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Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin urges Raffi Hovhannisian to stop hunger strike


YEREVAN, MARCH 15, ARMENPRESS. The Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin issued a statement regarding the post- election developments in Armenia. The statement the Information System of the Mother See conveyed to "Armenpress" runs as follows:

"Following the post-election developments and comments made during it we want to state the following. We highly appreciate the soberness of our people which has become the guarantee of peaceful and civilized conduction of elections. Taking into consideration the reports and assessments of the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Armenia and observation missions, and other information, the Mother See Holy Ejmiatsin has clearly expressed its position over the election results and the attempt to make the Church, the Catholicos and even the Gospel, used during president's inauguration ceremony, as subjects of political speculations is inadmissible."

The Holy See also urged the people to pray and be guided by brotherly love and solidarity spirit during the Period of the Great Lent, restraining from manifestations of intolerance and hatred.

The Holy See also called on Raffi Hovannisian to stop the hunger strike and choose a more constructive way of political struggle. The church does not justify hunger-strike as it is a life-threatening action.

ARMENPRESS

Addressing people in one of his rallies in Freedom square, on March 10, Armenia’s opposition Heritage Party leader, former FM Raffi Hovannisian—who is declared runner-up to the winner, incumbent President Serzh Sargsyan, as a result of the presidential election that was conducted on February 18, but who claims to be the real winner in the vote and who declared a hunger strike on March 10 at capital city Yerevan’s Liberty Square— said, "If on April 9, Serzh Sargsyan takes a fake oath on the Bible, and if the Catholicos desecrates the Bible, they will do it over my dead body!"

Statement from the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin

The Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin has issued a statement on the current political situation following the presidential elections in Armenia.

"We greatly appreciate our people's good sense, which guaranteed the conduct of a peaceful and civilized election. Taking into consideration the reports and assessments of the February 18 presidential election by the Central Election Commission and foreign observation missions, the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin has clearly expressed its stance on the election results. We consider all attempts at politicizing the Holy Church, the Armenian Catholicos, and the Gospel of the Virgin Mary (that is used during the swearing-in ceremony of Armenia's President) to be unacceptable.

In this period of Great Lent, we invite our nation's children to pray. We exhort them to be guided by the spirit of brotherly love and solidarity and keep themselves away from actions of intolerance and hatred.

We also urge Raffi Hovannisian to end his hunger strike in Freedom Square, and to choose a more constructive means for political struggle. The Church does not condone a hunger strike because it threatens to harm life which is granted only by God.

Information Service of the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin 15 March, 2013:

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