05, 2015

Congratulatory address by President Serzh Sargsyan on Republic Day


Dear compatriots,

I congratulate you on the occasion of Republic Day.

May 28 certainly decorates our history’s bright pages. It is a glorious example for our people of heroically defending its right to life by itself and a brilliant start for restoration of the Armenian statehood after a centuries-old interval.

The May victories gained over the Turkish army in Sardarapat, Bash Aparan and Gharakilisa saved the last fragments of Eastern Armenia and the Armenians living there. It was clear to all that Eastern Armenia was going to face the same fate as Western Armenians.

This year, numerous events marking the Armenian Genocide Centennial have been held both in Armenia and the diaspora and are yet to be held. Today, our duty is to state that the total annihilation of Armenians was held up by Armenian commoners and peasants, warriors and political figures, teachers and clergymen. And it was held up though the heroic May battles, through the creation of Armenian statehood, thus making the last part of historical Armenia a safe haven for thousand orphans and refugees.

May 28 is the starting date of Armenians’ salvation, survival and revival. Of course, the declaration of independence did not put end to our difficulties; we faced new challenges with which we coped, however, as an already established nation-state.

We must take into account one more important circumstance: it was exactly on the battlefields of the May battles that the Armenian army started to form and take shape. Only three years had passed since 1915, and we, lacking statehood, self-organized into a military force which managed to give a strong counter blow to the enemy. This is the historic feat of the generation which was destined to witness the most terrific. But it was also destined to witness the most desired – independence Armenia.

The state symbols of our first republic – the flag, the coat of arms and the anthem – are the contemporary state symbols of the Republic of Armenia. We are traveling along a new road which started on May 28 1918.

However, the essence and precepts of the first republic are more important than symbols. Out of them, I would select the most pivotal ones:

1. Armenia is the homeland of All Armenians.
2. Armenia is a republic resting on democratic values.
3. The Republic of Armenia is a social state.

These are the beacons that continue to guide us today while navigating in sometimes really stormy eaters.

Eternal glory to all those Armenians who created May 28.

Eternal glory and remembrance to the memories of all those martyrs who made May 28 possible.

Glory to the First Republic of Armenia which is the pillar of present and future Armenia.

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