As the 98th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide approaches, you’re probably already aware of what events are scheduled for your local community to commemorate the 1.5 million Armenians lost. Each diasporan community does something different, but the intent is always the same: Remember our past, improve our future.
To that end, I want to alert you to an event that happens annually in Washington, D.C. Each year, Armenians descend on Capitol Hill for a program to not only remember the victims of the genocide, but to protest Turkey’s denial and the U.S. government’s complicity in that denial. The program is held with the participation of Armenian-American organizations, the Embassy of the Republic of Armenia, and the Office of the Nagorno Karabagh Republic.
The day—this year, Wed., April 24—culminates at 6 p.m. at Room 902 of the Hart Senate Office Building for a reception held by the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues.
The event brings Armenian-Americans together to reaffirm our commitment to a just resolution of this crime. Members of Congress also offer remarks at the remembrance.
In short, it’s an event Armenians from all over the country should attend. If you’re in the ANCA Eastern Region and can make it down for the day, I highly recommend it.
Our local community events for April 24 are priceless, there’s no doubt about it. But have you ever been on Capitol Hill? Have you ever been on the Hill to commemorate the genocide? Why not kill two birds with one stone?
Here’s the schedule for the busy day on Capitol Hill:
1:30-3:30 pm: “We Will Always Remember!” demonstration organized by the AYF-YOARF Washington “Ani” Chapter. At the Turkish Embassy, 2525 Mass. Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. Shuttle service from Soorp Khatch Church leaves at 1 pm.
4 pm: Wreath laying ceremony honoring victims of the genocide. Organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Armenia at the Armenian Embassy Khatchkar, 2225 R Street NW, Washington, D.C.
5 pm: Shuttle service from Armenian Embassy to Capitol Hill.
6-8 pm: Capitol Hill Armenian Genocide Observance sponsored by the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues and Armenian-American organizations at 902 Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill.
8:15 pm: Shuttle service from Capitol Hill to Soorp Khatch.
If you plan on attending and using the shuttle, you can register by April 21 by e-mailing email@example.com. If not, getting around Washington by car or train is convenient as well, although parking may be limited.
To encourage your representative to attend the event, take two minutes to send an e-mail: http://www.anca.org/action_alerts/action_disp.php?aaid=62550756.
To get more details of the events, go to the following Facebook pages: http://www.facebook.com/events/527055414011522/?fref=ts
I encourage all ANCA Eastern Region activists to make it to D.C. for this noteworthy event. What better way to commemorate the genocide than in the nation’s capital where we can affect real change to prevent future atrocities?
To the European Commission :
TURKEY İS GUİLTY OF THE GENOCİDE COMMİTED İN WEST ARMENIA.
In order to create a Turkish nation from above, Turkish nationalists waged a bloody campaign against non-Turkish and non-Muslim elements of the empire.
The First World War served as an excuse for the Young Turks, the then Turkish goverment, to exterminate Armenians. It was a deliberate and sustain war, in the course of which hundreds of thousands Armenians, Syrians and Greeks had been ruthlessly killed or forced into exile.
The collapse of the Ottomans had left a power vacuum, filled by another section of the Turkish nationalists, called Kemalists at a later time.
Mass extermination of the Ottoman times and also an extermination of an ethnically distinct and separate people from Turks.
What happened back then has been handed down to the later generations by their parents and grand-parents, who witnessed the onslaught, and of whom some are still alive.
Furthermore the sites of the mass graves all over West Armenia are well known and can easily be located if and when need be. The ruins of the country`s cultural heritage including churches belonged to the nations`s Christian section are still visible.
People wish to see the justice served. A search for justice has already began. A legal action against Turkey will at long last be taken at some time in the future.
We demand of the Turkish authorities firstly the recognition of our country, occupied west Armenia, which was autonomous under the Ottoman Empire and which lost its autonomy; secondly the recognition of the genocides or attempted genocides suffered by our people and which it witnessed in 1915.
We demand the immediate end of the policy designated under the name ‘Plan D’ which forces the population into an exodus or forced assimilation.
We demand demilitarisation and the banning of all the activities of military and paramilitary teams which have been exercising terror over the population since 1889.
The language of the occupied west Armenia, is still banned today. We demand self-determination in the matter of communication, education and social organisation. The Turkish state must recognise the specific beliefs and traditions of the occupied west Armenia people. The policy of Islamisation and Turkishisation (exemplified by the precept: ‘one mosque per village, one Imam per village’) must cease.
The military policy of the Turkish state has already destroyed a great part of our patrimony: setting fire to our forests, bombing our villages, systematic destruction of our historical monuments the sacred of our culture, and riches of humanity as well.
We bring to your attention this dramatic reality in the context of the discussion of entering into negotiations with Turkey.
May the threat to pour people end and may all the minorities of Anatolia live in peace.
We, the signatures below, demand justice and support the initiatives aiming to bring Turkey to justice.
Hakis Datvan, spokesman for the Collective Lake Van.
IMZA KAMPANYASINA KATILALIM