March 24
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During his working visit to the Russian Federation, Armenia’s High Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs Zareh Sinanyan had a meeting with representatives of the Armenian community of Obninsk, as reported the Office of the High Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs.

The meeting was hosted by Arax Armenian Educational and Cultural Center. The Center’s director Hovik Hovakimyan presented the activities of the Center, as well as the daily activities and current problems of the local Armenian school, after which the members of the community addressed Zareh Sinanyan with their questions and said they were particularly discontent with the program for delivery of textbooks to Armenian schools abroad, the content of those textbooks and the complexity of the materials. They also said the community hadn’t been able to participate in the Pan-Armenain Games since the information hadn’t been sent on time, and Zareh Sinanyan noted that all information about programs, projects and meetings concerning Diaspora Armenians would be provided to Armenian communities and disseminated by the Office in advance.

There were also questions regarding repatriation, and Zareh Sinanyan emphasized that the Armenian government must represent the interests of all Armenians around the world. “Full involvement of Diaspora Armenians in life in Armenia is truly in the interests of the Republic of Armenia,” he noted.

Afterwards, the High Commissioner had a meeting with the city’s leadership, namely deputy mayors Karina Bashkatova and Tatiana Popova, who attached special importance to the active involvement of the Armenian community in city life and discussed possible directions for cooperation.

At the end of the day, Zareh Sinanyan also met with members of Repat Armenia Foundation’s Advisory Board. The meeting was hosted by Executive Director of Repat Armenia Foundation Vardan Marashlyan and attended by Armenia’s Ambassador to Russia Vardan Toghonyan. The issues were mainly related to the role and status of the Office of the High Commissioner for Diaspora Affairs, the problems with Armenian education abroad, repatriation and future cooperation.

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