Statement Statement- Western Diocese of the Armenian Church

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11 August 2024

Published - 14 June 2024

We, the members of the Supreme Spiritual Council, coming together in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin and with the blessings and high presidency of His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; during the discussions of agenda issues, we reflected with deep concern on the internal political problems and external security challenges facing our homeland.

The policy conducted by the RA authorities in the post-war period, and especially the recent unilateral territorial concessions made in the name of demarcation process, have caused serious new worries and anxieties both in the homeland and in the diaspora, giving rise to the formation of mistrust, leading to the demand for the resignation of the Prime Minister of Armenia.

However, the fears expressed by the people about the security challenges facing the homeland, the calls and urges of the national structures and the professional community, are ignored by the RA authorities and are countered with threats of a possible war. And the righteous grievances formed against the authorities in public circles, which are manifested through peaceful acts of protest and disobedience, are tried to be silenced by actions aimed at demeaning the dignity of the protesters and the use of disproportionate force.

We strongly condemn the obviously illegal steps taken and the measures taken against the participants of the peaceful gathering in Yerevan on June 12, as a result of which there are many victims among the protesters and the police, including those with serious physical injuries.

Our appeal is to the authorities of RA to refrain from violence, hate and enmity. Our appeal is also to the compatriots expressing their voice of protest to act with all vigilance and respect for the law. The current dangerous situation longs for dignified solutions, the current crisis for political dialogue in calmness and sensibility. It is also reprehensible that the high-ranking representatives of the government and their supporters have consistently taken responsibility for the organization of rallies by attributing baseless and untrue news to the Church, trying to justify their anti-Church attitude, one of the shameful manifestations of which was the provocation against the Catholicos of All Armenians and clergymen at the Sardarapat memorial complex on May 28.

At all times, the duty and mission of the native authorities is to maintain intra-societal solidarity and to form a nationwide community, which is vitally necessary, especially in today's conditions. Power itself should not be a mere aspiration for anyone or any political force, but first of all, a means of prudent, circumspect and selfless service to the people and the motherland and building a peaceful and secure life.

We believe that the love and responsibility for the motherland will smooth the way, to put our national potential and all our abilities at the service of the defense and strengthening of the Republic of Armenia and to make our universal vision of the future a reality.

May the Almighty Lord keep and protect our people all over the world united, and lead our homeland in a peaceful and safe way to bright new destinations.