Armenia’s political circles’ response to the upcoming visit Charles, Prince of Wales, is to pay to Armenia is not greatly different from an official announcement by the British Embassy in Armenia.
Talking to Tert.am, Tevan Poghosyan, Executive Director of the International Center for Human Development (ICHD) and Heritage parliamentary group member, said that Price Charles’ upcoming visit to Armenia is an unprecedented event in the Armenian-British relations.
“We should realize that Great Britain has been – and will be – pursing its interests, which are largely in oil. I would say that this is a humanitarian rather than a get-to-know-you visit, and there is not a problem that would involve Great Britain’s interests.”
Prince Charles is the first member of the British royal family to pay a private visit to Armenia.
One of the major goals of Prince Charles’ visit to Armenia is the Yerevan My Love charity program similar to the Dumfries House program in Scotland, which is sponsored by Prince Charles.
Mr Poghosyan pointed out the fact that warm human relations play their role in interstate relations. In this context, he noted friendly ties between Prince Charles and Armenia’s ex-premier, ex-ambassador to Great Britain Armen Sargsyan.
This may have played a role in Prince Charles’ decision. Interestingly, Armen Sargsyan is the founder of the Yerevan My Love foundation.
Although Armenia, as well as Georgia, will never be of such a great historic importance for Great Britain as Azerbaijan is, Armenia may derive benefits.
“We must work hard for this visit not to remain a unique one. Rather, we must be able to stir up their interest for Armenian-British relations to be developed later, for this visit to be followed by many others, as well as by different agreements and investments. Armenia must be interesting to British society,” Poghosyan said.
He is doubly sure that the British media will widely cover Prince Charles’ visit to Armenia, which is the best opportunity for Armenia to disseminate information on itself in Great Britain.
Hmayak Hovhannisyan, Chairman of the Political Scientists Union of Armenia, considers Prince Charles’ visit to Armenia an exceptional event. The visit scheduled for May 28 to 30 is actually an attempt to draw parallels between “emotional” and “worldly and pragmatic” interests.
“Prince Charles is going to participate in an opening ceremony. Great Britain is not going to restrict its regional interests with British Petrolium’s presence in Azerbaijan. Rather, it seeks to add natural resource development in Armenia,” he said.
He means possible development of the Amulsari gold field, which issue Armenia’s press has for years addressed.
Prince Charles is scheduled to visit the institute of Ancient Manuscripts (Matenadaran), Holy See of Echmiadzin and attend a gala performance at the Yerevan Opera in the honor of the donators to the Yerevan My Love program.
Prince Charles is to hold a meeting with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan.