ArmInfo."Official Yerevan and the Armenian people are grateful for the principled and unanimous message of the Pope of Rome to the recognition of the Armenian Genocide," said Armenian Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan at a press conference following a meeting with Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the Secretary for Relations with States within the Holy See's Secretariat of State.
As the head of the Armenian Foreign Ministry pointed out, the visit of the High Representative of the Vatican is another step towards the development of relations between Armenia and the Holy See.
"Archbishop Gallagher has a great contribution to deepening both the interstate relations between the Republic of Armenia and the Vatican, and, in general, in international relations," Mnatsakyan stated.
According to him, although relations between Armenia and the Holy See have a centuries-old history, they were given a new round after Armenia gained independence.
As the head of the Armenian Foreign Ministry emphasized, in the early 1990's, the Pope of Rome, now St. John Paul, donated to the Ashotsk district the ''Tiramayr Narek'' charity hospital, which operates to date and provides free services.
According to Mnatsakanyan, the Armenian people warmly recalls the visit of the Roman Pontiff John Paul II to Armenia in connection with the celebration of the 1700th anniversary of the proclamation of Christianity as the state religion. One of the significant events in the bilateral relations was the assignment of the title of Archimandrite of the Ecumenical Church to the Armenian saint Gregory Narekatsi by Pope Francis, and then in 2018 the grand opening of the Narekatsi monument in the Vatican. "I want to note that the high level of bilateral relations is the result of personal interest of His Holiness, for which we are grateful," he said, stressing also the interest of the Armenian side in deepening relations. As Mnatsakanyan noted, during the meeting with the representative of the Vatican, contemporary challenges were addressed at the regional and international levels, issues of protecting the interests of religious minorities, Christians, and ensuring the preservation of the historical and cultural heritage of Christianity in the Middle East. The head of the Armenian Foreign Ministry presented the processes surrounding the peaceful settlement of the Karabakh conflict and the principled position of Armenia on the issue. Zohrab Mnatsakanyan also stated that the that official Yerevan and the Armenian people are grateful for the principled and unanimous message of the Pope of Rome to the recognition of the Armenian Genocide."The unconditional condemnation of this crime is important not only from the point of view of truth and historical justice, but also is a great contribution to the prevention of such crimes in the future and the achievement of agreement between states," he said. The RA Foreign Minister also spoke about the internal agenda of Armenia and the work of the government aimed at reform.