WEST BLOOMFIELD, Mich.- Eleven Michigan cities joined the Armenian community in Michigan in commemorating the 106th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide by issuing proclamations declaring April 24th, 2021, “Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day”, reported the Armenian National Committee of Michigan.
The mayors of the cities of Ann Arbor, Birmingham, East Lansing, Farmington Hills, Livonia, Novi, Sterling Heights, Southfield, Troy, Warren and West Bloomfield Township all highlighted the importance of its citizens to remember and raise awareness about the atrocities carried out by the Ottoman Empire against the Armenian people. The proclamations from the cities of Farmington Hills, Warren, Livonia, Troy and West Bloomfield Township also stated “the failure to learn from the past allows history to repeat itself as the world saw during the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war when the military forces of Azerbaijan and Turkey attacked the Armenian civilian population of Nagorno-Karabakh and its churches and civic buildings, resulting in casualties and loss of ancestral land and property, motivated by the same genocidal campaign that their ancestors suffered 106 years earlier.”
“It is our sad responsibility to make sure that we always remember and never forget,” said the Farmington Hills mayor Vicki Barnett, “Unfortunately, people are not doing a good enough job in remembering,” she added.
The proclamations are a result of the work of the ANC of Michigan and the grassroots efforts of its activists to reaffirm and recognize the Armenian Genocide. “This year, the ANC of Michigan focused on obtaining municipal proclamations recognizing the Armenian Genocide and connecting it to the continuing genocide of Artsakh’s Armenians through the war provoked by Turkey and Azerbaijan in autumn 2020. We should never underestimate the effectiveness of having the elected leaders of the cities and towns where we live state on the record their stance on the issues that matter to us through the proclamation process because these official government documents serve as important pronouncements that can lead to deeper local relationships that advance the goals on our dynamic Hai Tahd agenda.” said ANC of Michigan’s Georgi-Ann Oshagan.
While accepting the proclamation from the Farmington Hills City Council, ANC of Michigan’s chairwoman Dzovinar Hamakorzian noted, “These proclamations are very important to bring awareness to the ongoing genocide against the Armenians, and other genocides around the world. As recently as last September, Azerbaijan and Turkey with the help of jihadist mercenaries launched an unprovoked attack on the Republic of Artsakh, killing thousands of Armenians, and forcing thousands to leave their ancestral lands, destroying centuries old Armenian cultural and religious cities. We still have more than 200 prisoners of war in Azerbaijan, who are being mistreated and tortured. Turkey and Azerbaijan need to be held accountable to prevent future genocides.”
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer also issued a proclamation on behalf of the people of Michigan, proclaiming April 24, 2021, as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day. She also issued a statement with Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist and Michigan House Representative Mari Manoogian after President Biden formally recognized the Armenian Genocide stating, “Today, President Biden is taking a long overdue step to formally recognize the slaughter of Armenians in the early 20th century by the government of Turkey as a genocide…We must ensure that generations of Americans and Michiganders to come honor the memory of those we lost during the Armenian Genocide.”
The Michigan House designated April 24, 2021, as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day by passing House Resolution 87 which was introduced by Rep. Mari Manoogian.
More than 50,000 Armenian-Americans living in Michigan have been working very hard for over six decades to bring awareness to the injustices committed against the Armenian nation and, most recently, the Artsakh War.