PRESS RELEASE
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May 2, 2006


RAFFI HOVANNISIAN IN BELGIUM FOR TRANSATLANTIC FORUM

Meets with Solana, Scheffer, Basescu, McCain, Bennett

Brussels -- Raffi K. Hovannisian, Armenia's first Minister of Foreign
Affairs, represented Armenia at an international policy conclave which
was convened here from April 28 to 30 under the auspices of the German
Marshall Fund of the United States, the Federal Government of Belgium,
and the Bertelsmann Stiftung of Germany.

Entitled "Transatlantic Challenges in a Global Era," the Brussels
Forum brought together world leaders, public figures, diplomats,
academicians, activists, and renowned journalists in order to reassess
the transatlantic agenda from American, European, and neighborhood
perspectives; to discuss the threats of terrorism and pandemics
across the globe of the 21st Century; to explore global competition
in the public and private sectors; to chart the course of democracy
and geopolitics in wider Europe, the Middle East, and China; and
to contemplate transatlantic energy security, national identities,
and international integration.

In his intervention, Raffi Hovannisian addressed the track record
of the transatlantic alliance and examined its contribution to
the transition from Cold War to European cooperation. He also
underscored the imperative correlation between collective security
and shared core values both within the alliance and for potential
partners on its periphery. In particular, he urged the stringent and
equal application to all national actors of the highest standards
of democracy, rule of law, human rights protection, and genocide
prevention and condemnation--irrespective of their place and role in
the international system.

Against the backdrop of contemporary democracy movements and
geopolitical developments, Raffi Hovannisian held informal meetings
with Dr. Javier Solana, Secretary General of the Council of the
European Union; NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer; Romanian
President Traian Basescu; and United States Senators John McCain and
Bob Bennett.

In the margins of the conference, Raffi Hovannisian also met with Crown
Prince Philippe of Belgium; Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt;
General James Jones, Supreme Allied Commander in Europe; Chairman
Elmar Brok of the European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs;
Belgian Foreign Minister and OSCE Chairman-in-Office Karel De Gucht;
Canadian Foreign Minister Peter MacKay; U.S. Senators George Voinovich
and John Edwards (former); Jordanian Senator Marwan al-Muasher; former
Spanish Foreign Minister Ana Palacio; DaimlerChrysler Chairman Dieter
Zetsche; and several others.

Hovannisian and his conference colleagues were received at the Royal
Palace by His Highness King Albert of Belgium.

Raffi Hovannisian, who is founder of the Armenian Center for National
and International Studies and the National Citizens' Initiative,
currently chairs the Heritage Party of Armenia.