Remarks of Foreign Minister Zohrab Mnatsakanyan at the opening ceremony of the Village of La Francophonie09 October, 2018
Dear OIF administrator,
My dear colleague, Minister of Culture,
Dear Mr Deputy Mayor,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear citizens of Yerevan and Armenia
It is a great honour for me to welcome you to this beautiful place, Freedom Square, to open together the Village of La Francophonie.
La Francophonie can indeed be proud of its family, whose values give it strength and which is truly a diverse and united tapestry of cultures. Today I welcome all the participants of the Village who have arrived to Yerevan from all corners of the Francophone world.
The 17th summit of La Francophonie has opened in this welcoming Village its doors to musicians, artists, connoisseurs and all citizens who will present their national cultures, traditions, unique cuisines, arts, and theater both in the pavilions and on this scene. Armenia and its capital Yerevan have spared no efforts to welcome with the traditional Armenian hospitality our many guests, many of whom are visiting our country for the first time.
It has been mentioned many times throughout the summit that the motto “Living Together” is used by governments but applies to citizens, to peoples. Your presence here is the embodiment of that motto, that ideology. How beautiful it is that we are gathered in Yerevan today, sharing our cultures, values and heritage with our friends, alongside all the Francophone nations and peoples represented here today. This is the embodiment of that diversity. How beautiful this world becomes when we are able to live together, to understand each other, to live in peace, with mutual respect and understanding.
I would like to express my gratitude to all the participants of this Village who did not hesitate to make the long journey to be here so that the tapestry we have created today would truly be whole, so that no fragment would be missing.
The interpersonal contacts and cultural exchanges facilitated by this Village throughout the next 6 days will greatly promote the mutual enrichment of the Francophone public in Yerevan. Today, we are also celebrating the Youth Day of La Francophonie. By cherishing our knowledge, our experience and values and transferring them to future generations, we can ensure that our societies will become more tolerant and conscious.
“Living Together” is the motto that Armenia have chosen as the slogan of the 17th summit of La Francophonie. It is my sincere hope that this motto will guide us not only throughout the summit and the days of this Village, but also in the future, leading our people to a world without war and conflict, a world full of fraternity, harmony, happiness, growth, cultural exchange and mutual respect.
Therefore, my dear friends, let us keep this light shining.