YEREVAN — Armenia’s political and religious leaders, including Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians and President Armen Sarkissian attended the celebrations dedicated to the Republic Day on May 28.
The prime minister laid a wreath at the monument to the memory of the heroes of Sardarapat battle and paid tribute to them. Then a memorial dedicated to the 140th anniversary of the founder of the First Republic of Armenia, Aram Manukyan, was unveiled. The monument was created by architect Hayk Asatryan and sculptor Artak Hambardzumyan.
Afterwards, the Prime Minister watched the exhibition titled “Formation of the First Armenian Republic and the history of May’s heroic battles” at the National Museum of History of Armenian Ethnography and Liberation Struggle of Sardarapat memorial.
In his speech Pashinyan praised the anniversary, adding that the declaration of independence “happened at a time when it seemed that the history of the Armenian people reached its final stage. Just 500 years after the collapse of the Cilician Armenia, the Armenian people who had no state, were subjected to a grave catastrophe, a genocide. 1.5 million Armenians were killed, hundreds of thousands of refugees were in danger.”
Yet, instead of defeat, a new country was reclaimed. “The unexpected happened, and the Armenian people gained what seemed to have been lost irrevocably, gained statehood, acquired a state flag, acquired a state emblem, acquired a national anthem, which expressed our nation’s The tragic, but at the same time, the miraculous story of the historical revival.”
He praised the heroes and members of the government of the First Republic, as well as Armenia’s population for supporting it. He went on to praise modern officials and heroes, from government to sports and science.