Updated: Jun 16, 2021
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan at the NATO Summit in Belgium on July 11, 2018
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues leadership spearheaded a letter signed by 48 Members of Congress sent to President Donald Trump today urging him to meet with newly-appointed Prime Minister of Armenia, Nikol Pashinyan, during the annual United Nations General Assembly held in New York in September, the Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) reported.
“A conversation between President Trump and Prime Minister Pashinyan emphasizing economic development, security, and democracy is critical for a strong pivot towards a strategic partnership between our countries,” Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) said.
The letter to President Trump says, in part: “The peaceful transition of power after the revolution is a clear indication of the will of the Armenian people, strongly demonstrating their commitment to a fairer and more democratic state. As Armenia seeks to bolster government transparency, strengthen democratic institutions, and empower civil society, it is critical for the United States to deepen its ties with this regional partner at every level of government.”
In addition, the bipartisan initiative also requested “a series of high-level conversations between [the President’s] Cabinet Secretaries and their counterparts in Armenia – many of whom have recently been appointed as members of the newly formed government.”
This month, Armenia’s First Deputy Prime Minister Ararat Mirzoyan traveled to Washington, D.C. and met with the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, Wess Mitchell; Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD); Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Congressmen Dave Trott (R-MI), Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), and David Valadao (R-CA); House Democracy Partnership President Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Vice President David Price (D-NC); and Congressman Brian Mast (R-FL). He also spoke before an audience of academics, diplomats, and government officials at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Last week, Armenia’s Minister of Justice Artak Zeynalyan attended the inaugural Ministerial Meeting on Advancing Religious Freedom in Washington, hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo. Currently, Armenia’s Minister of Diaspora Mkhitar Hayrapetyan is traveling throughout the United States, and hosting community town hall discussions in Los Angeles, Boston, and the Greater New York Area.
“On behalf of the Armenian Assembly of America, I would like to thank the Co-Chairs and Vice Chairs of the Caucus for strengthening U.S.-Armenia relations and to help solidify Armenia’s democratic reforms. We appreciate the leadership of the Armenian Caucus in this regard,” Assembly Executive Director Bryan Ardouny said. “In September, the Assembly is holding a National Advocacy Conference, which will provide a great opportunity for activists to come to D.C. and help reinforce U.S.-Armenia relations and the democratic developments in Armenia,” Ardouny added.
Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt membership organization.