1,000 JOIN SYSTEM OF A DOWN IN RALLY
The Gauntlet, CA
April 26 2006
Armenian Americans from across the United States joined today with
System Of A Down’s Serj Tankian and John Dolmayan at a Washington,
DC “Rally for Justice,” urging the Turkish Government to end its
worldwide campaign of Armenian Genocide denial.
Organized by the Armenian National Committee of Greater Washington
(ANC-GW) and the Armenian Youth Federation Washington Chapter,
the protest attracted over 1,000 activists to the Turkish Embassy,
as Armenians worldwide marked the 91st anniversary of this crime
against humanity. Among the participants was DC United star player
Alecko Eskandarian, who was MLS Cup Champion and MVP in 2004.
Tankian and Dolmayan are in Washington, DC as part of a three-day
advocacy tour in support of Congressional recognition of the Armenian
Genocide. Following participation in the rally on Monday, the band
members will be meeting with Members of Congress and the media urging
passage of legislation in the Senate and House that would recognize
the Armenian Genocide. On Tuesday evening, Tankian and Dolmayan
will host a screening of excerpts of “Screamers,” a powerful film by
Carla Garapedian about System of a Down’s international anti-genocide
On Wednesday evening, they will be honored for their vocal pursuit
of justice for the Armenian Genocide at the annual Armenian Genocide
observance on Capitol Hill.
The inter-generational “Rally for Justice” brought together young
and old in their call for the Turkish Government to end its campaign
of Genocide denial. Activists were met by a smaller group of Turkish
and Azerbaijani counter-protesters, who were apparently organized by
the Turkish Embassy staff and its paid lobbyists.
Following the demonstration, attendees walked to the Embassy of the
Republic of Armenia for a short service and wreath-laying ceremony.
Members of local Armenian organizations placed wreaths and flowers
in front of the Khatchkar (stone cross).
The ceremony was led by Ambassador Tatoul Markarian and featured
remarks by Nagorno Karabagh representative Vardan Barseghyan, and
the participation of the Washington Homenetmen Armenian Scouting troop.