Armenian Church States “Peace Can Not be at the Expense of National Dignity”

Armenian Church States “Peace Can Not be at the Expense of National Dignity”

ETCHMIADZIN, ARMENIA – The Supreme Spiritual Council, chaired by the His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, responding to the external and internal challenges, geopolitical and regional developments facing Armenia and Artsakh after the catastrophic 44-day war, states:

– The Azerbaijani authorities continue their condemnable and hostile attitudes towards Armenia, Artsakh and the Armenian people. After the signing of the trilateral statement, Azerbaijan regularly incites provocations on the borders of Armenia and Artsakh, targets the civilian population, continues to hold prisoners of war, destroys and appropriates the Armenian cultural sites and heritage in the territories under its control.

– In the context of geopolitical events, the Armenian authorities and national structures should be vigilant so that the right of self-determination of the people of Artsakh does not become a subject of bargaining. Peace must be based on the principles of justice, dignity and respect for rights.

– Peace cannot be established at the expense of or the humiliation of national dignity, in conditions of incessant encroachments on the territorial integrity of the native state, the presence of prisoners of war, the constant threats of Azerbaijan, or the propaganda of anti-Armenianism. Peace must be based on the principles of justice, dignity and respect for rights.

– Regardless of the existing pressures, external threats, especially in the conditions of internal social polarization, the RA authorities should not take steps endangering independent Armenian statehood, the future of Artsakh, and should not compromise on the commitment to the fundamental rights of the nation and the pursuit of historical justice.

The Supreme Spiritual Council is deeply concerned with the complicated situation, the internal political developments in the homeland, relying on the mercy of the Supreme Lord and the wisdom of our people, urges:

– To prioritize the national-state interest, to act responsibly with a clear conscience, to seek dignified solutions to problems exclusively in our common will and consensus,

– To make every effort in the Homeland and in the Diaspora to strengthen our national unity by eliminating divisive sectarianism, to strengthen the homeland, to raise the issue everywhere in the international arena about the violation of our people’s rights, to pursue international recognition of the Armenian Genocide and to fight for the protection of our national identity and values,

– To demonstrate tolerance, lawfulness and respect for everyone’s rights in internal political processes to peaceful assemblies, regardless of political views or official functions, excluding any kind of violence, disproportionate use of force, provocation or violation of the law. Hate speech, insult, and incitement to enmity can never be good.

The Supreme Spiritual Council calls on our faithful people all over the world to continue to support our sisters and brothers in Artsakh with willing commitments to contribute to the strengthening of the Artsakh Republic, in order to secure a peaceful and secure life. We pray for the peace and progress of our country, we ask for the blessing and support of the Almighty God for our people.

Let the prayer for the homeland be constant on the lips of the children of our nation.

[Unofficial Translation from Original in Armenian]