Businessman and philanthropist Ruben Vardanyan has renounced his Russian citizenship and announced that he is moving to Artsakh and launching the Artsakh Security and Development Front.
He calls on Armenians from all over the world to join the struggle for Artsakh, as he considers it to be “the root of Armenianism.”
In a statement released through his IDea Foundation, Vardanyan called on Armenians around the world to join the struggle of Artsakh.
“The existential Sardarapad moment has reached us, Armenians. We can’t feel it like we can’t feel radiation. But if we don’t stand shoulder to shoulder, we will lose what’s our backbone,” said Vardanyan.
In a video message, Vardanyan said he has renounced his Russian citizenship in order to come to Artsakh as an Armenian citizen “because it’s the right thing to do.”
In addition, Vardanyan appealed to Azerbaijan, urging them to stop “compressing the spring”: “We will not allow you to gradually force the Armenians out of here. It’s impossible,” he said.
Vardanyan expressed gratitude to the Russian peacekeepers in Artsakh. “I think that the mandate of the peacekeepers should be clarified, and the terms of their stay should be extended until we can ensure the security of the people of Artsakh on our own,” he added.
Vardanyan also drew the attention of the international community to the inadmissibility of ethnic cleansing.
Vardanyan and his family, together with a diverse group of partners around the world, have made more than $1.5 billion in commercial and philanthropic investments in key areas for human development – global education, healthcare, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), humanitarian issues, succession, and philanthropy.
The best-known projects are the investment company Troika Dialog, SKOLKOVO Business School, Phoenix Advisors and PhilinPhilgood in Russia, United World College Dilijan, the Foundation for Armenian Science and Technology (FAST), the Wings of Tatev cable car in Armenia, and the global Aurora Humanitarian Initiative.