GLENDALE – Consul General of Armenia in Los Angeles Ambassador Armen Baibourtian visited the states of Washington and Oregon on May 15.
First Ambassador Baibourtian met with with Rev. Fr. Vazgen Boyajyan and Parish Council members of Holy Resurrection Armenian Church in Redmond, WA.
A. Baibourtian outlined the functions of the Consulate General of Armenia as well as current and future programs. He also noted the importance of establishing strong bonds of cooperation between the Armenian community of Seattle and the Homeland, along with the Armenian Consulate General in LA.
On the same day, Ambassador Baibourtian met with professionals from the Armenian community of Washington working in various spheres, but mostly in companies with headquarters in Seattle, such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Nordstrom, etc. During the meeting, A. Baibourtian presented the existing U.S.-Armenia cooperation in the fields of IT and high-tech and its prospects, as well as the avenues of providing support to the entrepreneurs wishing to invest in Armenia or develop economic cooperation. Various opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation were also discussed. A. Baibourtian also answered numerous questions from the audience present at the event.
On May 16, Ambassador Baibourtian visited the Armenian Saturday School adjacent to the Holy Resurrection Armenian Church in Seattle, where he got acquainted with the school’s activities and its future programs. After a tour of the facilities and a thorough conversation with the principal and the teaching staff, he offered the assistance and support of the Consulate General of Armenia in LA to the school, in particular, through providing school textbooks and literary materials from Armenia. On the same day, A. Baibourtian met with representatives of the Armenian community of Washington State at the Holy Resurrection Church. Rev. Fr. Vazgen Boyajyan and the visit’s coordinator in the community Razmig Keutelian introduced Ambassador Baibourtian as well as accompanying him Varazdat Pahlavuni, Counselor of the Consulate General of Armenia.
In his speech, A. Baibourtian presented the activities carried out by the Consulate General of Armenia in Los Angeles for the benefit of Armenia and the Armenian people. He touched upon the challenges and priorities of Armenia’s foreign policy, and noted the importance of the role of the Armenian community in Washington in the context of Armenia-Diaspora cooperation and the community’s bonds with the Consulate General and the Homeland. He answered numerous questions from the audience.
On May 17, Ambassador A. Baibourtian and Counselor Varazdat Pahlavuni held a series of meetings with representatives of the Armenian community of Seattle upon the latter’s request. During the meetings, issues were discussed related to charitable and economic input programs, both through the community and individually in Armenia. The Armenian community of Washington State consists of around 8-10 thousand people.
On May 18, Ambassador Armen Baibourtian met with Schuyler F. Hoss, Director of International Relations and Protocol of the Governor of State of Washington. During the meeting, the interlocutors discussed the possibilities and prospects of cooperation between Armenia and the State of Washington in sectors such as information and high technologies, environmental protection, the establishment of sister city relations between the cities of the Washington State and Armenia, etc. In the context of the California-Armenia cooperation, A. Baibourtian referred to the Framework Agreement on Cooperation between Armenia and the State of California as a successful model. An agreement was reached to develop a similar agreement with the State of Washington. The meeting was also attended by Counselor Varazdat Pahlavuni.
On May 19, Consul General Armen Baibourtian met with the Secretary of State of Oregon Shemia Fagan in Salem, the capital city of Oregon. She is the second highest-ranking official of the state executive branch in succession to the Governor of Oregon. Shemia Fagan noted that after assuming her present position in January 2021, this is her first meeting with the head of a foreign diplomatic mission. A. Baibourtian congratulated her and briefly introduced the Consulate General of Armenia in Los Angeles, as well as the cooperation programs with the State executive and legislative authorities. During the meeting, the interlocutors discussed the areas of cooperation between the State of Oregon and the Consulate General of Armenia, and exchanged views on the Armenian community of Oregon and the ways of its advancement. The meeting was attended by Deputy Secretary of State of Oregon Cheryl Myers and Counselor Varazdat Pahlavuni.
On May 19, Ambassador Baibourtian met with the Parish Council of St. Kevork Armenian Church of Oregon in Clackamas, OR chaired by Mher Sharyan. A. Baibourtian presented programs aimed at strengthening ties with the Homeland, in particular, concerning the youth. Concrete cooperation projects between the Consulate General of Armenia and the Armenian community of Oregon were discussed, and also the means for the involvement of the community in the programs organized by the Consulate General.
On May 20, the Consul General met with the representatives of the Armenian Community of Portland at St. Kevork Armenian Church of Portland. A. Baibourtian presented the activities of the Consulate General, and the relationship developed with the state executive and legislative bodies, regions and cities of the Western U.S. He underlined the importance of cooperation between the Armenian community structures and the Consulate General for the benefit of the Armenia-Diaspora agenda. The interlocutors also noted the role of the Armenian community of Oregon in expanding the cooperation with the state authorities. The representatives of the community expressed satisfaction with the strengthening of the ties of the Armenian community in Portland with the Homeland through the Consulate General. The Armenian community of Oregon consists of around 1,5-2 thousand people.