Katalin Novák received Armenia’s Head of State
The aim is to strengthen and give substance to the relations between Hungary and Armenia, said President of Hungary Katalin Novák on Tuesday, after she held talks with Vahagn Khachaturyan, President of the Republic of Armenia, in Budapest.
The President pointed out that this is President Khachaturyan's first official visit to Hungary. Katalin Novák added that the meeting focused on the cause of peace in the world, Hungarian humanitarian aid to Armenia, demographic problems, the importance of bilateral relations, the situation of minorities and Armenia's European perspective.
President Novák recalled that diplomatic relations between Armenia and Hungary were resumed at the end of 2022, and that this is the second time since the regime change that a President of Armenia has visited Hungary.
At the event, an agreement was reached on cultural cooperation between Armenia and Hungary, signed by Balázs Hankó, Hungary’s State Secretary for Higher Education. The two countries aim to strengthen their bilateral relations in areas including higher education, science, technology and culture.
On the war between Russia and Ukraine and in the Middle East, the President emphasized that the ultimate goal is to achieve peace, a ceasefire and peace talks, and then long-term peace must be secured.
President Novák spoke about the Hungary Helps Programme, under which Hungary has supported Armenian families with HUF 40 million, including medical treatment. About 1000 displaced children will have the opportunity to attend holiday camps in Hungary.
Katalin Novák said: the Armenian community in Hungary, which has received HUF 2 billion in funding between 2011 and 2023, is an important link between the two nations. Hungary’s Armenian minority is growing and getting stronger, they are free to exercise their rights, and their numbers have increased by 18% compared to 2011.
President Novák also pointed out that positive trends can be seen in trade relations as well, with the trade turnover having increased elevenfold in 20 years, to 29 million USD. Hungary also offered 30 scholarships to young Armenians under the Stipendium Hungaricum Programme, which will also contribute to strengthening bilateral relations.
Referring to the common Christian ties between the two countries, the President said that Hungary Helps will continue to stand by members of persecuted Christian communities.
The Head of State stressed that Armenia can count on Hungary's support in strengthening its European relations and in visa liberalisation when Hungary takes over the presidency of the Council of the European Union.