On October 9, the Third International Meeting of Speakers of Eurasian Countries’ Parliaments was held in Antalya. In his speech the RA NA Deputy Speaker Eduard Sharmazanov noted:
“Dear Mr. Chairman,
Ladies and Gentlemen, First of all, I would like to extend my gratitude to the speakers of the Russian and Korean parliaments for initiating this event and express my appreciation for their efforts aimed at creating a platform for dialogue between the leaders of the legislative bodies of the countries of the largest continent. This current format of inter-parliamentary cooperation proved its importance within a short time.
As a cradle of ancient cultures and civilizations, the Eurasian region has a high economic potential. It is necessary to increase the cooperation of the countries of the continent in many areas.
Dear colleagues, Located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, for centuries Armenia was a link between the two parts of the world. Today, Armenia is an active member of the Eurasian Economic Union. We attach great importance to the development of cooperation of the Eurasian Economic Union with interested countries and key integration entities. Thus, during the past year Armenia signed the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement with the European Union. Our standing position is that membership in one integration community should not limit the ability of its members to cooperate with other international organizations, taking into account the compliance with all obligations.
The main prerequisites for the development of modern economic relations are open borders, free movement of resources, equal conditions of competition. In this regard, the blockade and closed borders are artificial and unacceptable obstacles to economic cooperation.
Unfortunately, Turkey, a country that organized such an important and representative event, has closed its borders with Armenia since 1993. Armenia has always advocated the development of bilateral relations with Turkey without preliminary conditions. The blockade of Armenia by Turkey is unacceptable.
Unfortunately, today our region is facing challenges such as terrorism, extremism, intolerance, and xenophobia.
This year, the world marks the 70th anniversary of the UN Convention of the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. The Armenian Genocide, the first genocide of the 20th century, was recognised by such countries as Russia, Germany, France, and every year the number of countries and organizations is growing. As a descendant of the genocide survivors, speaking from this rostrum, I declare that without recognising past crimes as the Genocide of Armenians, it is impossible to avoid new crimes.
Dear colleagues, Sustainable development of Eurasia is possible only in a safe environment. But in Eurasia there are regions covered by conflicts and where the restoration of lasting peace requires great efforts and will. The peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict continues to be one of the most important issues in our region. The militaristic rhetoric and aggressive actions chosen by Azerbaijan as their main foreign policy doctrine undermine the foundations of security and stability not only in the region, but also in the entire continent.
Armenia stands for resolution of the conflict solely by peaceful political means, through the mediation of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs' countries, based on the principles and norms of international law, the UN Charter, the provisions of the Helsinki Final Act, in particular: the non-use of force or threat of use of force, the right of peoples to self-determination and territorial integrity of states. This is not a territorial conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, as the Azerbaijani side is trying to present, but a question of the right of the Nagorno-Karabakh /Artsakh/ people to free self-determination. Conflict resolution without the full realization of this right is impossible.
Referring again to the agenda of our meeting, I would like to state that the basis of a lasting peace, security and sustainable development of the region can only be an open and constructive dialogue.
In conclusion, allow me thank you once again for organising today's meeting and reiterate the readiness of Armenia to host the Meeting of Speakers of Eurasian Countries Parliaments in 2020.”