Secy. Blinken signs memorandum on strategic civil nuclear cooperation with Armenian foreign minister

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Secretary of State Antony Blinken listens during a signing ceremony with Armenia's Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan at the State Dept, Monday, May 2, 2022, in Washington. Blinken and Mirzoyan signed a Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Strategic Civil Nuclear Cooperation. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool photo via AP)

Secretary of State Antony Blinken listens during a signing ceremony with Armenia’s Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan at the State Dept, Monday, May 2, 2022, in Washington. Blinken and Mirzoyan signed a Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Strategic Civil Nuclear Cooperation. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool photo via AP)

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UPDATED 11:05 AM PT – Tuesday, May 3, 2022

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan signed a memorandum of understanding on strategic civil nuclear cooperation.

Blinken welcomed Ararat Mirzoyan to the State Department Monday, where he said the memorandum opens new paths for cooperation and may strengthen bilateral ties. The two also spoke about improving defense ties and fighting corruption in Armenia among other issues.

Blinken noted, Armenia is going through “challenging times,” but said the nation has a true friend and partner in the US. He went on to praise the country’s government.

“I just want to take this opportunity as we’re sitting here to, in the first instance, praise the leadership of the prime minister and his government, the democratic reforms that they’ve been pursuing, the the progress that continues to be made,” he stated. “But also to very much welcome the dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan.”

Armenia’s foreign minister thanked Blinken for the nation’s support for Armenia’s nuclear energy sector and noted this year mark’s 30-years of diplomatic relations between the two nations.

Armenia's Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan and Secretary of State Antony Blinken hold up their documents during a signing ceremony at the State Dept, Monday, May 2, 2022, in Washington. Blinken and Mirzoyan signed a Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Strategic Civil Nuclear Cooperation. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool photo via AP)

Armenia’s Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan and Secretary of State Antony Blinken hold up their documents during a signing ceremony at the State Dept, Monday, May 2, 2022, in Washington. Blinken and Mirzoyan signed a Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Strategic Civil Nuclear Cooperation. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool photo via AP)

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