STEPANAKERT (Noyan Tapan)–The opening of the Goris-Stepanakert Highway became a turning point in efforts to link Karabakh and Armenia. On that occesion presidents of both countries stressed the importance of the road to the future of the Armenian nation.
"The whole point of the ten-year history of the Karbakh struggle is in the inexhaustible belief of the people–in their strength–unity around the national idea–will and resolution to achieve the goal," Karabakh President Arkady Ghoukassian said Wednesday–in his address in connection with the seventh anniversary of the declaration of Karabakh’s state independence.
The leader of Nagorno-Karabakh stressed that authorities–relying on the confidence of their people–are deepening and developing the Artsakh-Armenia-Diaspora cooperation–taking measures to strengthen statehood–develop military construction–restore the destroyed localities–form and develop market relations and establish democratic principles.
The same day Armenian President Robert Kocharian arrived in Karabakh and attended the opening ceremony for three sections of the Goris-Stepanakert road. Talking to journalists–he said that each visit to Karabakh is an important event for him. Armenia’s president told the Karabakh people to be strong.
Kocharian said that there are large-scale programs and perspective tasks–and the chief purpose for the sake of which this struggle began should outweigh all insignificant aspirations and problems. He expressed confidence that it will be so. "Our people have a brilliant future," Kocharian said.
In turn–Ghoukassian–who was elected president of Karabakh a year ago–admitted that by force of serious objective and subjective reasons it was impossible to realize all the projected tasks. At the same time he voiced confidence that the Karabakh authorities are on the right track and the results of the work can be discussed a little later.
Ghoukassian pointed out that the people which won the war and built up an independent state have the right to hope for the better. According to him–a new–economic war began–and the Karabakh authorities should create possibilities to raise the standard of living and solve social and economic problems.