From Armenia in brief: Armenian foreign minister travels to Georgia and Iran
Published: Saturday September 20, 2008
Edward Nalbandian, Armenia's foreign minister, traveled to Georgia on September 12 to meet his Georgian counterpart, Eka Tkeshelashvili. The foreign ministers discussed the recent developments in the region and possible solutions. Mr. Nalbandian said that he hoped that international efforts for a peaceful solution would affect change. According to Armenpress, Mr. Nalbandian also thanked Georgian authorities for ensuring the secure transportation of Armenian tourists who were in Ajaria when the conflict erupted. The two ministers also discussed the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict as well as Armenia-Turkey relations.
While in Georgia, Mr. Nalbandian also met with Georgian Prime Minister Lado Gurgenidze. They discussed the safe and uninterrupted import of Armenian goods through Georgian territory and a range of bilateral economic cooperation initiatives. Almost 70 percent of Armenia's trade turnover passes through Georgian territory. The same day, Mr. Nalbandian met with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili who said that Armenia is a stable, secure, and peaceful neighboring country with a common history that goes back for centuries.
From Georgia, Mr. Nalbandian then went to Iran, where he met with the Iranian president, foreign minister, speaker of the parliament, and the secretary of the Supreme National Security Council of Iran. According to Arminfo, Mr. Nalbandian and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad discussed the latest development in the region. Mr. Nalbandian thanked Iran for helping Armenia to transport vital cargo via its territory during the crisis in Georgia. The sides discussed different prospects for establishing cooperation and stability in the region. Mr. Ahmadinejad pointed out the importance of developing multilateral relations with Iran and extended an invitation to President Serge Sargsian to visit. Peace and stability were also high on the agenda when the two foreign ministers met. Mr. Nalbandian said that Armenia believed that any disputes had to be resolved peacefully through negotiations and dialogue.