On November 24th, in the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; Mr. Bratislav Gashich, Minister of Defense of the Republic of Serbia, and his delegation. They were accompanied by Mr. Davit Tonoyan, Deputy Defense Minister of Armenia; and His Grace Bishop Vrtanes Abrahamyan, Head Chaplain of the Republic of Armenia Armed Forces Ministry
During the meeting, His Holiness welcomed the cooperation between the defense ministries of the two countries, and expressed hope that it will be fruitful and contribute to the further development of military skills. His Holiness expressed his hope that the Armenian and Serbian soldiers not need to take up arms and defend their Homelands, but serve as peacekeepers to guarantee an undisturbed, safe and prosperous life for their people.
The Catholicos of All Armenians made particular reference to the difficulties that befell the Armenian and Serbian peoples throughout history, noting that thru the leadership of the Armenian Apostolic and Serbian Orthodox Churches, they prevailed with courage, strong faith and love for the Homeland.
Minister Gashich expressed his gratitude to His Holiness for the warm welcome. Speaking about the historical past and current cooperation between the two countries, Minister Gashich stressed that the bilateral relations are now much more than just friendly relations. In his remarks, the Minister reflected on the life of Serbia’s Armenian community.
The Armenian Pontiff and the Minister of Defense spoke about the service of clergymen in the armies of the two countries, as well as on the warm relations between the Armenian Apostolic and Serbian Orthodox Churches. On this occasion, His Holiness was pleased to note the participation of the representatives of the Serbian Orthodox Church during the events organized in the Mother on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide and of their assistance to the Armenian Church and people.
The meeting was attended by His Eminence Archbishop Nathan Hovhannisyan, Director of the External Relations and Protocol Department of Mother See.