ACNIS Explores Ramifications of US Genocide Recog. on Foreign Policy

Armenian Center for National and International Studies
75 Yerznkian Street
Yerevan 0033, Armenia
Tel: (+374 – 10) 52.87.80 or 27.48.18
Fax: (+374 – 10) 52.48.46
Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

August 14, 2007

ACNIS Explores the Ramifications of United States
Genocide Recognition on Foreign Policy

Yerevan–The Armenian Center for National and International Studies
(ACNIS) today convened a discussion on the foreign policy surrounding
Armenian-Turkish and US-Turkish relations. The meeting brought
together officials of international relations, leading analysts,
policy specialists, and diasporan university students interning among
various governmental and non-governmental organizations within the
Republic of Armenia and media representatives.

In his opening remarks Mr. Haig Kherlopian, student of the American
University in Washington D.C. discussed the current status of House
Resolution 106 which officially recognizes the Armenian Genocide of
1915. "The American Diaspora is raised with the mentality that passing
legislation to recognize the Genocide is critical for the well-being
of the collective Armenian identity. It is important, however, it is
also important to understand the American government’s perspective,"
he said.

Analyst for the Caucasus region and Central Asia Mr. Richard
Giragosian shared his expertise on the specific consequences that may,
in his professional opinion, befall the three states concerned if
America’s government does indeed pass pending genocide legislation in
the American House of Representatives.

The seminar focused mainly of those risks concerning military and
economic relations to which Mr. Richard Giragosian former staff-member
of the Joint Economic Committee on the United States’ Congress
commented that Turkey is currently struggling to forge a new national
identity and this struggle will determine whether Turkey will look to
the East or to the West. According to Giragosian, it is in Armenia’s
interest that Turkey joins the European Union because, "Turkey within
the straight-jacket of the EU will result in a weakened Turkish
military and bring European borders to Armenia".

Ms. Talar Hovnanian, Student of the Univerity of California, posed a
question for discussion to the diasporan university students present
reflecting on the ways in which Armenians abroad will be able to unify
themselves without a cause such as the Armenian Genocide as
motivation, exploring, "the likelihood that after the issue of
genocide recognition is taken off of the table, whether it is possible
for the Diaspora to unify themselves on a critical but little known
issue like diverted rail-roads or democratic development". The
participants concluded that it is the Diaspora’s responsibility to
begin to view the Armenian situation with a more practical point of
view rather than the ideological unifying platform provided by the
need for genocide recognition.

Founded in 1994 by Armenia’s first Minister of Foreign Affairs Raffi
K. Hovannisian and supported by a global network of contributors,
ACNIS serves as a link between innovative scholarship and the public
policy challenges facing Armenia and the Armenian people in the
post-Soviet world. It also aspires to be a catalyst for creative,
strategic thinking and a wider understanding of the new global
environment. In 2007, the Center focuses primarily on civic education,
democratic development, conflict resolution, and applied research on
critical domestic and foreign policy issues for the state and the

For further information on the Center call (37410) 52-87-80 or
27-48-18; fax (37410) 52-48-46; email [email protected] or [email protected];
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