ASBAREZ ONLINE [05-14-2004]


1) Putin, Kocharian Discuss Economic Ties
2) Some 1,000 Georgians Eager to Move to Tsalka
3) Pennsylvania House Passes Armenian Genocide Resolution
4) Ferrahian Celebrates 40th Anniversary

1) Putin, Kocharian Discuss Economic Ties

(AP/Itar-Tass)–Boosting trade between the two former Soviet republics topped
the agenda at Friday’s meeting between Armenian President Robert Kocharian and
his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
Putin noted that trade has increased 34 percent in recent years. “This is a
record indicator that we are moving in the right direction.”
Kocharian recalled last year’s major agreement that gave Russia financial
control over Armenia’s sole nuclear power plant, in exchange for the
cancellation of $40 million dollar debts to Russian nuclear fuel suppliers.
The start of true economic cooperation came with that “major equity-for-debt
agreement,” Kocharian said. “I would like to say with utmost confidence
that we
started and are moving together on all issues.”
The meeting took place on the second day of Kocharian’s working visit to
Moscow that included meetings with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov and
the chief executive of the Gazprom natural gas giant, Aleksei Miller.
Kocharian welcomed the increased bilateral commercial ties of recent years,
saying, “Until recently, we only talked about military cooperation while
mentioning that economic interaction is lagging. Now I can state with full
confidence that we began to move in all directions at a very even pace; it
serves as a very serious impetus to effective cooperation and

2) Some 1,000 Georgians Eager to Move to Tsalka

TBILISI (Armenpress/Civil.GE)–The Georgian ministry of refugees and
resettlement reported that approximately 1000 applications have been submitted
by Georgian families wishing to relocate to Georgia’s Tsalka district.
150-strong unit of Interior Troops were dispatched to the southern
multi-ethnic district of Tsalka on May 11, following clashes between local
ethnic Armenians and Georgians on May 9. Several people were reportedly
Ethnic Armenians comprise 57% of population of Tsalka district in the Kvemo
Kartli region, which has a population of around 20,000, according to the
Georgian department of statistics; 4,500 ethnic Greeks, 2,500 ethnic
and up to 2,000 Azeris live in the Tsalka district.
Local officials had described the clashes between ethnic Georgians and
Armenians sporadic “communal violence,” which has flared-up in the past

3) Pennsylvania House Passes Armenian Genocide Resolution


HARRISBURG (ANC-PA)–The Pennsylvania House of Representatives unanimously
passed a resolution designating April 24, 2004 “Pennsylvania’s Day of
Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-1923.”
Representative Daylin Leach (D) and 56 co-sponsors introduced Pennsylvania
House Resolution No. 593 (HR593).
“The Armenian National Committee of Pennsylvania thanks Rep. Leach for his
leadership in introducing this resolution. We also commend the House of
Representatives for their unwavering commitment to recognize the Armenian
Genocide and to honor the memories of the victims whose descendants are
citizens of the Commonwealth,” said ANC Pennsylvania co-chairman Dr. Ara
Chalian. “The ANC of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania General Assembly
have an
enduring relationship that spans nearly twenty years. We look forward to
continue working closely with Rep. Leach and others who take an active role in
supporting the issues of the Armenian American community.”
The resolution identifies the Ottoman Empire as the perpetrators of a
that claimed the lives of one and a half million Armenian men, women, and
children from 1915 to 1923. It also acknowledges that modern Turkey continues
to deny and distort the facts of the Armenian Genocide. Through this
resolution, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania reaffirms its commitment to
condemn atrocities, such as the Armenian Genocide, and to prevent similar
crimes against humanity from occurring again.
This is the second consecutive year that the first-term legislator has
introduced an Armenian Genocide resolution. Rep. Leach, whose wife is of
Armenian descent, represents a district which includes a large Armenian
American constituency, two Armenian churches, and the Armenian Sisters
“It is important that we never forget the atrocities visited upon the Armenian
People in the last century,” stated Rep. Leach. “It is only by remembering the
past that we can recognize the gathering warning signs of new oppression. As
long as I am in the legislature, I can assure you that no one will forget the
struggle of the Armenian People,” concluded Rep. Leach.
In addition to the Pennsylvania House Resolution, the Pittsburgh City Council
passed a proclamation declaring April 24, 2004 “A Day of Remembrance” for the
victims of the Armenian Genocide. The City Proclamation was introduced and
spearheaded by Councilman Douglas Shields, and was co-sponsored by Council
President Gene Ricciardi and Council members Luke Ravenstahl, Jim Motznik,
William Peduto, Len Bodack, Alan Hertzberg, Twanda Carlisle, and Sala Udin.
“On behalf of the Pittsburgh area Armenian-American community, I would
like to
thank Councilman Doug Shields and the City Council for observing the Armenian
Genocide,” stated ANC activist Rostom Sarkissian, who resides in Pittsburgh.
“This proclamation and others like it not only honor the victims and survivors
of the Armenian Genocide, but they also send a strong message to the Turkish
government that continued denial of this Genocide can no longer be a
state-sponsored policy. Time has come for Turkey to join the international
community in acknowledging the Armenian Genocide for what it wasgenocide,”
concluded Sarkissian.
The ANC-PA urges all Pennsylvania Armenians to contact their State
Representative to thank them for passing HR593 and the Pittsburgh City Council
for their “A Day of Remembrance” Proclamation.

4) Ferrahian Celebrates 40th Anniversary

ENCINO– Over 700 people–alumni, past and present students, parents, and
faculty and staff–gathered to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first
Armenian School in the United States–Holy Martyrs Armenian Elementary and
Ferrahian High School.
The May 2 event served to honor faculty members and teachers who have
dedicated over 15 years to the school for their exceptional contributions.
Former students praised the school not only for the level of education it
provides, but also for preserving and passing on Armenian language, history,
and culture to successive generations. The school’s founder Gabriel Injejikian
delivered a heartfelt address, praising the school’s achievements and
encouraging a continued path toward similar success.

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