Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan

Special Section on Cilicia and Treaty of Sèvres: Prime Minister Pashinyan Commemorates Centennial of Sèvres Treaty

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YEREVAN — On the 100th anniversary of the signing of Treaty of Sèvres, Armenian scholars held the “Treaty of Sevres and the Armenian Question” forum at the National Academy of Sciences in Yerevan on August 10. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan sent his comments to the seminar, where they were read.

I salute all the participants of the conference dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Sèvres. I express my deep gratitude for initiating this important event.

The Treaty of Sèvres has a significant place in the modern history of the Armenian people. It is not by chance that it continues to be the subject of scientific research and analysis. Therefore, it is very possible that our scientists’ impartial analysis of this document, signed a century ago, and the events that preceded it, will be available to both our people and the wider international community. Today’s conference serves this very purpose: I wish success to its work, wishing everyone fruitful discussions, new and possible discoveries.

The Sèvres Treaty is a historical fact. It remains so to this day. What is the use of this document for the Armenian people? Why is it still in the center of our attention?

First, the Treaty of Sèvres was based on the aftermath of World War I, one of the most dramatic pages in human history, almost two years after its end. Just as the Treaty of Versailles established peace in Europe, so the Treaty of Sèvres was established in the former Central Asian territories of the Ottoman Empire. It put an end to the suffering and deprivation of the peoples of the region because of the war. It signaled the end of the “cursed years.”

Like the Treaty of Versailles in Europe, the Treaty of Sèvres created a new system of interstate relations in the region. It introduced new principles and values, not only for peace but also for justice in Central Asia.

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The contract was based on the most advanced ideas of the time. The key there was the principle of self-determination and equality of nations. It put an end to the centuries-old slavery imposed by the empires, giving freedom and independence to the peoples of the region.

Moreover, by granting the right to establish nation-states in historical territories, it created favorable conditions for the further coexistence of the Muslim-Christian peoples, peaceful coexistence, the preservation of the region’s civilizational diversity, and the region.

Second, the Treaty of Sèvres is the international document that recognized and enshrined Armenia’s independence. The Republic of Armenia acted as an equal party to that document. Centuries after the loss of independence, the Armenian authorities for the first time signed an international treaty with the great powers of the world. The Republic of Armenia was recognized as a full member of international relations, an equal subject of international law, within the limits set out in the Treaty.

By being a party to the treaty, he recognized the contribution of Armenia, the Armenian people, to the victory of the Allies in World War I and the establishment of peace. It was emphasized that the role of the Armenian people in international relations and in the post-war world governance was properly assessed.

Third, the Treaty of the Sèvres, in its Article 89, established the indisputable historical connection of the Armenian people with the Armenian Highlands, where the Armenian people had been born, lived, created a state and culture for thousands of years.

And finally, the Treaty of Sèvres was signed in the period following the years of the Armenian Genocide, when the Ottoman Empire was trying to resolve the “Armenian question” by annihilating the Armenian people. The Armenian people were subjected to the most cruel and inhuman suffering. The losses he suffered were enormous. Meanwhile, the Treaty of Sèvres paved the way for overcoming the consequences of the genocide. The “Armenian question” was justly resolved in the historical cradle of the Armenian people through the creation of an independent state. Historical justice was being restored. Favorable conditions were created for the restoration of our people’s economic և demographic potential, its normal development: progress.

Although the Treaty of Sèvres was never implemented, it continues to be a historical fact that reflects our path to restoring an independent state. It is our duty to remember it, to realize it, to keep its advice.

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