WASHINGTON, DC — The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a confirmation hearing on Wednesday for Biden Administrations nominee Kristina Kvien to serve as the next US Ambassador to Armenia.
President Biden nominated Kvien to the Armenian Ambassadorial position in July of this year. If confirmed, she will replace Ambassador Tracy, who is being considered for U.S. Ambassador to Russia.
During the panel, Chairman Menendez stated that Kristina Kvien has been nominated to be the U.S. Ambassador to Armenia during a challenging moment for the country.
“We’ve seen recent attacks from Azerbaijan, videos of what appear to be war crimes, as well as a longstanding humanitarian crisis brought on the war in Nagorno-Karabakh,” stated Chairman Menendez. He continued that he was “incredibly disappointed” by the State Department’s responses during the November 16 hearing, and speaking directly to Kvien, said that it is her “responsibility to make sure the American people do not look the other way when we uncover human rights violations and atrocities committed against Armenia.
“Armenia is connected to the U.S. by the love and concern of countless Armenian American families,” concluded Chairman Menendez in his opening remarks. “This is a diasporan community that is on the edge of hope and peace and the terror of ethnic cleansing.”
In her opening statement, the US Ambassador-designate to Armenia stated that peaceful settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict is essential to a more secure and prosperous future for Armenia and for the South Caucasus.
“The United States is working through bilateral and multilateral channels to help the sides achieve a peaceful, lasting, negotiated settlement of the conflict based on the principles of the UN Charter and the Helsinki Final Act. If confirmed, I will support the Administration’s commitment to achieving this goal,” she said.
“I grew up in Fresno, California, home to one of the largest Armenian Diaspora communities in the United States. My teachers and friends of Armenian heritage spoke of the Ottoman-era genocide that forced many of their families to seek new homes in America. As President Biden said on Armenian Remembrance Day this year, “let us redouble our efforts toward healing and building the better, more peaceful world that we wish for our children.” I confirmed, I will do everything in my power to remember the victims of the Armenian Genocide and support a peaceful future for Armenia,” the Ambassador-designate said.
“To this end I will do everything towards normalization discussions between Armenia and Turkey, which have made some steps forward,” she said.