Orthodox Christian communities are celebrating Christmas. Religious ceremonies were held on Sunday night, attended by members of the congregation, including political and civic leaders.
In Russia. president Vladimir Putin attended a divine service at the Transfiguration Cathedral in St. Petersburg.
In Tbilisi, Catholicos Patriarch of All Georgians, Ilya II led the congregation at divine service at the Holy Trinity Cathedral during which he delivered his Christmas Sermon which this year covered a number of social issues.
Christian Armenians all over the world also celebrated Christmas on Sunday.
photo: Russian president Vladimir Putin lighting a candle during a Christmas divine service in St Petersburg on 7 January 2019 (picture courtesy of kremlin.ru)
Most of the festivities were this year held outside Yerevan, in the city of Gyumri. The main event saw 13 citizens being awarded the title "Hero of our times".
Ahead of a scheduled meeting between the Foreign Ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan later this month, Ahmad Alili looks at the current state of the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process, and argues that public opinion now requires answers and clarifications