FRESNO—Fresno County became the first County in California to officially recognize the independence of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic (Artsakh). On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors passed a resolution sponsored by Supervisor Andreas Borgeas that officially recognizes the Nagorno Karabakh Republic – a region historically and ethnically Armenian situated between Armenia and Azerbaijan – and also calls upon the California Legislature to grant official recognition.
The Permanent Representative of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic in the United States, Robert Avetisyan, commented that “[w]e are grateful for [this] initiative, and hope that the adoption of this Resolution will set a deeper cooperation towards stability, as well as democratic and economic prosperity in our region.” The Consul General of the Republic of Armenia in Los Angeles, Grigor Hovhannisian, commented that “[e]very step toward the recognition of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic is a step toward peace and friendly relations in the South Caucasus. I whole-heartedly welcome recognition efforts by community and elected officials, as a continuation of friendly relations and solidarity between the people of the Republic of Artsakh, the Republic of Armenia and Fresno, California.”
County Supervisor Andreas Borgeas said, “I am thrilled to stand beside our Armenian friends – here, in Armenia and Artsakh – and hope Sacramento will also officially recognize the independence of NKR. While Fresno County is the first County in California to pass such a resolution, my goal is for this initiative to help inspire more recognition efforts throughout the state, country and eventually Washington, D.C.”
“[T]his resolution by the Fresno County Board of Supervisors is timely, appropriate and significant,” commented William Bairamian, Executive Director of the Armenian National Committee – Western Region. State legislatures in Maine, Rhode Island and Massachusetts have already passed similar resolutions.
The Armenian Consul General Grigor Hovhannisian was joined at a press conference with representatives from the Armenian community to recognize the 98th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide as well as to celebrate the importance of recognizing the independence of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic.