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Largest Yazidi Temple to Be Built in Armenia

YEREVAN (A.W)—A new Yazidi temple—what is being called the biggest of its kind in the world—is being built approximately 22 miles outside of Yerevan, in the village of Aknalich. The temple, which will be named Quba Mere Diwane, will be built from Armenian granite and Iranian marble and will house a 200-square meter prayer hall, reported the UK’s the Guardian.

The site of the Quba Mere Diwane Yazidi temple at Aknalich, (Photo: Maxim Edwardsacquisition)

The construction is being funded by a Moscow-based Yazidi businessman named Mirza Sloian, according to EurasiaNet, and is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

“This temple is important for us because our community is facing extinction. Our community is displaced around the world, and we need temples in each place for our children to keep their culture and identity,” Ahmed Burjus of the UK branch of Yazda, a global Yazidi organization, told the Guardian.

The Yazidi people represent the largest minority group in Armenia, numbering over 35,000 people. Thousands of Yazidis immigrated to a part of the Russian Empire spanning present-day Armenia and Georgia during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Escaping religious persecution from Ottoman Turks and Sunni Kurds, many Yazidis were killed alongside Armenians during the Armenian Genocide.

There are currently two villages in Armenia’s Armavir Province—Yeraskhahun and Ferik—that are predominantly inhabited by Yazidis. In 2012, the Yazidi community opened the first temple outside their “Lalish” homeland—the temple of Ziarat, in Aknalich village.

4 Comments on Largest Yazidi Temple to Be Built in Armenia

  1. It’s better to have a Yezidi than a Masonic temple in Armenia. The latter will inevitably contribute to the destruction of the Armenian statehood…

    • Yazidis _volunteered_ in healthy numbers to fight in Artsakh during 1988-1994. They fought valiantly. They have been loyal citizens of Armenia for generations. They have earned right to build the largest Yazidi temple in Armenia.

      And I am glad the new RoA constitution allocates RoA minorities seats in the National Assembly.

  2. I wonder if non-Yazidis would be allowed in, because I’m curious to see what it will look like inside. Much respect for the Yazidis.

  3. Dear Readers,
    My father Sarkis’s cousin Faron age 15 walked through Syria and made it into Iraq in 1915. Luckily for her, she was taken in by Yazidis in the Sinjar and was kept safely there for the duration of the war. If you don’t know the history, the Yazidis adamantly refused to hand over Armenian children to the Turkish gendarmes. And God bless them for that. My father really liked the Yazidis and I know had he lived he would have been very pleased about their temple in Armenia. Also as a truck driver in Iraq in the 1930s he went everywhere and loved the country and the people. He married my mother in Mosul and they would be appalled at the destruction of Assyrian and Armenian churches by ISIS. And by the way, ISIS destroyed extremely historical mosques in the Mosul region as well as the revered tomb of Jonah, Nebi Yunis.
    Sincerely,
    Ellen Sarkisian Chesnut

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