JERUSALEM (A.W.)—Armenian Foreign Affairs Minister Edward Nalbandian met with Speaker of the Israeli Knesset (National Legislature) Yuli Edelstein on Monday, during Nalbandian’s official visit to Israel. At the meeting, the two exchanged views on a number of urgent regional issues, including the importance of the Israeli Parliament’s recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
During the talks, Edelstein noted that his point of view about the importance of recognition is “well-known” and that he has expressed it many times publically.
In July 2015, during a committee meeting, Edelstein had said the Knesset “must do the moral thing” and recognize the Armenian genocide.
“I visited one of the Armenian memorial sites and it is very hard to ignore what I saw there,” Edelstein had recounted at the time, according to the Jerusalem Post. “I expect that I and the Knesset behave appropriately so that we can make decisions according to the moral standards of a democratic state.”
Welcoming the Foreign Minister of Armenia on Monday, the Knesset leader emphasized that the Israeli Parliament is ready to extend full support to a “comprehensive development of relations” with Armenia.
According to the Armenian Foreign Affairs Ministry, Nalbandian and Edelstein also discussed a number of issues on the Armenian-Israeli relations agenda, particularly about deepening and expanding inter-parliamentary relations, and cooperation within international organizations.
Earlier on Nov. 6, Nalbandian visited the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem, where he met with Patriarch Archbishop Nourhan Manougian. Nalbandian briefed the patriarch on the objectives of his visit and the results of his meetings. During their meeting, the two also discussed issues of cooperation between the three custodian churches of the Holy Sepulchre Church.
The three primary guardians of the church, first appointed when Crusaders held Jerusalem, are the Greek Orthodox, the Armenian Apostolic, and the Roman Catholic churches. The Coptic Orthodox, Ethiopian Orthodox, and Syriac Orthodox churches also share jurisdiction. Over the years, there have been many disputes between the churches on issues of jurisdiction and cooperation.
According to the Armenian Foreign Ministry, the two also touched on “pan-Armenian” issues.