The conference was organized in cooperation with three universities, Yerevan State, Armenian American and Beirut Haykazyan, as well as the NGO “For Democracy Development”, Konrad Adenauer Foundation, “Bun TV” online channel, Khnko Aper Children’s Library and Galust Gyulbekyan Foundation.
The conference was opened by the welcoming speech of the Rector of the Beirut Haykazyan University, who was not physically present, but conveyed to the participants of the conference his message, focusing on the topic of the conference, presenting his proposals, which were four: to use the rich experience of the Diaspora, to admit that Armenia is not homogeneous and we should recognize ourselves as a diverse, not homogeneous nation, to make an effort to maintain the type of Armenian life permanently.
Then the guests made important speeches.
Manvel Sargsyan, Managing Director of the Armenian Center for National and Strategic Studies, made a report. In his speech, the latter touched upon the history of the criminal oligarchic system in Armenia, spoke about the necessity of the conditions of business and politics integration in the former system and the steps taken by the people: “Formation of the criminal oligarchic system was a necessity for the former authorities to keep the system in their hands. As a result, some areas were divided and shared between oligarchs. A criminal and oligarchic system has been formed in Armenia, and we are now facing the demolition process,” - said Manvel Sargsyan.
Trying to define what happened recently in Armenia, Manvel Sargsyan raised the following question: Is it a revolution or a social riot? “Armenia has never been able to establish some political institutions in the years of the Third Republic,” - said Manvel Sargsyan in his report, - failing the first elections, second most important institute - the judicial system was paralyzed in Armenia. As a result, the government’s appropriation took place, and all further steps were aimed at keeping the power.”
Speaking about another important issue in Armenia, the speaker touched upon the gaps that the institution has: “The problem of property ownership in Armenia is connected with the state levers. This fact has led to the fact that business and politics have converged,” - Manvel Sargsyan said, - illegal accumulation of property, except for taking over government leverage, cannot be otherwise protected. That’s why everyone wanted to have their role in the management system. As a result, the state failed.”
Referring to the ways of solving the problem, the speaker mentioned two important points: to regulate the political and economic field, as well as adopt a new law on property.
The next speaker was Ronald Grigor Syuni, a professor of history and political science at the University of Michigan. In his report, the latter touched upon the historical conditions of the First Republic and the omissions of the new and inexperienced state: “In a rather complicated political context surrounded by tragedies, the First Republic did not have a long life. For some people, the history of the First Republic is an occasion for pride, for some, an example of failure. But the fact is that we see the legacy of the First Republic both in the Soviet Armenia and in the history of the Third Republic.”
In the second part of the conference, the participants will discuss the issues in different halls, such as “Education and Science” and “Economic and Social Structure of Society”.