LET US UNITE AROUND THE SUPREME INTERESTS
OF OUR NATION AND HOMELAND
On New Year’s Eve, we greet the beloved sons and daughters of our people with Christian love and patriarchal blessings.
The New Year is a moment that invites the person, whether individually or collectively, to introspection and self-examination. Let us turn our eyes to the Armenian life.
Like entire mankind, our people continue to live in the challenging circumstances created by the pandemic. All the Diaspora communities, to a greater or lesser extent, are dealing with a variety of concerns. In this context, the Armenians of Lebanon in particular are going through challenging times because of the unprecedented financial crisis. Despite the present dire circumstances, we will continue with renewed faith and resolve our collective commitment to reconstruction, always being with the sons and daughters of our people and by their side.
Indeed, we have proclaimed 2022 the Year of the Diaspora. I invite all our structures, the press, the intellectuals, and the communities, to revalue and reorganize the Diaspora with a realistic approach and a comprehensive vision, having the Patriarchal Message we have published as a guide. This is a mandatory and urgent priority.
Let us turn to Armenia. Our homeland continues to be rocked by waves of uncertainty and hopelessness. On the one hand, the tense political situation in Armenia weakens our collective strength. On the other, the enemy imposes conditions from a triumphalist standpoint, ignoring the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Armenia as well as international law.
Yes, ours is a small country: we need to have a realistic view of the evolution of geopolitical circumstances in the region. Nevertheless, that does not mean that Armenia will not have a say on its national interests and issues that pertain its present and future.
Yes, we agree to a general and permanent peace in the region, but not from defeatist and concessive positions. Yes, we agree to projects that contribute to economic development in the region. But not at the expense of Armenia and Artsakh’s sovereignty, independence, security, and territorial integrity.
Today, there is an attempt to submit Armenia and the entire region to a pan-Turkic strategy coordinated by Turkey and Azerbaijan. Indeed, any agreement signed with Azerbaijan, in which Artsakh is included as part of Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity, and likewise, any agreement with Turkey that accepts the explicit preconditions set by Turkey, would be an undermining of the Proclamation of Independence and the principles of the Constitution on the part of Armenia. The Diaspora cannot remain indifferent to such dangerous steps. The Diaspora must have its active participation in the discussion of Armenian issues. Our enemies and friends must learn that Armenia is not alone, is not orphaned, the entire Diaspora is on its side, the Armenian people are one and an indivisible whole.
For different reasons, we lost a battle but not the war. The struggle of the Armenian people continues, for the sake of strengthening the independence of Armenia and Artsakh and the reestablishment of our national rights.
The struggle of the Armenian people must continue:
–Reorganizing the Armenian army and arming it with modern weapons.
–Defending our borders, even resorting to popular resistance according to need.
–Negotiating with martial spirit.
–Uniting around the supreme and general interests of our homeland.
Let us renew our national vows and strengthened with greater faith and willpower greet each other saying Happy New Year. May God bless all the sons and daughters of our nation and protect our nation and our homeland away from all misfortune and evil.
CATHOLICOS ARAM I
GREAT HOUSE OF CILICIA
December 26, 2021