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Biden Congratulates Pashinian


U.S. President Joe Biden holds a news conference after the U.S.-Russia summit with Russia's President Vladimir Putin, in Geneva, Switzerland, June 16, 2021.

U.S. President Joe Biden has congratulated Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian on winning Armenia’s recent general elections and said his administration wants to deepen U.S.-Armenian relations.

“I look forward to working with you and your new Cabinet to deepen and expand our bilateral relations,” Pashinian’s press office quoted Biden as saying in a congratulatory message sent late on Wednesday.

According to the office, Biden said that Armenia has become a more democratic and less corrupt country during Pashinian’s rule and that the United States will support more reforms promised by the Armenian government.

He also said Washington also remains committed to facilitating a “comprehensive” settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict together with Russia and France, the two other co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group. In that context, he vowed more U.S. efforts to secure the release of Armenian prisoners still held in Azerbaijan nine months after a Russian-brokered ceasefire stopped the war in Karabakh.

In a June 29 tweet, Biden commended the Armenian authorities for holding “successful” parliamentary elections on June 20.

The U.S. State Department earlier welcomed European observers’ preliminary conclusion that the snap elections were “competitive and generally very well-managed.” It urged the Armenian opposition to accept the official vote results that gave victory to Pashinian’s Civil Contract party.

The two main Armenian opposition groups continued to reject the results as fraudulent.

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