On Current Developments in Armenia

OSCE emblem at the entrance to the Hofburg Congress Center, Vienna. (USOSCE/Colin Peters)

On Current Developments in Armenia

As delivered by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Harry Kamian
to the Permanent Council, Vienna
April 26, 2018

The coming days represents a historic opportunity for the people of Armenia and its leaders as they embark on the process of forming a new government. We urge all sides to engage constructively in dialogue within the legal framework of the Armenian constitution. We look forward to working closely with the new government on our many areas of shared interest. As a friend and a partner to Armenia, we commend the Armenian people for engaging in dialogue to forge their sovereign future through democratic and peaceful means.

The United States commends the decision taken by former Prime Minister Sargsyan to resign. We thank him for his contributions to the strong U.S.-Armenia partnership.

We applaud both the police and those exercising their right to peaceful assembly for showing restraint and ensuring that the events over the past two weeks were mostly peaceful and largely non-violent. The fact there was no major violence in these last few weeks is encouraging. We continue to urge all parties to exercise restraint and avoid any escalation or violent actions. We note the authorities have launched investigations into several incidents in which violence was reported against journalists and protesters and we anticipate a full and transparent legal process in those instances.

Finally, we encourage Armenia to continue its cooperation with the OSCE, now and in the future. Today’s initiative by Armenia to keep the Permanent Council informed of developments in the country is a positive step. The Armenian Cooperation Program provides a valuable mechanism for the OSCE to support the country. The United States stands ready to consider additional OSCE assistance.

Thank you, Mr. Chair.