Internalizing Western Armenia

Nineteen-fifteen was the date that separated a significant part of the Armenian Nation from not only its homeland, but from the historical reality as well. Western Armenia was marginalized from the collective concerns and reality of the Armenians living in the diaspora, as if the genocide had eradicated it from the hearts of its inhabitants. The severity of this marginalization is evidenced by the fact that no serious and sustained contact has been made with it since 1915, which has led us to the alienation of Western Armenia and consequently to its “taboo”-ization.

Armenian monastery on the Island of Gdouts, Lake Van (Photo by Khatchig Mouradian)
Armenian monastery on the Island of Gdouts, Lake Van (Photo by Khatchig Mouradian)

The term alienation implies estrangement. This best describes the current relationship, if there is one, between “Western Armenia” as an entity and the Armenians of the diaspora. The focus of this article is on diasporans, as those living in the Republic of Armenia underwent a very different post-genocide process as part of the Soviet Union. The symptoms of alienation are multiple; yet, here, I will focus on the most important ones.

The most conspicuous sign of alienation is a lack of interest. Presently, I do not believe a large number of Armenians are really interested in exploring this alienated entity called “Western Armenia,” as if the present-day borders between Turkey and Armenia not only separated the two republics, but were also the virtual demarcation line between reality (the actual Republic of Armenia) and the lost part of the homeland. We please and satisfy ourselves by empty slogans such as, “We want the Sevres Treaty” or “We demand our lands back.” Yet, when it comes to practical matters, we are unaware of the lands we are demanding, and even of the actual borders the Sevres Treaty outlined. In short, we demand what we are ignorant of.

Our present struggle resembles a doctor who prescribes a treatment to a patient, without actually seeing or examining him. How can we demand something, without actually knowing it? This is the ultimate form of alienation. Therefore, the notion of a “Western Armenia” is a vague and abstract concept in our minds, as long as we remain ignorant of its various components—churches, monasteries, villages, and people. All of this does not imply that we should know each and every church or village that is there by heart, but we must begin to dispel the abstraction. A related symptom of this alienation is seen through our unwillingness to investigate, explore, and examine this “Western Armenia.” The majority of the Armenians today do not show the least amount of preparedness to spend some time and effort in this regard. Fortunately, however, a small group of Armenian scholars, journalists, historians, and photographers has emerged, and is working relentlessly in an attempt to bring to light the “dark sides” of Western Armenia. For those who have taken this national burden upon their shoulders, we salute you.

This brings us to the second phenomenon, which is actually more detrimental to the social consciousness and collective thinking of diasporans. It is the “taboo”ization “Western Armenia.” I’m not referring to those Armenians who are generally inactive or indifferent towards diasporan community life, the activities of political parties, cultural associations, or the national psyche in general, but those who despite their involvement in community/political/cultural life, have adopted a dangerous attitude with regard to this whole issue of “Western Armenia.” This is exactly where the “taboo”-ization comes in: Due to alienation, we have reached a point where our fellow Armenians refuse to take part in any expedition, activity, or investigation of “Western Armenia.” We hear the following arguments as justification for this position: “We don’t want to step foot on Turkish soil,” or even worse, “We will go to Western Armenia once it’s emancipated.” Is it just me, or does there seem to be a clear fallacy in the structure of their logic? I cannot come to grips with these statements, since I do not understand who they are referring to: Who will this emancipator be, when no one is working towards that direction? Are we also waiting for the Messiah who will liberate our lands? The failure to internalize “Western Armenia” led to its alienation and, subsequently, to its rejection from our reality.

I believe there is another problem interwoven in this issue of “Western Armenia”: Are we ready to accept the “hidden Armenians” as “real” Armenians and integrate them in our consciousness? We have problems accepting each other in the diaspora, let alone “hidden Armenians” who are Muslim and speak only Turkish or Kurdish.

The “taboo”-ization—and hence, the rejection—of “Western Armenia” as the essential axis of our struggle will undermine the whole raison d’être of our political organizations. Let us not forget that in the 19th century, the spirit of struggle emerged in response to the situation in “Erkir.” If we are truly the children of those organizations, I suggest we start putting “Western Armenia” in the forefront. Unless we truly internalize it, and make it a part of our daily concerns, our struggle will remain an empty barrel that looks solid from the outside, yet sounds the echoes of emptiness upon thumping.


Varak Ketsemanian

Varak Ketsemanian is a graduate of the American University of Beirut (AUB) and the University of Chicago’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies (2014-2016). His master’s thesis titled “Communities in Conflict: the Hunchakian Revolutionary Party 1890-1894” examines the socio-economic role of violence in shaping inter-communal and ethnic relations by doing a local history of the Armenian Revolutionary Movement in the Ottoman Empire. Ketsemanian’s work tackles problems such as the development and polarization of mainstream historiographies, inter-communal stratifications, nationalism, and the relationship of the Ottoman State with some of its Anatolian provinces. He is currently completing a PhD at Princeton University, where his doctoral dissertation will focus on the social history of the National Constitution of Ottoman Armenians in 1863, and the communal dynamics/mechanisms that it created on imperial, communal, and provincial levels. Ketsemanian’s research relates to the development of different forms of nationalism in the 19th and 20th centuries, revolutionary violence, and constitutional movements.


  1. Thank you for the truth. I went last year and prior to going I was told by many not to go, that I would be supporting the Turks. It was the best experience of my life. I was able to see, touch, hear and sense what my family experienced for generations. I saw the lands, the churches and sights we all have heard of from our families. It’s a shame that there is such an attitude about our homeland. It’s our land and it must be every Armenians goal to go there once in their lives.

  2. Thank you Varak for bringing out this tendency of “taboo”ing which we have noticed in some individuals. It may be promoted by some political party leaders. Keep up the good work and we look forward to your follow up articles.

  3. Varak, many of us are very aware of Western Armenia, what is in it, what was in it, where it is, where the bounadries are, who lives there now, and how many of them there are. We also know the cities and villages where our parents and grandparents came from, and a lot more. I think you underestimate many of us.
    We don’t necessarily have to jump on a plane and go there. Some of us go, and some don’t.

  4. Good article. I consider myself part of the group of those who place Western Armenia in the taboo category. It’s good to hear this being challenged.
    I am glad to see the subject being talked about here; hopefully this will wake some of us up to the realities out there.
    We must remember how Israel came to be from nothing. We, with Armenia right next door and with so many hidden Armenians living on the land already, also have a chance to make history.

  5. Daer Mr. Katsemanian; since 1999 I visited Armenia almost every year, I even created a non commercial web site promoting Armenias beauty and tourism, encouraging people to visit Armenia. (please see I finally visited Western Armenia last year and Yes You are right every Armenian should go there and see with their own eyes what we are to Hamshens if they are Armenians then I think we should accept them with open arms as they are the ones who know and can keep these lands for us…You and I will not be able to keep these lands if they are ever taken/given to us…Thank you for this enlighting article.

  6. ” Are we also waiting for the Messiah who will liberate our lands?”
    No, this is what Armenians “have to wait for”
    “… unforeseen developments to occur in and around Turkey—such as civil war, global or regional conflict, revolution, Kurdish insurrection, natural disaster, or nuclear catastrophe…’
    Mr. Sassounian advises sitting in a corner and waiting for Turkey to implode. I suppose there’s always that chance..

  7. I have been there too.Long ago,around 1960’s.Drove through from Istanbulla*staying there 2/3 days.Went to a store that the name more or less implied the owners were Armenians.When with wife tried to strike up conversation with the couple*owners,they were very scared that some others might here them converse with us in Armenian-when no one around ,yes they spoke in Armenian..
    Then drove with own car-with French License plates-via Ankara,going through small townships children thre stones on this Giavour car…when heavy snow also started,decided time to place car on train in next town upto Erzeroum, my father’s birthplace and hometown.Slept there overnight,prior to that in Sivas.Poor desoltae areas,very poor.Not the present day Turkey that is more or less thriving with foreign investments and industries…
    Early in the morning ,boy came around knocking on door and informed us that the Kaymaykam wished to see us.I got a bit disturbed*not scared.Hell I thought if they would dig up and find out my ancestors lived there and stop us there before reaching Iran-where we lived then-but we went down and were admitted to a huge hall where there were some dozen or more people sitting in chairs placed ina round fashion.The Kaymakam offered me cigarettes and and then gifted us with a map.He asked if I spoke turkish,replied yes the Iranian Azeri turkish .Evet evet, speak wwe understand you .To cut it short he said if we would mind to have a Minmbashi accompany us to the frontier.I accepted it.When we said good bye and took our luggage to car in fron of hotel the Minbashi was alread sitting at back of car.We also admitted a Persian student ,coming from U.S. to Iran ,to come along .Car on steepy road was slipping and going downward the hill.I shouted to the student and the Minbashi to leave car,stopped car somehow.Then w/help of the student put chains on all ties8i had purchased in Paris.The Minbashi , got off just before frontier saying that he had previously phoned the frontier Customs officials to let us through .We did so without being checked for goods ,personal belongings.i thanked him. In short the reason I brought this up was , it was one thing to stop .go through a country that was occupied by THEM,all the while thinking that those ladns were populated with armenians now desolate and in poor condition,another to NOW admit to it havi8ng progressed ,like all other countries.But at the back of my mind ,from what I had learnt from parents and history teacher in armenian school and books, it was tough not to think grudge/revenge etc.,for how can one swallow the past that easily…
    The pain that my elder uncle along with my grandfather-according to my father were put on deat march ..and perished.Father escaped it as he was an apprentice in a Jewish store in Istanbulla earning money to also send back home etc.
    Now then Mr. ketsemanian,hundreds of thousanmds of our forefathers ancestors went through hell on those lands-that now areoccupied mainly by kurds,which was promissed to them and given to them by ottoman turkey and Kemalists young turks alike.Those lands belonged to us the heirs in the hands of aliens….granted some Kurds did live alongside us but seperately in their villages etc., and turks too. No I would not set foot back there again i though until quite recently,when I saw and rad the Turks are softening up -their style,VOJ by and by.Churhcess being opend etc., we klnow the rest. Because they know at the back of their minds that they have to accept what THEIR FOREFATHERS did to ours and it is a matter of time that the Wrold will acceed to Armenians the right to DEMAND in related instances.Whether great Turkey accept or not Kurds are by and by rising too.They are not any more “mountain turks” and soon will see other citites such as Diarbakira*Tigranakert,admit that old churches be repaired and mayors like the latter’s INVITE ARMENIANS COME TO YOUR HOMES!!!!
    But I insist we shall GO WHEN THE ENPRMOUS CRIME HAS BEEN OFFICIALLY ADMITTED BY BOTH TRUKS AND KURDS AND THEN COMPENSATIONS PAID.AND I MEAN PAID IN CASH,like the Jews received fromn Germany .But I also know what Turks unlike the Germans will not so easilyu pay up.
    Thence my idea is through the Oil Transporting compnaies that pay transit du
    ties of 1.6 billion per annum to Turkey ,split that in two. half to Armenians.For they also whether by error or fear,did I say FEAR? from Armenians who fought alongside them in two WWs…
    no they should be made to pay by their respective Govt., who as also -soon to admit-that Genoicde took place and are complying with our request to do so.Otherwise to imagine think and desire that land be given back to us or monies paid to us by great Turkey is an illusion to say the least. Turkey must be made to kneel down and ask for forgiveness.Another matter they will say our coffers are empty-which is noit surprising, they always will be…
    Thence to visit lands there PAZHALSTA(Russian) please!!! go but have in mind you are going to be made to think there that those ladns churches ruins etc., are our inheritance from our ancestors.Meanwhile, hopefully some powers to be will make up their minds to puncish the culprit!!! not to rely on them .They canno anhymore enter Egypt or Syria.I bet you for any amount.Those days have gone by…they must stay put and think of making amends to the Ermeni Rayas…the Assyrians ,Greeks etc.,for how much longer does it take to have these powers understand that the Turks are of no USE to them…to curb Russian influence in the area??? that is baloony,Russians of today are different ,they know Turkey is paper tiger like my persian frinds says and will not dare take up arms against a power like Russia.rather will kiss and make up with them and do more business with Russians than the Agnlo Ams…
    So is the Toikish mindset,flexible manuevrable and changeant…
    If I have crossed the margin,please excuse my.After all this is a free country and free speach and writs are allowed.
    Best hasgcoghin

    • “I MEAN PAID IN CASH,like the Jews received fromn Germany ”
      So, you think the return of lands is unlikely/unrealistic?

  8. First, yes, a very well written article. But the content … well, it is such unrealistic dreams of Western Armenia that have caused you to lose the Eastern Armenia that you do have. You have sold it to Russia, who has absolute control over you now, and can dictate you to do nearly anything they want to. As your defense minister of Eastern Armenia said, you have to be stuck with Russia not because of Azerbaijan (“which you can take care of alone”), but because of Turkey. Of course! Keep dreaming about it, and making Turkey take notice, and you have no choice but hide behind Russia. A classic definition of pyrrhic victory (over Azerbaijan). By the way, while you were busy selling Eastern Armenia in exchange for cheap gas, Azerbaijan just signed a $100 BILLION deal selling gas to Europe. You can keep Karabak. Farmland. But you have lost the Armenia you HAD. Independent Azerbaijan lives on.

    And it is funny hearing these dreams from Diaspora. Of course! You are not there in Yerevan to pay the expensive gas Russia threatened to charge you or late you face Turkey alone. It is sweet dreams only when had from safely afar. And I am so very surprised at how silent the Armenians in Armenia are vis-à-vis Diaspora. Yes, you help them, but sometimes you hurt them too. It is a classic Phd paper topic waiting to be written by someone smart: “How Diaspora can hurt the homeland.” Another classic example, Cuban Americans. But I digress.

    • Karim,

      It looks like my fellow Armenians finally got to you. They broke through your facade by punching a hole in your hollow shell and exposed your real self. I could tell from day one that your mild-mannerism and reconciliatory attitude was nothing but a farce. All in all this is good revelation because we get to see who you really are with your disguise finally removed.

      As I mentioned before you are suffering from multiple personality disorder. You ought to get that checked out. I can’t stop laughing at your empty remarks that the artificial state of Azerbaijan is independent. If this artificial state, a mere gas station for foreigners to exploit, is independent then why is it that for the last twenty years it’s been unable to make unilateral decisions to sort out and take care of its political issues in the region? Isn’t it because you are the same gutless artificial nation that you were twenty years ago? You people are an embarrassment to the idea of manhood. If we Armenians had half your oil revenues, Baku would have been our third capital years ago.

      You are so oblivious to the fact no matter how many billions of dollars of deals you make and with whomever, at the end of the day, you are still Russia’s property. The Central Asian fascist mongoloid mutt of a child killer tribe invented you 95 years ago but for over 70 years you were the property of Russia and continue to be. It is an illusion to even remotely make believe you are not just because there is no Soviet Union anymore. This delusionary idea of independence and the total subjugation of your artificial country are at best a week apart because Russia has that much power to shatter your make-belief illusion of independence. It is hilarious for you, as a member of this illusionary independent and artificial state, to tell us we can keep Karabakh. We don’t need either yours or Putin’s hand puppet “Nancy” of a gutless and draft-dodging pseudo-president Aliyev’s permission to keep what is truly ours and what we already have.

      You are so beaten down and humiliated by the Armenians that even in the face of reality, when you begged for cease fire when Armenians were about to take over half your artificial state, you keep playing the Russian card. That is so pathetic and indeed very becoming of your artificial nation. Nothing is more gratifying to me than watch hallucinating pseudo-Turks like you dig so deep down into your fallacious world to come up with all sorts of fabricated excuses for the pathetic state you are in because, accepting defeat at the hands of the Armenians, is like taking poison pills. But we already fed you those poison pills and in large doses and that is why you are so bitter that like hyenas, unable to hunt for themselves, you are always chasing that imaginary smell of a hunt by a much bigger hunter to steal a piece for yourselves.

      How long are you gutless people going to bribe and blackmail the powers in the region with cheap oil and how long are you going to hide behind Turkey like neutered poppies with no manhood left in them to put their money where their mouth is? It is truly embarassing. By joining Russia’s Customs Union Armenia has dealt yet another blow to your shattered egos and has rendered all the billions you have been investing in your racist and anti-Armenian pursuits useless. But no worries, in a decade or two you can always use all the scrap metal from your rusted toys to build many monuments to your ax-murdering hero Safarov and his chicken-hawk gutless of a boss Aliyev in Baku when we give them both the long-awaited justice they deserve.

  9. To the Armenian Diaspora, as well as the Armenians world over, there is a Western Armenian entity in which our people were murdered and from which they were uprooted. There is no abstraction here.

    We know where Western Armenia is, we know under whose occupation it is still, we know the provinces it comprises and we know, by varying degrees and by our family history, some or perhaps many intimate details about certain localities.

    If there is any abstraction in terms of intimately familiarizing oneself with this region that is because for over several decades we have been cut off from this region because of the politics of denial by our enemies and the passage of time has taken the toll on us.

    Many books have been written on Western Armenia that one can read to familiarize oneself. It is also undeniably important to visit these places to see them with our own eyes but I don’t think this responsibility should fall on individuals. There has to be collective effort and an organized movement.

    Furthermore, the primary responsibility to fight against and eliminate the marginalization of Western Armenia from collective concerns and the reality of the Armenians living in the Diaspora should not fall on individuals but on our educational system and on our leadership.

  10. To Kerim(not Karim)latter is written and pronounced by Persians thus.I am sure Avery will take care of his queries.Am not interested in dialogue with a Cabeza de Turco….I have explained how that phrase became commonplace in Spain.In short they Spanish Armada 400 yrs ago defeated them..before doing so on the hiogh seas, the captain asked the Ottoman captain to surrender.latteer did npot then he gave it to them destroying their fleet.But before doing so he toild his colleagues these are Cabeza de Trurcos(hard headed)…I did not say it read it in book entitled la Batalla del lepanto!!!Turks as yet are of that nature..they will not budge untill hit hard or made to kneel down by U.S. U.K.and othjer powers in EU.This much for that.
    As rgds my above post,yes there is work in progress by our RA people completely surveying the W.armenian lands.But also get hold of series of books from L.A. that prof. Richard Hovhanissian has written one each in over 200 pages describing all of the Provinces in W.Armenia.he went there also toook photos and brought pieces of relics of Armenian churches etc., showed in his discourses travelling not only in the U.s. cities but also as far as Australia.So mr. Ketsemanian work is being done in that respect to not let Western armenia stay or become an Abstraction.
    What´s more why do you think the latest armed struggle was staged by our ¨Khent¨boys as recently as the 1980´s?at the risk of being called terrorists,while they were staging ¨
    correctional acts of violence¨ to corregir-correct their diplomacy!!however they were smart enough to stop it on time to join with the NK freedom fighters and liberate totally t or most of it from illegal Axerbaijani do not be dismayed…work is on both in diaspora by suchj prominent historians(btw,I have the book ,signed by him for me for the Karin-Erzeroum-where I read and admired the Sanasarian school my father attended,learning Fren ch,Armenian and Toikish graduating with a gold medal…what a bldg.Much better than the one I attended in Tehran,forty yrs later…yes our people in W.Armenia had good schools and wonderfull churches, monasteries NOW GONE….and to think that we shall forget that?=?????????oh come on now be more is one thing to say we cannot as KERIM AGHA SAYS CONFRONT THE 6/700,000 strong toikish army(who wants to) another to wait untiull 16 million Kurds cannot just disappear.Fact is they are becoming more organized by and by..WE must organize in Diaspora and wait.That is imperative.Cannot do anything bellicose-wise,but try hard to make our CAUS/CASE known to the world IMPERATIVE!!! otherwise the world public opinion will be negative towards our CAUSE.We must begin to make lik ÇShicndler´s List.
    I suggerst m a m i g o n(by jack hashian, a novel9 be turned into a movie.Would be better than the Schindleers…
    Thjen we need National Invdestment Trust Fund..For repatriation not fundlings..etc,. etc.., etc.,
    best hasgcoghin

  11. Addendum,
    To add that the phrase Cabeza de Turco-once again- became reintroduced commonplace when Colonel Tejero invaded the Spanish Las Cortes(Parliament, )in the 1980´s.And behold in a magazine I handed to ARF in Richfield Armenian Church St. Vartan,on Face of that magazine Colonel´s photo appeared wearing a Turkish fess,while below it the phrase..CABEZA DE TURCO…
    In short the Press(spanish) dubbed him as that, since he had dared to make that armed entry ..into the Cortes.
    he was subdued by King Juan Carlos(chief commander of the Spanish forces) and imprisoned…

    • We should see our own mistakes first. For the last
      100 years what have we been doing, killing one another,
      looking down on one another. Right now many Armenians
      are leaving the country and it is not the Turks who are
      forcing them to leave the country. Let’s clean our own
      house first and start afresh, instead of always bringing
      excuses for our problems and short comings. We know what
      the Turks did and who they are. So, please let’s stop bringing
      excuses every time we face a problem of our own. My grand-
      parents were from Western Armenia, so I know what happened to
      their families and what they had to go through for me to be

  12. Hmmmm. In the mid-1990s I tried to raise funds to get a documentary on “Western Armenia” made. I approached various Armenian organisations, all unsuccessfully. I especially remember one reply: “this subject is of no interest to the London Armenian community”. Another, the AGBU, offered to loan me a video camera (but no money) as long as they got joint copyright on anything filmed with the camera. That was rather like lending a writer a pen, but no paper, and then expecting to get part ownership of everything written using that pen! Nor could I find even a single Armenian willing to come to Turkey without being paid to do it. Not surprisingly, the documentary never got made.

  13. Tamara,
    Don’t be alarmed* and some who think likewise ,that this phenomenae is exclusively Armenian.That of leaving fatherland..When(some int´l history)Civil War ended in Spain,1936-1939, 2 Million ,out of 38 million population left the country.Both because they were liberal,Republicans(socialist) as well as FOR WORK, money-bread…
    Same happened after Yugoslavia was partitioned in a few countris..quite recently,some 2/3 million ex yugoslavs left.Why great Turkey has close to 5 million Turks in Germany lonly and a million por more in other Euro countries ,who left Turkey during past 15/20 yrs…
    After all, you know that the Communist regime was replaced by a Free market Economy(I´d say Wild free market economyu9meaning in plain words the capitañistic system sset in..not only in RA, but in all 14 other ex soviet republics…
    I was in Europe only 2 weeks ago…so many RRRRusiand on the sea shores to the West…with plenty of dough to spend.Indeed I came acfross those who were hard up, one playing the accordion cafe to cafe to get alms..another came to fix nephews car,a mechanic that had real good knowleddge of his work and did a good job in nephews small garden..getting 1/4th of what the local Car repair shop would get from him..
    wE MUST HAVE NUCLEUS OF nATIONAL INVEST. FUND ESTABLISHED by our magnates six or 8 of them a Billion dollar one in geneva,CH, then all the way down to hundred dollars investors.The proceeds re invested in Scandinavian countries-an exampl-Govt. bonds..rendering so,me 3/4% .half of this to investors , the other for Anti turkish propaganda and some important part for those who wish to repatriate given as loans. say hundred thousand dollar loans AGAINST MORTGAGED PROPERTY THAT THEY WILL AIM TO HAVE IN RA OR ARTSAKH…IT IS NOT THAT DIFFICULT TO ACCOMPLISH.eXCEPT THAT OUR bbb´S WON´T LIKE IT AND MAY OPPOSIE IT bbb MEANS bISHPS, BENEFACTORS AND BOSSES.tHIS IS ara bASLIOZIAN´S PERCEPTION OF OUR PRESENT -SINCE 80/90 YRS-LEADERSHIP IN dIASPORA…

  14. To RVDV,
    :Land as a rule,i.e. occupied or won over land, is not returned-asi por asi-just like that.It may be RETURNED, if for an example,Russia suddenly -with over 1000 nuclear warheads-decides to press great Turkey to do so.or Uncle Sam , by and by moves to press Turkey to fistly let kurds be on their own, so to speak…then indeed. THE ARMENIAN CENTURY OLD QUESTION IS BROUGHT UP -could also be quietly, by and by,pushing Syriain kurds into uniting with the Toikish ones and then the iraqui ones are there to join up indeed. Remains the Iranian side and some very few from RA.Thus a KURDISTAN! when the Ermenis will then take centrestage.But again I do not think this will happen immediately always by and by..yavash yavash. One thing I am quite certain of either of powers to be will not do it in one blow…for they also know full well the Turkish wrath*Khers, quite well. When triggered, pressed to show itself ,it could cost hundred thousands of liveds in the area. it must be done slowly..

  15. My family is from Kharpert and Ordu. I would welcome the opportunity to see the land my grandparents were from. However, I will not spend one cent to subsidize the ancestors of the criminals and murderers who killed our people, stole their property and way of life, and to this day still REFUSE to acknowledge the genocide of our people and culture. Only when the Turkish government officially recognizes the atrocities of their ancestors will I consider visiting the land they have stolen. Until that time the closest I will get to my ancestral homeland, and to see Mt. Ararat, was from Khor Virap.

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