Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan visited the National Security Service and participated in the ceremonial session dedicated to the Day of the National Security Service Employees.
The Prime Minister made a speech, in which he particularly said”
"Dear Director of the National Security Service,
Dear Deputy Directors,
Dear Generals and officers,
I congratulate all of us on the occasion of the Day of the National Security Service Employees and I must say at once that I highly appreciate the dedicated work of the National Security Service.
The National Security Service is the body the scope of work, efficiency and dedication of which is not visible to everyone, and the information is not available to everyone, and this is one of the service's features. And I emphasize this because when I say that I appreciate the dedicated work of the National Security Service, I say it as a person who is aware of all the details and the full extent of the functions and activities that the National Security Service carries out, led by its Director.
I must emphasize that my perception has always been like this, and I still think so today, that the National Security Service is one of the most important pillars of our state, a body, a system of state administration, which perhaps by nature is obliged to be the most state-oriented, and, on the other hand, a body that possesses complete information about all the problems and issues existing in the country and around it. In this regard, I must emphasize that upon assuming the position of the Prime Minister, I considered it very important that the National Security Service should be the most important pillar of the sovereignty, independence, and security of the Republic of Armenia, because it is provided for by our legislation and Constitution, and this is also what the logic says. And I must also admit that, due to these circumstances, the National Security Service has perhaps been working more intensively than usual in recent years, because we have reserved many functions to the Service that are not very specific to the functions of the National Security Service, keeping in mind the fact that sometimes we can rely on the Service in solving the most important problems.
In this regard, the work done during this period is doubly appreciated. But, on the other hand, we must also record that unless all the challenges to our country's security are not addressed, it means that we cannot consider our work, starting with me and continuing with the rest, to be sufficiently effective. Because indeed we are facing unusual challenges, and my perception is that we should increase the effectiveness of the National Security Service in terms of resisting external and all security challenges.
But, on the other hand, during this period we also achieved unprecedented results, which are not so joyful results. In particular, the achievements in the field of counter-intelligence, which, unfortunately, we can consider “achievements”. They are extremely important for several reasons: firstly, we seem to carry out this function effectively, and secondly, it acts as a cold shower for all of us, because these impulses tell us that we should not weaken our vigilance, because in everyday conditions who could think that an officer of the Armed Forces of Armenia can, for example, carry out espionage activities for the benefit of foreign countries and, in particular, against the background of known circumstances, for the benefit of Azerbaijan. But we see that these realities exist, and we must draw very specific conclusions from them.
One of the conclusions should be that we should become more efficient, because we see that in the conditions of the development of new technologies, the existing challenges facing Armenia, our state and security are getting worse. In other words, new technologies open up new opportunities for our adversaries, those engaged in hostile activities against our country, and in this regard, of course, we must draw certain conclusions.
For example, the conclusion of the Government and myself in this context is that we should help the National Security Service to focus more and more on 3 main functions: the first is counter-intelligence, the second is the fight against terrorism, and the third is the function of maintaining constitutional order. And in this regard, we must do everything to strengthen the capabilities of the National Security Service.
Of course, the function performed by the Border Guard Service is also very important in this context. There are really very important functions, and in fact, recently we have also been formulating new tasks for the National Security Service. Those tasks are aimed at strengthening the capabilities of the National Security Service in performing the functions I mentioned more effectively.
But that's not all. Understanding the important function that the National Security Service performs for the state, we consider it very important to create a system of proper social guarantees for service workers. And in this regard, I must record that, yes, the certification process has a very important and noteworthy goal. We say the goal of this program is to at least double the salaries of National Security Service officers. We will, of course, definitely implement this program, not only in the National Security Service, but also in the Armed Forces, the Police, in general, in all bodies related to the military service, in the State Protection Service.
It is very important to emphasize that this is the first part of the question. The second part is as follows. why are we doing this at all, what is our goal? We want the employees of the National Security Service to have the opportunity to deal with various daily problems as little as possible - it is understandable that there are various problems arising from family social security - and to focus as much as possible on professional activities. Moreover, when we talk about at least doubling the salary, this is not all. We mean that firstly, this system should work regularly, and secondly, a system of social guarantees for family members should be introduced, in particular, it refers to health insurance and so on.
But, on the other hand, I want to talk about the continuation. being grateful for the unequivocally done work, during this process, of course, the demands and expectations of the Republic of Armenia from the officers of the National Security Service will increase. It will be added with the following logic that, as I already mentioned, unfortunately, the security challenges that threaten us are getting worse, and we cannot address these challenges without creating incentives for the development of the service and the personal and professional qualities of each employee. By the way, I want no derogatory tone to be observed in this statement, because, as I already said, the world is changing very quickly, the challenges are changing very quickly, the terrorist, espionage networks and the networks that threaten the security of other states are changing very quickly, and they have no complexes to learn, to apply new technologies, to adopt new methods. And therefore, even more, the body aimed at resisting those challenges will not have any complex in this regard, and yes, all of us, starting with me, ending with all the employees of the state, and not only the state system, should not consider it a shame to seek any new knowledge, the adoption of new technologies, new skills, new methods, new thinking, with the main focus being on ensuring the sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence and security of the Republic of Armenia.
In this regard, the functions and role of the National Security Service will increase even more. And it is in the context of this increased role that we believe that the functions of the service should be somewhat offloaded. In particular, you know that the State Protection Service is turning into a body subordinate to the Prime Minister. Today, the National Security Service plays a very important role in the fight against corruption, but we hope that the Anti-Corruption Committee, as an institution, will be accomplished enough to free the National Security Service from this function, so that the National Security Service does not spend energy on this. Also, you know that the Foreign Intelligence Service is being created, but our understanding is that at this stage, at least for the foreseeable future, we will not intervene in the activities of the National Security Service's Intelligence Department in any way, and the Department will continue its normal operation at least until the time that we have no doubts that the Foreign Intelligence Service has developed to the point where it can perform these functions. But on the other hand, I reiterate, we need to focus on the 3 main functions that provide security, 3+1, including border security and other issues that have emerged, are emerging now, or we are just noticing the need to address these issues. In particular, today's challenges are in a hybrid form, and the National Security Service must assume these new functions in this new situation in order to face the hybrid challenges threatening the Republic of Armenia. It's a topic that I think we will discuss in a variety of formats with the services and staff that will be directly involved in this function.
I want to congratulate all of us again. Thank you again for your dedicated service and I wish that every year, when we summarize the work of the National Security Service of the previous year, we report that the challenges have decreased or are decreasing, and the efficiency is increasing. Of course, this is a matter that, unfortunately, depends not only on us, but it is not so good that it does not depend on us to a large extent. We should try to develop the processes in such a way that the controlling package of issues related to the fate of our country should ultimately appear in our hands, and this is one of the main functions of the National Security Service.
I congratulate and thank you all, thank you, Mr. Abazyan, for the work done."
On the occasion of the Day of the National Security Service Employee, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan presented state awards to a group of employees of the National Security Service for their bravery and dedication in performing their official duties.