PM: “Guaranteeing the preservation of national, religious minorities’ identity in Armenia is a matter of principled approach for the Government”
Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attended the opening of a conference on freedom of religion or belief in Armenia, Georgia and around the world. Armenian Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Netherlands to Armenia and Georgia Johannes Douma, UN Resident Coordinator for Armenia Shombi Sharp, Eurasia Partnership Foundation (EPF) Director General Gevorg Ter-Gabrielyan and others participated in the event.
Addressing the conference participants, Prime Minister Pashinyan said: “It should be noted that freedom of religion is one of the most important freedoms because I am at least convinced that a person believing in God first of all believes in himself. Consequently, freedom of religion, freedom to believe in God is first of all the freedom of an individual to believe in himself.
Of course, there are such people who believe in themselves, on the contrary, by not believing in God. But in the same way, the human being becomes a key player in the process of self-confidence. This is very important. I mean that freedom of religion is human being’s freedom.
Freedom of religion is one of the most important freedoms, and it relates directly to all those values that are universally recognized by mankind - whether democracy, transparency, human rights, freedoms, justice or the like. In this regard, I am pleased to note that the Republic of Armenia is a country that is pursuing freedom of religion, freedom of belief and conscience. And especially, the New Armenia is fully committed to these values. The fact that the national minorities feel comfortable in Armenia is a vivid evidence of what I just said. I mean that providing guarantees for the preservation of national, religious minorities’ identity in Armenia is a matter of principled approach for the Government. They should feel free to preserve, develop and be proud of their ethnic identity.
Generally speaking, religion and inter-religious relations are perhaps the most important topic because it has long been accepted that the differences between religion and religious perceptions are usually separated from each other. But we consider this situation quite strange also because most of the popular or major religions originate from the same God. And this makes us say that the dividing lines do not emanate from people who deal with religions but from their interpretation, because our faith and conviction is that religion is actually supposed to unite peoples; religion is indeed for peace and harmony; religion is in fact a way to happiness.
And if it is true that the dividing lines were drawn by virtue of religious doctrines, that is, by giving different interpretations, then dividing lines can be removed in the same way by those who gave such interpretations with new approaches, and the most important precondition here us mutual respect for others’ beliefs, emotions, ideologies and perceptions.
Bearing this in mind, I attach special importance to this forum which highlights the need for mutual respect. Conferences like this should help us come to a common interpretation of the general idea of religious consciousness of peace, freedom, love and harmony.
I do believe that this is possible. I know how challenging it is, but no one should beware of hardships, especially in New Armenia. I want the forum to pursue this difficult task with vehemence and courage.
* * *
The aim of the annual conference is to provide comprehensive discussions between Armenian, Georgian and international partners on developments and challenges in the field of freedom of religion and belief, strengthening Armenian-Georgian ties and promoting international cooperation. It serves as a platform where key stakeholders from different angles discuss issues of freedom, situation and development of freedom of religion and belief in the world, in Armenia, in Georgia, as well as develop appropriate recommendations for its improvement.
The forum will be addressed by: UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Ahmed Shahid (OSCE / ODIHR) Senior Adviser on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Kishan Manocha, Senior Advisor to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in the South Caucasus Vladimir Shkolnikov, Director of the Religious Council attached to the Office of Public Defender of Georgia Beka Mindiashvili, Director of the Institute for Tolerance and Diversity Mariam Gavtadze, Vice-President of RA National Assembly Standing Committee on Education Hovhannes Hovhannisyan and other experts specialized in this field.
Relatives of Four-Day Artsakh War Heroes to Be Baptized at Armenian Church in Shushi
Armen Sarkissian Send Condolence Telegram on Death of His Holiness Aram I's Mother
Houthi Group Attacked Saudi Arabia’s Oil Facilities
Trump Announced That bin Laden's Son Was Killed
Tunisia Holds Presidential Elections
Feast of Exaltation of the Holy Cross
5 Day Weather Forecast in Armenia
President of Artsakh Receives Delegation of the Yerevan State Medical University
Arms Sale by Some CSTO Members to Azerbaijan Discredits Organization: Armenian MFA
Vanadzor-Alaverdi-Bagratashen Highway is Closed for Truck Traffic
Eve of the Feast of Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Artsakh Republic President Met with a Group of Participants of ''The Past, Present and Future of the Armenian Statehood'' International Conference
World Championship: Greco-Roman Wrestlers Leave for Kazakhstan
President of Artsakh Convenes Working Consultation
Alex Chung to Join Kim Kardashian West on a Panel at WCIT 2019 in Yerevan
Armenia’s MFA Responds to Russia’s Statement about Granting Status of Observer to Azerbaijan in CSTO
5 Day Weather Forecast in Armenia
Armenia's Defense Ministry Plans to Establish a New Agency
The Proposal for Organizing a Meeting Between Armenian and Azerbaijani Foreign Ministers Was Voiced by the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group
Trump Says Iranian Leadership ‘Wants to Meet’
Famous Russian Singer Lyubov Uspenskaya Performed an Armenian Song in Azerbaijan (VIDEO)
The Government Dismisses the Mayors, then Beats the Deputies Elected by the People: Garo Paylan
Models and Celebrities Love Kim Kardashian's Vogue Arabia Cover
Mikael Minasyan: Serzh Sargsyan Will Be Arrested to Sidetrack Armenia Public From Real Issues for a While More (NEWS.am)
Government Sets up Terms and Conditions for Affordable Long-Term Mortgage Lending for Contract Servicemen
Commemoration of Sts. John the Baptist and Job the Righteous
Mine Exploitation Means 10-25 Blasts a Day, with Each Blast Raising 25 Tons of Dust: Ex-Governor of Vayots Dzor
Declaration on Proclamation of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic
Not Rejection But Eexpression of Ssovereignty: Armenia’s FM on PM’s Decision Not to Participate in Economic Forum in Poland
"Our Task is to Get the Best Possible Result for Each Dram Invested and Spent in Every Area" - PM Attends My Step for Kotayk Marz Investment Forum
Wind: 6 km/h