Chairman of Artsakh Parliament Ashot Ghoulian met Dutch MPs

On 5 March 2019 a delegation from Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) with Chairman of National Assembly of Artsakh Mr Ashot Ghoulian and deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Mrs Armine Aleksanyan, together with FAON chairman Mr Mato Hakhverdian and secretary of the FAON Mrs Inge Drost, participated in a Dutch parliament hearing about Artsakh.

At the parliamentary meeting were present also Mrs Irina Beglaryan, Mr Gegham Stepanyan from Artsakh and Mrs Karine Mkrttsjan as translator.

The hearing took place in a so-called “special procedure” of standing committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives of the Netherlands. It was requested in a letter by the Federation of Armenian Organisations in the Netherlands (FAON) to raise awareness for the situation in the Republic of Artsakh. The meeting was organised and chaired by the Member of Parliament Sadet Karabulut (Socialist Party). Dutch parliamentarians of 5 factions were present, among others Mr Joel Voordewind (Christian Union), who is the vice chairman of standing committee on Foreign Affairs.

After warm welcoming words by Mrs Karabulut, Mr Hakhverdian introduced the guests from Artsakh. He referred to earlier occasions, when the Armenian community in the Netherlands brought the situation in Artsakh to the attention of the Dutch Parliament and government in recent years, with the submission of petitions, letters and a special hearing in 2015 with participation of FAON and a delegation of European Friends of Armenia including Armenian MP Mr Tevan Poghosyan.

In his introduction Mr Ghoulian thanked Mrs Karabulut and her colleagues for their interest for Artsakh and presented the current situation in his country and what has led to it in the last 31 years. The Republic of Artsakh is convinced that the solution of the conflict with Azerbaijan can only be reached in a peaceful way. He also gave a brief account of the democratic development in Artsakh. He mentioned that 6 parliamentary and 5 presidential elections have been organised during past 25 years. He invited the Dutch parliamentarians to visit Artsakh, like their colleagues from other European countries.

After Mr Ghoulian’s introduction the Dutch MPs asked questions about the situation in Artsakh and the possible solution of the conflict. Mr Ghoulian answered all questions and talked about the long going peace process led by the co-chairs of OSCE Minsk Group. He explained the obstacles, which exist on the way for a fair solution of the conflict. He also pointed how the Netherlands with its important political and economical possibilities could effectively support the peace process. He spoke about the difficulties that Artsakh is facing for the solution of the economical problems. According to Mr Ghoulian following the recent contacts of new Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashynian and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliev the situation at the boarder was relatively calm in the last few months.

The meeting took place in a friendly atmosphere.

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