Artsakh Prime Minister Arayik Harutyunyan with ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian and Congressional Armenian Caucus co-chair Representative Frank Pallone
WASHINGTON—Nagorno-Karabakh Republic’s Prime Minister Arayik Harutyunyan joined with members of the Congressional Armenian Caucus, Armenian American community leaders, and the Armenian and Artsakh representations at Capitol Hill celebration of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic’s (Artsakh) 25th anniversary on Tuesday, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.
The event, hosted by the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues, featured opening remarks by ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian, speeches by U.S. legislators – including Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Jackie Speier (D-CA), Caucus Vice-Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Representatives Judy Chu (D-CA), Jim Costa (D-CA) and Brad Sherman (D-CA) – as well as an insightful presentation by Armenia’s Ambassador Grigor Hovhannissian, a compelling analysis by former U.S. Ambassador to Armenia John Evans, and a powerful keynote address by Prime Minister Harutyunyan, which was live-streamed on the ANCA Facebook page.
“It is symbolic for us to organize this event on the occasion of Artsakh’s independence in the United States Congress as both our nations and states share the same values,” said Prime Minister Harutyunyan, who went on to outline key factors of Artsakh’s economic and democratic progress over the past quarter century. He commended the leadership of House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA), Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY) and senior member Brad Sherman (D-CA) for their efforts to support the cease-fire and implement investigative mechanisms. The Prime Minister thanked legislators for appropriating aid for Nagorno Karabakh, underscoring the life-saving nature of The Halo Trust’s ongoing demining efforts and the importance of allocating assistance for the expansion of the Lady Cox Rehabilitation Center in Artsakh’s capital, Stepanakert. The full text of his translated remarks is provided below.
The Podesta Group, a paid foreign agent of the Azerbaijani government of Ilham Aliyev, circulated letters condemning the event to Congressional offices, and a small group of protesters gathered outside the Capitol Hill offices to register their opposition to this annual American commemoration of Artsakh’s independence.