was too naive, I would tend to think that there is something incredibly important in doing it, so the enemy won’t find out the real decisions made behind the curtains. But I am not naive and do not believe that the Armenian side is so powerful in dpilomacy and is such an importance for the international powers, that can play such a strong hand. Our strongest hand has been the unity that brought us to a victory during the Artsakh liberation war, not the secretive decisions by the leadership. It was the will, power and unanimous actions of ALL ARMENIANS in the whole world that helped to win. I guess it is the time to do it again, unfortunately this time our struggle is becoming against our own leadership who is becoming more and more detached from its people.

  5. Gayane said:


    I definitely agree with what you said. I would say the exact same thing..

    Mr Nalbandyan, Armenians are not for sell.. you can’t play both sides.. you are an Armenian, you have te stand behind your people.. you have to stand behind your country.. If you can’t do that, please step down and allow for the person who can.

    We need the unity and not someone who can be bought…

    Thank you

  6. Darwin Jamgochian said:

    Just who is fishing in muddy waters? Since when is diplomacy governed by cynicism? I see nothing to alter my opinion as to how the Armenian Government is dealing in foreign policy discussions.

  7. ArmenAryatsi said:

    A picture speaks a thousand words. Mr. Nalbandyan sitting with a Swiss politician who denies the Armenian Genocide! Would the Jews allow a Holocaust denier to visit Israel, sit next to their foreign minister and have marry discussions about their foreign affairs!? Not in a thousand years!

    Armenia is a world champion in the game of Chess, but not in diplomacy and politics. We need to plan and execute an aggressive national strategy in all areas of national interest: from the recognition of the Armenian Genocide to long term geopolitical strategic goals. We need to start by ending the talks with turkey immediately, demanding that they recognize the Genocide and lift the blockade. It’s not the other way around! Stop the capitulation!

  8. Krikor Krikorian said:

    Mr. Nalbantyan and the Armenian administration should be guided by the priciple that the feeerdom and independence of any nation is a devine right .
    Kharabagh and its pople should be protected by all means by Armenia.
    The fact the Nalbantyan is seating next to a Genicide denier is a disgrace

  9. Papken Haertunian said:

    Gayane, thank you for reading my comment.
    I do not agree with you in that “We need to start by ending the talks with turkey immediately,..”

    What we should do is to demand our Western Armenia from Turkey in order to fullfill our self-determination process as a viable and stable and peace loving nation. No one should expect peace or secureity from the region as long as Armenia and Artsakh have not gotton their rights to enjoy their homelands.

    Azerbaijan and Turkey must be smart to come in terms with Armenians, if they want to continue to receive their petrodollars.

  10. ArmenAryatsi said:

    Dear Papken,

    It is extremely dangerous and not logical to have a dialogue with any nation that denies the Armenian Genocide and carries out a policy of denial and anti-Armenian hate campaign not only at home, but around the world. It’s like the allied nations trying to appease Hitler during WWII which backfired. Have we forgotten that it was just a few months ago that the turkish government widely distributed a movie called “sary gelin” to turkish schools which supposedly shows how turks were massacred by the Armenians in early 1900s? This movie was shown to over 60 million pre-school children! Don’t you think these kids will remember this movie when they are old? Not only are they claiming that the Genocide didn’t happen, but it was the Armenians who committed genocide against the turks!