By Jen McAndrew
U.S. Embassy Yerevan welcomed a U.S. congressional delegation led by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi to Armenia, Sept. 17-19. Speaker Pelosi is the highest-ranking U.S. official ever to visit the country. The speaker was joined by Chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Rep. Frank Pallone, and Reps. Anna Eshoo, and Jackie Speier.
During the visit, the U.S. delegation underscored the strong partnership between the United States and Armenia, rooted in shared democratic values and long-standing ties. In meetings with Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, Speaker of the National Assembly Alen Simonyan, Minister of Defense Suren Papikyan, and members of the opposition, the delegation discussed the security situation in the region, and conveyed a strong message of support for Armenia’s democracy and security.
In a wreath-laying ceremony at the Armenian Genocide Memorial, the delegation paid their respects to the victims of the Armenian genocide, and Pelosi accepted the Genocide Museum-Institute’s Ambassador Henry Morgenthau Medal on behalf of the U.S. Congress for its work to raise awareness of the genocide. She reiterated her commitment “to ensuring that the truth of the genocide is never erased.” In 2021, President Joe Biden became the first U.S. president to recognize the Armenian genocide.
The delegation also addressed the media in a joint press conference with the speaker of the National Assembly, where Pelosi called for advancing security, economic development, and democratic institutions in Armenia and the Caucasus region, Sept. 18. The conference was widely reported by international media.
Throughout the visit, large crowds lined the streets of Yerevan to welcome the delegation. In remarks at the Cafesjian Center for the Arts, followed by a roundtable discussion with security experts, Pelosi honored Armenia’s rich cultural heritage and underscored U.S. support for the people of Armenia. “In the ongoing battle against autocracy around the world, we will always support democracy and freedom,” she said.
Pelosi’s office also released a video of her historic visit.
The delegation returned to Washington ready to advance the United States’ longstanding commitment to a democratic Armenia and a secure, peaceful Caucasus region.
Jen McAndrew is the public affairs officer at Embassy Yerevan.