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Zohrab Mnatsakanyan

In an interview with Greek television station MEGA, Armenia’s Foreign Affairs Minister said that Turkey has violated Hagia Sophia, a symbol for harmony, tolerance and dialogue.

The former permanent representative of Armenia to the UN but now Foreign Minister, Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, stressed that his country will stand by Greece in case of tensions with Turkey and condemns its illegal actions in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The Armenian Foreign Minister stressed that in case Turkey supports Azerbaijan with weapons and personnel, his country will defend its rights.

“We will defend ourselves, we will strengthen our defence, we will continue to work with our international partners. We need peace and stability in the region,” he said, adding that “we reject the language of threats.”

“In order to review these policies from a state that lives in denial and impurity and justifies genocide… This is not the way for a state that wants to contribute to peace in the region,” he continued.

Regarding the Turkish President’s aspirations for the establishment of neo-Ottomanism in the wider region, the Armenian Foreign Minister said that his country looks forward to peace and stability in the region.

“Greece is a country that works very hard for peace and stability in the region. Armenia pursues the same goals,” he said.

Referring to Hagia Sophia and its transformation into a mosque, the Armenian Foreign Minister stressed that the decision by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is an insult to mutual respect.

“The act of turning Hagia Sophia into a mosque is an insult to the symbol of harmony and mutual respect,” Armenia’s top diplomat said.

Mnatsakanyan stressed that Armenia stands by Greece and Cyprus in the face of Turkish challenges.

“We emphasise our strong support in Greece and Cyprus. It is a serious act of destabilisation, which highlights the aggression that Turkey continues to show,” adding that in case of a conflict between Greece and Turkey, Armenia will stand by Greece.

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