06, 2008

President Serzh Sarkissian visited the newly constructed building of the Ministry of Defense

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Today President Serzh Sarkissian visited the newly constructed building of the Ministry of Defense, toured the premises and observed the works. Afterwards, Serzh Sarkissian in his capacity as Commander-in-Chief conducted a meeting with the highest leadership of the Ministry.

In his remarks the President of Armenia said particularly, “I know almost all of you personally, I know your strong and weak points, and your capabilities. You too know me well, you are familiar with my personality, and my work style. You know that issues of the further strengthening of our armed forces and our country’s security in general have always been the most important issues for me. Be assured that my vigor has not subsided. On the contrary, I will double my efforts and have no doubt that even though our country has a number of socio-economic problems, our armed forces will have everything they need to protect our country. However, it does not mean indulging in luxury or excess. We have a problem of efficient spending and achieving better results.”

The Minister of Defense, Seyran Ohanian presented in his report the timetable of events planned for 2008 and spoke about the reforms currently underway.

Next, the President of Armenia spoke about the main tasks before the army and subsequent steps.

The President of Armenia attached importance to the issue of constant work directed at raising the combat abilities of the army. Noting, that the NK peace process is still underway, he said, “as long as the problem is not solved entirely there is a danger of the resumption of military actions. Thus, the army has to be prepared: strong and ready to stop any aggression.”

Serzh Sarkissian spoke also about the relations between army and politics and underscored that army is an apolitical structure and its objective is the protection of the country’s security. Servicemen have no right to engage in politics.

President Sarkissian paid special attention to the army-society ties. In his words, even though among the state structures the army enjoys the highest degree of public trust, it is not enough. The level of public trust should be constantly upgraded, involving in the process the parents of the servicemen. It is necessary do get to a stage when after leaving the active service former soldiers become army promoters.” Serzh Sarkissian said that in his opinion the most important indicator of trust is the confidence with which a mother sends her son to the army, knowing that he will be back sound and well - a real man and a rightful citizen of the Republic of Armenia.”

Concluding the meeting, the President of Armenia said, “It is necessary to constantly improve and develop our armed forces, to continue the reformation in the area of defense which is an important guarantee of the powerful and combat ready armed forces.”

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