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Deputy Minister Hovakimyan participated in the 67th Session of the Executive Committee of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

04.10.2016

The delegation headed by Ashot Hovakimian, the Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia, which also included Gagik Yeganyan, the Head of RA State Migration Service, participated in the 67th Session of the Executive Committee of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees held on October 3-7 in Geneva.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon delivered opening remarks, followed by the speech of Filippo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
In his remarks, Ashot Hovakimian, the Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia, touched upon the refugee related global challenges, highlighting Armenia’s readiness to continue the effective cooperation with the High Commissioner’s office towards addressing the needs of displaced people and providing necessary support to refugees and shelter-seeking persons.

The Deputy Foreign Minister made a reference to the issue of Armenian refugees from Azerbaijan, who as a result of Azerbaijan’s policy of ethnic cleansing had to flee their homes and become refugees. The Deputy Foreign Minister also presented the military aggression unleashed by Azerbaijan against Nagorno-Karabakh in April, accompanied by grave violations of international humanitarian law.

Ashot Hovakimyan also focused on the issue of refugees from Syria, noting that Armenia has sheltered more than 20,000 refugees, becoming the third largest recipient of Syrian refugees in Europe on per capita basis.

In his response to the speech by the Armenian delegation, High Commissioner Filippo Grandi noted that the UN Refugee Agency will continue to support the resolution of the displaced persons’ problem in the region, attaching importance to the settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict, as soon as possible, and expressing support to the efforts of the Minsk Group Co-Chairs.

The Deputy Foreign Minister who was participating in the works of the session, had tete-a-tete meeting with Filippo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

In the framework of the event, Nansen Refugee Award Annual Ceremony took place. The award was granted to Hellenic Rescue Team operating on the island of Lesvos and Efi Latsoudi NGO which has established a shelter for refugees on the island to voluntarily aid the refugees arriving to Greece.

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