22 April 2003, 13:26

Kocharyan, Robert Sedrakovich

President of the Republic of Armenia.

Born August 31, 1954. Graduated from high school in Stepanakert, the capital of Nagorno-Karabakh. Started professional activities in 1971 at Stepanakert Electrotechnical Plant as assembly metalworker. Served in the Soviet Army from 1972 to 1974. In 1982, graduate with honors from the Electrotechnical Department of Yerevan Polytechnic Institute. Upon graduation, worked as mechanical engineer in Stepanakert Electrotechnical Plant. Since 1980, occupied various positions in Komsomol and Communist Party bodies of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Starting February 1988, was one of the political leaders of Karabakh movement. Was a member of Krunk Committee; after its dissolution, created and headed Miatsum organization.

In 1989 and 1990 was elected the deputy of Armenia's Supreme Council and member of Supreme Council's Presidium. In 1991, was elected the deputy of The Supreme Council of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic of the first convocation.

In August 1992, at the height of Karabakh War, R. Kocharyan was entrusted positions of Chairman of the State Defense Committee of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic and Prime Minister of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic with extraordinary powers. Mobilization of all powers and unswerving will to free Artsakh allowed to bring a breakthrough to the military action.

R. Kocharyan's appeal The Nation Tested by a War Must Withstand the Test by Peace was realized in the course of reinstating Nagorno-Karabakh Republic's economy, providing constant communication channels with Armenia, and forming a social protection system for the people who went thru a war. Robert Kocharyan's political will, industriousness, and goal-oriented mind have become a real guarantee for peaceful and safe life of Karabakh's people.

On December 24, 1994, Robert Kocharyan was elected the President of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic by the decision of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic's Supreme Council and re-elected at the general election in November 1996. In this position, following the people's anticipations and people's safety principles, did everything possible for the fair solution of Karabakh problem.

Thanks to R. Kocharyan's efforts, Nagorno-Karabakh Republic started participating in OSCE's peacekeeping process as an independent side of the conflict. He was the first representative of Nagorno-Karabakh Republic at the international negotiations.

Gradually, R. Kocharyan became one of the most influential figures of Armenian political life.

Since March 1997, R. Kocharyan was the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia. In this position, he initiated wide-scale activities on enhancing the socioeconomic policy of the government. Being extremely busy with the issues of the Republic's socioeconomic development, Robert Kocharyan managed to establish constructive relations with political parties and movements of Armenia.

On March 30, 1998, Robert Kocharyan was elected the President of the Republic of Armenia.

Fluent in Russian and English.

Married, three children.

Robert Kocharyan's wife, Bella Levonovna Kocharyan, graduated form Sanitation and Hygiene Department of Yerevan Medical Institute in 1978. Worked at the Regional Sanitation and Epidemic Station (SES) as bacteriologist, then as epidemiologist. Occupied the position of deputy chief medical officer of the Regional SES. In the last years of employment (1991-1993), was the head of Epidemiology Department of the SES. Currently, Mrs. Kocharyan is actively involved in public work. She is the honorable chairperson of pan-Armenian register of marrow transplantation donors and the honorable chairperson of the Armenian Branch of Vladimir Spivakov's International Charity Foundation Gifted Children of Armenia.

In his free time, Robert Kocharyan likes to do sports, in particular basketball, swimming, and other water sports; he also finds some time for hunting. Among music styles, he prefers jazz.

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