The ARF-Dashnaktsutyun Bureau held its plenary session in Beirut, Lebanon, during November 29-December 1.
The agenda included the approval of plans based on proposals-decisions of previous plenary sessions, the evaluation of completed activities, forthcoming organizational and public relations tasks, the discussion of internal and external challenges facing Armenia.
The plenary session discussed the new situation in the South Caucasus, the tasks to be undertaken by the party, its affiliate organizations and the Armenian Cause offices in defending the statehood, and the immediate steps to be taken regarding the Artsakh(*) issue, the recent developments in Armenian-Turkish relations, and the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
It was reiterated that the final settlement of the Artsakh issue is possible only through peaceful negotiation process, where the Republic of Mountainous Karabakh is a negotiating party.
Considering that following the Moscow Declaration Azerbaijan has not backed down from its warmongering rhetoric, it is extremely important to continue keeping the issue on the pan-national agenda, as an issue related to the existence and security of Armenia and the Armenian people. For us, the basis of the negotiating process should be the fact of self-determination by the people of Artsakh, expressed on two occasions, through the 1991 independence and 2006 MKR constitutional referendums. The mutual concession can only be equal, proportionate, and concurrent and part of a comprehensive settlement package.
Reaffirming that as neighboring states Armenia and Turkey should continue their efforts towards normalizing relations, it was stressed that thus far Turkey has not taken any positive steps. On the contrary, there are attempts to use the ongoing meetings as hindrance to the genocide recognition process, and make the relationship of the two states conditional to Armenia’s relations with a third state, namely Azerbaijan.
In this context, it was appreciated that the highest authorities of our country are in complete accord that the recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide in general, and by Turkey in particular, is one of the strategic directions of Armenia’s foreign policy. On the other hand, it was stressed, that the present importance of regulating Armenia-Turkey relations should not be valued more than the rights of generations to come.
Decisions were adopted regarding all the discussed issues, always based on the party’s fundamental policy, that the foremost issue for the ARF-Dashnaktsutyun is ensuring the independence, security and utmost self-reliance of the Republic of Armenia.
ARF-Dashnaktsutyun Press Office
Yerevan, 2 December 2008
(*) Armenian historical name of Karabakh