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Armenian FM Dismisses Calls for His Resignation

Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian

Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian

YEREVAN -- Armenia's foreign minister has brushed aside heavy criticism from hard-line political groups calling for his resignation, RFE/RL's Armenian Service reports.

Edward Nalbandian, speaking at a press conference with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt on July 20, dismissed his critics and accused them of making "pointless noise" and "speculating" over matters of national importance.

Both the Armenian Revolutionary Federation and the Ramkavar-Azatakan Party have released statements in recent days alleging the government policy in the Nagorno-Karabakh settlement process and Yerevan's attempts to improve relations with Turkey have both failed.

Ramkavar-Azatakan said that Nalbandian has been performing in an "untalented way."

Nalbandian has called such accusations "baseless."

Meanwhile, Bildt -- who led a European Union delegation to Yerevan on a tour of the South Caucasus states -- reiterated EU support for the peace process between Armenia and Azerbaijan and welcomed continued dialogue between Yerevan and Ankara.

The Armenian and Azerbaijani presidents met in Moscow on July 17 to renew their talks on Karabakh, though no agreements were reached.