By Danielle Saroyan
WASHINGTON — On Thursday, October 8, the Embassy of Armenia to the United States hosted a reception in honor of Armenian Independence Day. More than 100 people gathered at the embassy, including government officials from the US, Russia, Georgia, Poland and Kazakhstan.
Armenia’s Ambassador to the United States Tigran Sargsyan welcomed guests to the reception, including Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs at the US State Department John Heffern, Co-Chair of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group Ambassador James Warlick, and Armenian singer Nune Yesayan.
Sargsyan explained why the 24th Anniversary of Armenia’s independence is one of the most important dates on the calendar. He said, “The Armenian nation survived, the Armenian nation became even stronger and more united. And now, one hundred years later, I stand here in front of you all as the ambassador of an independent Armenia to the United States and congratulate you on the occasion of the 24th anniversary of Armenian statehood.”
Sargsyan emphasized the continuous assistance and friendship of western partners, especially the United States. He then introduced Heffern, who spoke about his tenure as the United States ambassador to Armenia from 2011 to 2014 and congratulated Armenia on its independence anniversary.
Sargsyan presented medals to two guests, Jirair Nishanian and Dr. Levon Avdoyan, on behalf of the government of Armenia. Nishanian received the Medal of Gratitude, awarded for state, economic, social, scientific-technical, and public activities, as well as for major personal contribution, many years’ devotion, and fruitful activities aimed at promoting the spheres of health, education, and culture. Avdoyan, Armenian and Georgian Area Specialist at the Library of Congress, received the Movses Khorenatsi Medal for outstanding achievements in the spheres of culture, art, literature, education, social sciences, and sports.