Closed borders, threats of use of force, xenophobia and racism have no place in the 21st century

President Serzh Sargsyan received today the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso. The results of the meeting were summed up at a joint press conference.

The Armenian people have always been steady in their aspiration to have a government system anchored on European values – freedom, democracy and rule of law. We view the cooperation with European structures as an important factor for Armenia’s institutional reinforcement and implementation of effective reforms,” Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan told reporters.

President Sargsyan said he reiterated Armenia’s resoluteness to deepen and develop the Armenia-EU cooperation. “We aim to complete the negotiations on the Association Agreement, including the creation of a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area, before the summit in Vilnius scheduled for November 2013 and thus raise our relations to a new level.”

“During the meeting I expressed our conviction that it’s necessary to deepen the cooperation within the framework of the Eastern Partnership format. Closed borders,  threats of use of force, xenophobia and racism have no place in the 21st century. All our statements and actions become imperfect, if against their background one of the partner countries calls the people of another partner country an enemy. This is a classical and disgusting example of hatred,” President Sargsyan stated.

“We cannot pretend that it’s normal that Turkey, which is a member of the G20 and bids for EU membership, illegally keeps the border of its Eastern partner Armenia closed. This does not only contradict the simple logic of partnership, but also violates the basic principles and norms of international law. In Europe borders should not be used as dividing lines,” Serzh Sargsyan stated.

“Armenia has declared on many occasions that Nagorno Karabakh is part of the European family, the bearer of the same values. Therefore, we attach importance to the immediate contacts of EU representatives with Nagorno Karabakh, particularly their periodic visits,” he said.

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