The Middle East is troubled, and the Armenians of the region are in crisis.
Political problems in Syria, though alleviated, still keep the country in a state of instability, especially since Turkey has invaded and occupied its northern regions. Some forces continue to act against the central government and Western powers have blockaded the country, further exacerbating the economic instability, while the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc. The Armenians of Syria and their national, community, and organizational structures need pan-Armenian support, especially in the educational and health sectors.
The crisis created in Lebanon over the past two years, including the economic downturn, the severe devaluation of Lebanese currency, political instability, the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, and the explosion of the Beirut port, gradually distressed the country, further eroding community life today where Lebanese Armenians are confronted with unprecedented dangers and difficulties. Today, a significant portion of the population lives under severe socioeconomic conditions, unable to even secure basic food with its almost non-existent monthly income. People are panicked by the soaring fuel prices, the disappearance of many commodities from the market, the bread shortage and the terrible rise in the prices of scarce items. Medicine has become unavailable and inaccessible due to the removal of government subsidies, threatening the health and life of citizens. Armenian schools face unprecedented financial hardship, while severe electricity shortages have crippled daily life and the economy and threaten the health care system.
The ARF Bureau, the executive boards of the ARF youth and student associations and affiliated organizations started working in the fall of 2019 to meet the needs of the Armenians in Lebanon and Syria. As the turmoil in Lebanon escalated in recent months, we took new steps; the Armenian Relief Society (ARS) reinvigorated its fundraising efforts, and the ARF Bureau issued a special appeal on August 4, 2021, emphasizing the necessity of supporting the Armenians of the region.
The current situation is extremely alarming and it is our collective duty to mitigate the danger by meeting the many and immediate needs of the Armenians of the region, especially of those who are most vulnerable and needy.
A new fundraising campaign is already underway. Each organization has mobilized its ranks and we call on the Armenian state and our compatriots in Armenia, Artsakh and the Diaspora to immediately support this very important campaign.
Armenian Relief Society Central Executive Board
Homenetmen Central Executive Committee
Hamazkayin Armenian Educational and Cultural Association Central Executive