Cruel Choices

April 14, 2004
OP-ED COLUMNIST
Cruel Choices
By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF

I can’t get the kaleidoscope of genocide out of my head since my trip
last month to the Sudan-Chad border: the fresh graves, especially the
extra-small mounds for children; the piles of branches on graves to
keep wild animals from digging up corpses; the tales of women being
first raped and then branded on the hand to stigmatize them forever;
the isolated peasants, unfamiliar with electricity, who suddenly
encounter the 21st century as helicopters machine-gun their children.

Then there were the choices faced by the Sudanese refugees I
interviewed. For example, who should fetch water from the wells?

The Arab Janjaweed militia, armed by Sudan’s government, shoots tribal
African men and teenage boys who show up at the wells, and rapes women
who go. So parents described an anguished choice: Should they risk
their 7- or 8-year-old children by sending them to wells a mile away,
knowing that the children have the best prospect of returning?

And what should parents do when the Janjaweed seize their children, or
gang-rape their daughters? Should they resist, knowing they will then
be shot at once in front of their children?

Or what about the parents described by Human Rights Watch who were
allowed by the militia to choose how their children would die: burned
alive or shot to death?

Some 1,000 people in Sudan’s Darfur region are still dying each
week. But at least the world has finally begun to pay attention – and
it’s striking how a hint of concern in the West has persuaded Sudan to
reach a cease-fire there.

President Bush finally found his voice last week, protesting the
“atrocities” in Darfur. More forcefully, Kofi Annan warned on the day
commemorating the Rwandan genocide that reports about brutalities in
Darfur “leave me with a deep sense of foreboding. . . . The
international community cannot stand idle.”

So far in Darfur, thousands have been killed, and about one million
black Africans have been driven from their homes by the
lighter-skinned Arabs in the Janjaweed. Vast sections of Darfur, a
region the size of France, have been burned and emptied. The Janjaweed
have also destroyed wells, or fouled them by dumping corpses into
them, to keep villagers from ever returning.

“You can drive for 100 kilometers and see nobody, no civilian,” said
Dr. Mercedes Tatay, a physician with Doctors Without Borders who has
just spent a month in Darfur. “You pass through large villages,
completely burned or still burning, and you see nobody.”

In the refugee camps in Darfur, malnutrition and measles are claiming
the survivors, especially young children. Roger Winter, assistant
administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development,
estimates that even if the fighting stops today, at least 100,000 are
still likely to die in coming months – of disease, malnutrition and
other ailments. Yet Sudan is still curbing access to Darfur by the
U.N. and aid groups.

I’m not suggesting an invasion of Sudan. But it’s a fallacy to think
that just because we can’t do everything to stop genocide, we
shouldn’t do anything. One of the lessons of the last week is how
little it took – from Washington, the U.N. and the African Union – to
nudge Sudan into accepting a cease-fire and pledging access for
humanitarian workers.

Now we need more arm-twisting to get Sudan to comply with the
cease-fire (it marked the first day, Monday, by bombing the town of
Anka). The Sudanese government is testing us, but so far the State
Department has shown a commendable willingness to stand up to it.

We can save many tens of thousands of lives in the coming weeks – but
only if Mr. Bush and Mr. Annan speak out more boldly, if the
U.N. Security Council insists on humanitarian access to Darfur and if
the aid community mounts a huge effort before the rainy season makes
roads impassible beginning in late May.

In the last 100 years, the United States has reacted to one genocide
after another – Armenians, Jews, Cambodians, Bosnians – by making
excuses at the time, and then saying, too late, “Oh, if only we had
known!” Well, this time we know what is happening in Darfur: 110,000
refugees have escaped into Chad and testify to the atrocities.

How many more parents will be forced to choose whether their children
are shot or burned to death before we get serious?

Copyright 2004 The New York Times Company

Chief policeman says situation in Armenia stable

Chief policeman says situation in Armenia stable

Public Television of Armenia, Yerevan
14 Apr 04

The prime minister [Andranik Markaryan] has requested the head of the
Armenian police, Ayk Arutyunyan, to make a report on the recent events
in the republic at a government session.

Ayk Arutyunyan told the government about the events which took place
on the night of 12th to 13th April and their consequences, and about
the current situation in the capital and in the republic.

The head of the police said that the situation is now stable.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Armenian president calls for dialogue with opposition

Armenian president calls for dialogue with opposition

Public Television of Armenia, Yerevan
14 Apr 04

[Presenter] President Robert Kocharyan has announced that the
opposition forces are responsible for the events which took place on
Bagramyan Avenue. He said this at a meeting with the leadership of the
United Communist Party of Armenia. The president said that the
opposition should work on improving people’s living conditions. Today
the opposition has all the conditions for normal work. Robert
Kocharyan said the authorities have the right to intervene if the
opposition chooses to act differently so as to defend people and avoid
disorder and disturbances.

[Correspondent over video of meeting] At the meeting with the head of
state, the political bureau of the United Communist Party of Armenia
spoke not only about the party’s problems, activities and programme
but also about the internal political situation.

The leader of the party, Yuriy Manukyan, noted that young people are
now joining the ranks of the United Communist Party. The meeting also
discussed the country’s social and economic developments and the
structure of local authorities.

The participants in the meeting also called for stability and law and
order in the country. The communists also stressed that in no case the
opposition should disrupt stability in the country. Robert Kocharyan
spoke about the current situation in the country at the request of the
meeting. Speaking about the importance and need for dialogue, the
president noted that it would be wrong to avoid it.

[Robert Kocharyan, captioned] Generally speaking I think that it would
be wrong to avoid dialogue. I must say that during the last 12 and 18
months Armenia’s political forces, the ruling coalition, had many
meetings with representatives of the opposition. For as long as the
opposition position is black and white, there will be nothing to
discuss. This is where the problem lies. It does not mean that we do
not accept dialogue. When the dialogue is black and white it means an
ultimatum. Dialogue in the form of an ultimatum is unacceptable.

[Correspondent] Speaking about the recent events in the country, he
noted that the opposition is responsible for what happened. He
stressed that the police acted within its powers to prevent disorder
and establish law or order in the country. Stressing the importance of
the opposition to the country, President Kocharyan noted that the
opposition should channel its energies into improving the country’s
and peoples’ lives.

[Robert Kocharyan] No government can work productively without the
opposition. From this angle, the opposition must also support the
president’s intentions. What does the country’s president need? For
the government to work productively, the opposition must help it by
revealing shortages in its work. In the end, both the country and
people will win. But the opposition is now refusing to do this and is
acting differently.

[Correspondent] Speaking about the undesirable political events and
the opposition’s struggle, Robert Kocharyan noted that this was forced
on the people.

[Robert Kocharyan] First of all our people should understand that this
struggle is not their struggle. It is quite a different struggle. This
struggle and related events make no impact at all on the country’s
economy, financial market or investments.

There are positive tendencies. Whatever happened belongs to the
political sphere. I am sure that the conditions in our country which
is still developing are not yet right for that.

Nune Aleksanyan, “Aylur”.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

BAKU: Azerbaijan to recognize Turkish Cyprus if UN plan fails

Azerbaijan to recognize Turkish Cyprus if UN plan fails – Azeri leader

ANS TV, Baku
15 Apr 04

[Presenter] If Northern Cyprus says yes and the Greek Cypriot side
says no during the forthcoming referendum in Cyprus [on a UN plan to
reunify Cyprus], Azerbaijan will be one of the first countries to
recognize the [Turkish] Republic of Northern Cyprus. This sensational
statement was made by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev at a meeting
with the local media within the framework of his visit to Turkey. Our
special correspondent Qanira Pasayeva reports from Turkey. Hello,
Qanira.

[Qanira Pasayeva over the phone] Hello, Leyla. First, President Ilham
Aliyev had a luncheon with the heads of the Turkish mass media
today. Many issues were discussed during the luncheon. The Nagornyy
Karabakh problem was discussed most of all.

I should first note that we do not have enough information about the
event because Azerbaijani journalists were barred from it. They were
not even allowed to listen so as to know what was being discussed. But
I had a telephone conversation with the editor-in-chief of Zaman
newspaper. I learnt from him what issues had been discussed. He said
that the main topics were the Nagornyy Karabakh problem and the
current talks with Armenia. He said that Ilham Aliyev had voiced an
interesting idea. If Armenia and Azerbaijan are allowed to resolve the
conflict on their own, the problem can be resolved, Aliyev said. Asked
in what sense he said this, he said in all senses.

The president made his most interesting statement about the Turkish
community of Cyprus, i.e. the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus
officially recognized by Turkey. He said that if Northern Cyprus says
yes and Southern Cyprus says no, Azerbaijan will be one of the first
countries to recognize it [Northern Cyprus]. This is what the
president said. And the president’s statement is currently in the
focus of attention.

[Passage omitted: Correspondent repeats previous sentences]

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

BAKU: OSCE envoy, Azeri MPs discuss Karabakh

OSCE envoy, Azeri MPs discuss Karabakh

ANS TV, Baku
15 Apr 04

[Presenter] Goran Lennmarker, special representative of the OSCE
Parliamentary Assembly for Nagornyy Karabakh, has met the Azerbaijani
delegation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

[Reporter over video of meeting] On the first day of his visit to
Baku, Goran Lennmarker, special representative of the OSCE
Parliamentary Assembly for Nagornyy Karabakh, met members of the
Azerbaijani delegation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of
Europe. Naturally, the topic of the meeting between the guest and the
head of the Azerbaijani delegation, Samad Seyidov, and other members
of the delegation was Nagornyy Karabakh.

Addressing the guest, Mr Seyidov said that we favour a fair solution
to the Nagornyy Karabakh problem and the establishment of peace in the
Caucasus. Goran Lennmarker pledged assistance in a just settlement to
the conflict. He also blamed the European Union for failing to pay
attention to the processes in the South Caucasus in time. Goran
Lennmarker said that the OSCE attached great importance to the
situation in the region, particularly to the Armenian-Azerbaijani
relations. Quote, this is my second visit to Azerbaijan, I favour a
peaceful solution to the problem, all countries should take the same
position in order to settle the problem, end quote.

Mr Lennmarker said that Azerbaijan was the most stable country in the
South Caucasus.

At a meeting with members of the Milli Maclis [parliament] commission
for economic policy, the conflict was also in the focus of
attention. MP Sattar Safarov informed the guest about his
complaints. He especially noted that the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly
had so far adopted no document saying that Armenia is an aggressor
country. It is time to impose sanctions on Armenia, he said.

Goran Lennmarker is also expected to meet President Ilham Aliyev, the
Azerbaijani community of Nagornyy Karabakh and representatives of NGOs
today.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Parliament Forces Renew Calls for Dialogue with Opposition

PARLIAMENT FORCES RENEW CALLS FOR DIALOGUE WITH OPPOSITION

YEREVAN, APRIL 15, ARMENPRESS: Representatives of some
parliament-represented forces renewed today their calls for a dialogue
withopposition. Speaking at a briefing Rafik Petrosian from the
independent People’s Deputy group said the dialogue is the only way of
a political solution of the created tense situation. “Both sides
should make an endeavor to ease and then resolve their confrontation
only through political means,” but added that even if the dialogue is
not possible at this moment, the opposition must give up its
revolutionary calls, as the history shows that revolutions lead
eventually to destruction.

Rafik Petrosian then defended the authorities counteractions, which
he said were aimed to restore law and stave off new breaches of public
order. He also claimed that the April 13 events showed that the great
majority of Armenians are against revolutionary calls.

Stepan Demirchian of the opposition Ardarutyun (Justice alliance)
argued that the dialogue is possible only after individuals, who he
said, committed crimes and violated laws during the opposition rally
are held responsible.

Gurgen Arsenian, the head of United Labor Party faction denounced
the coalition members for disrupting the regular sessions of the
parliament forthree running days, describing at the same time the
current situation as “poaching,” regretting that his parliament
fellows are involved in it.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Relations with US, China and EU are Priorities For Armenia

RELATIONS WITH US, CHINA AND EU ARE PRIORITIES FOR ARMENIA

YEREVAN, APRIL 15, ARMENPRESS: When defining priorities for
Armenian foreign policy we take into considerations the processes that
take place inthe world, Armenian foreign minister Vartan Oskanian said
Wednesday. Among such processes are NATO enlargement, which brings
about a new situation and a new mentality. The next process is the
enlargement of the European Union. The third relates to the USA
project of the Greater Middle East, which is not as clear as are the
cases of NATO and EU but it is also an issue of great importance.

According to Oskanian, USA, China and EU have interests in the
region and defining relations with them are priorities for Armenian
foreign policy.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Armenian Diocese Church Online Bulletin – 04/15/2004

PRESS OFFICE
Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern)
630 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10016
Contact: Jake Goshert, Communications Officer
Tel: (212) 686-0710; Fax: (212) 779-3558
E-mail: [email protected]
Website:
April 15, 2004
___________________

Week of April 9 to April 15, 2004
* * *

ARMENIANS GATHER AT CATHEDRAL FOR EASTER

More than 1,500 Armenians from around New England gathered at St. Vartan
Cathedral for Easter services last Sunday (4/10). The celebration was
covered by a number of local and international print and broadcast
journalists. To see photos and read about Easter and Holy Week services at
the cathedral — and to see photos from Easter at the Mother See of Holy
Etchmiadzin — click to the Eastern Diocese’s website:
;selmonth=4&selyear=
2004

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/14/04)
* * *

HOLY FIRE CEREMONY CONDUCTED IN HOLY LAND

Bishop Vicken Aykazian, legate and ecumenical officer of the Easter Diocese,
represented the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem in the traditional Easter
Eve Holy Fire Ceremony last Saturday (4/10) in Jerusalem at the Church of
the Holy Sepulcher. Bishop Aykazian was the torchbearer, and accompanied
the Greek Orthodox Patriarch Irenios I into the Holy Tomb, where each lit
his bundle of candles from the oil lamp placed on Christ’s tomb.

The two then proceeded towards windows in the chapel of the Angel, through
which they passed candles out to the faithful from the Armenian, Greek,
Coptic, and Syrian Orthodox Churches.

(Source: Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem, 4/12/04)
* * *

PRIMATE TRAVELING TO CLEVELAND THIS WEEKEND

Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern Diocese, will be in
Cleveland, OH, this weekend, paying a pastoral visit to the St. Gregory of
Narek community. The Divine Liturgy on Sunday (4/18) will be followed by a
celebration of the parish’s 40th anniversary. The parish is located at 678
Richmond Rd. in Richmond Heights, OH.

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/15/04)
* * *

NEW PRIEST TO BE ORDAINED NEXT WEEKEND IN NEW YORK CITY

Next weekend (4/24-25), Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, Primate of the Eastern
Diocese, will ordain Dn. Aren Jebejian as a priest. Dn. Jebejian, the
deacon-in-charge of St. Gregory the Illuminator Church in Chicago, IL, will
be ordained during two days of celebration at New York City’s St. Vartan
Cathedral. The events are open to the public. For more information, click
to the Eastern Diocese’s website:
;selmonth=4&selyear=
2004

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/8/04)
* * *

REMEMBERING THE GENOCIDE

Next Saturday (4/24), Armenians around the world will commemorate the 89th
anniversary of the Armenian Genocide committed by the Ottoman Turks. On
Saturday (4/24), New York City’s St. Vartan Cathedral will hold a special
Martyrs Day Divine Liturgy at 10:30 a.m. followed by a requiem service at
noon. A large public commemoration will take place in New York City’s Times
Square at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 25, 2004. Other remembrances will occur
throughout the Eastern Diocese. For more information, call your local
parish and click to the Eastern Diocese’s website Calendar of Events:

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/14/04)
* * *

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE GENOCIDE

The Diocese’s St. Vartan Bookstore has a variety of resources to help you
and your family learn more about the Armenian Genocide. From academic
essays to books for children to Hollywood movies, you can find what you need
on the bookstore’s website,

For a list of recommended reading on the Genocide, click here:
;selmonth=4&selyear=
2004

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/15/04)
* * *

TURKISH AUTHOR TO SPEAK AT DIOCESAN CENTER TONIGHT

The Diocese’s Zohrab Information Center and the Tekeyan Cultural Association
will host author Kemal Yalcin today (4/15). The Turkish writer’s bold new
book, “You Rejoice My Heart,” is based on interviews with survivors of the
Armenian Genocide. A free reception will follow the discussion of his
courageous book, which will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Diocesan Center, 630
Second Ave. at 34th St. in New York City.

During the evening, Mr. Yalcin will sign copies of his new book. Also, a
limited supply is available from the St. Vartan Bookstore and can be shipped
to you signed. To buy your copy today and learn more about his book, click
to:

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/15/04)
* * *

RETREAT FOR 13-17 YEAR OLDS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE

The Eastern Diocese’s Youth Ministry Program will hold a retreat this
weekend for New England’s ACYOA Jrs. — kids ranging from 13 to 17 years
old. The retreat — led by Yn. Arpi Kouzouian, coordinator of youth
outreach for the Eastern Diocese — will be in Contocook, NH, and will focus
on the idea of stewardship. The young Armenians will examine the gifts God
gave them, and how those gifts can be used in service to the church
community. For information on this retreat or to organize one in your area,
e-mail Yn. Kouzouian at [email protected].

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/14/04)
* * *

APPLY TO SUMMER CAMP TODAY

Spaces are going fast at the Diocese’s St. Vartan and Hye Camps. To save
your child’s space today, click here:

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/15/04)
* * *

TRAVEL TO ARMENIA THIS YEAR

Traveling to Armenia strengthens your faith and dedication. If you haven’t
gone yet, there are five opportunities this year.

In June:

* Young Professionals Trip — June 12 to 26 / $2,250. Specifically designed
for travelers between the ages of 23 and 40, this trip offers a chance to
see the sights of Armenia and build life-long friendships with other
Armenian American professionals. Call the Fund for Armenian Relief (212)
889-5150.

* Diocesan Pilgrimage to Historic Armenia and the Republic of Armenia —
June 17 to July 7 / $3,450. Travel to Istanbul, historic Armenian locations
in modern day Turkey such as Musa Dagh, Cappadocia, Mt. Ararat, and Ani.
Continue to Armenia to tour important historical and cultural sites. For
more information call Armen Aroyan (626) 359-9510.

* Armenia Service Program (ASP) — June 22 to July 15 / $1,980. A unique
opportunity for Armenians between the ages of 18 and 28, to help run a
summer camp in the village of Yeghegnadzor before touring throughout
Armenia. Call Nancy Basmajian (212) 686-0710.

In September:

* Women’s Guild Pilgrimage to Armenia — September 16 to 27 / $2,400. Tour
Etchmiadzin, Yerevan, ancient holy sites, and current cultural activities.
For more information call Ann Devejian (203) 838-5758.

* Pilgrimage to Armenia — September 18 to October 3 / $2,350. A
Diocesan-sponsored trip to all the highlights of Armenia. For more
information call Sidon Travel at (818) 553-0777.

To get more information on any of these travel opportunities, e-mail
[email protected].

And don’t forget — you can also help fund the trip of a young person in
your parish, who will return more eager to be involved in parish life.

(Source: Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern), 4/15/04)

# # #

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

http://www.armenianchurch.org/news/index3.php?newsid=383&amp
http://www.armenianchurch.org/news/index3.php?newsid=381&amp
http://www.armenianchurch.org/calendar/index.php
http://www.stvartanbookstore.com/store.asp
http://www.armenianchurch.org/news/index3.php?newsid=382&amp
http://www.stvartanbookstore.com/product.asp?3=894
http://www.armenianchurch.org/families/programs/camps.html
www.armenianchurch.org

AYF to Host Youth Summit on Genocide Prevention at Georgetown U.

ARMENIAN YOUTH FEDERATION
YOUTH ORGANIZATION OF THE ARF-EASTERN USA-CENTRAL
EXECUTIVE
80 Bigelow Ave., Watertown, MA 02472
617-923-1933T
617-924-1933F

PRESS RELEASE
April 15, 2004
Contact: Armen Garabedian
201.755.9378; [email protected]

AYF TO HOST YOUTH SUMMIT ON GENOCIDE PREVENTION AT GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY

Former U.S. War Crimes Ambassador David Scheffer Among List of Notable
Speakers

Washington, DC- On the 89th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the
AYF-YOARF Eastern USA Central Hai Tahd Committee will be hosting a
`Youth Summit on Genocide Prevention,’ bringing together community
members and youth of different backgrounds to remember past atrocities
and discuss mechanisms – international and local – to avert future
crimes against humanity. The event will take place on April 24th,
from 1:00-4:00pm at the Georgetown University McNeir Auditorium.

The summit will feature a presentation by Dr. David Scheffer, the
former U.S. Ambassador at Large for War Crimes Issues (1997-2001).
Dr. Scheffer led U.S. support for international and hybrid criminal
tribunals and headed the U.S. delegation to U.N. talks on the
International Criminal Court until 2001. He also led the Atrocities
Prevention Inter-Agency Working Group. He is currently a visiting
professor of international law at Georgetown University Law Center,
where he teaches public international law, international institutions
law, and atrocity law.

Joining Scheffer is Richard O’Brien, founder of Improve the World
International and the Center for the Prevention of Genocide. The
Center monitors and studies precursors of genocide present around the
world. Mr. O’Brien has lectured at the university level on genocide
and genocide prevention. He holds an MA with a concentration in
Public Policy from Georgetown University.

The panel is rounded out with the participation of Richard Giragosian,
a Washington based analyst specializing in international relations
with a focus on security, politics and economics. He is a frequent
commentator on events in the Caucasus, Russia and Central Asia for
Radio Free Europe and Jane’s.

The `Youth Summit on Genocide Prevention’ is open to youth and people
of all ages committed to stopping genocide worldwide. The event is set
to coincide with the 89th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide,
commemorated worldwide on April 24th each year. During the years of
1915-1923, over 1.5 million Armenians were killed in a centrally
planned and systematically executed campaign of genocide perpetrated
by the Ottoman Turkish Government. The tragedy is widely viewed as
the first genocide of the 20th century, the ongoing denial of which
has opened the door to similar atrocities including the Holocaust the
Cambodian and Rwandan genocides.

The youth summit is one of a series of local events coordinated by the
Armenian Genocide Commemorative Committee of Greater Washington DC, a
coalition of local Armenian American organizations formed under the
auspices of the Soorp Khatch Armenian Church. The following is a
schedule of local events that will be taking place to mark the 89th
Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide in the upcoming weeks.

** Friday, April 16th, 8:00pm – Armenian Genocide Madagh and
Commemorative Program, organized by the Greater Washington Homenetmen
Chapter. Soorp Khatch Church Community, 4906 Flint Drive, Bethesda
MD.

** Friday, April 23rd 3:30PM-6: 30PM – `We will Always Remember’:
Armenian Genocide Demonstration in front of the Turkish Ambassadors
Residence Sheridan Circle (at 23rd and Massachusetts Avenue, NW)

** Friday, April 23rd 6: 30PM – A wreath-laying ceremony and prayer
organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Armenia. Embassy of the
Republic of Armenia, 2225 R Street, NW, Washington, DC

** Saturday, April 24th 1:00PM-4:00PM – `Youth Summit for Genocide
Prevention’, McNeir Auditorium, Georgetown University.

** Saturday, April 24th at 7:30PM – Genocide Commemoration program at
Sourp Khatch Armenian Community Center, 4906 Flint Drive, Bethesda,
MD.

** Sunday, April 25th at 10:30 AM Genocide Requiem Service and
Madagh. Soorp Khatch Church, 4906 Flint Drive, Bethesda, MD.

** Wednesday, April 28th 5:30 PM – 10th Annual Armenian Genocide
Observance on Capitol Hill, sponsored by the Armenian National
Committee of America. Cannon House Office Building, Cannon Caucus
Room (435). For more information, contact the ANCA at (202) 775-1918.

For those attending the commemorative programs from outside the
Greater Washington, DC area, hotel accommodations have been made at
the Marriott Crystal Gateway, 1700 Jefferson Davis, Hwy, Arlington, VA
22202. For information or reservations, please contact: Arsineh
Khachikian at 202.775.1918.

#####

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Armenian FM criticizes U.S. position on latest Yerevan events

15.04.2004 09:41:00 GMT
Armenian FM criticizes U.S. position on latest Yerevan events

Yerevan. (Interfax) – Armenian Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanian has
criticized the U.S. Department of State’s report addressing the latest
developments in Yerevan.

In its report, the U.S. Department of State expressed concern over the
situation in Armenia and called on the country’s authorities and opposition
to hold negotiations to resolve the problem.

“The United States has forgotten to condemn the opposition’s calls for a
coup in the republic. If not for this failure, I myself would have signed
off on the U.S. Department of State’s report. At the same time, it is these
opposition calls that can be viewed as the underlying reason for what has
been happening in Armenia over the past few days,” Oskanian told a
roundtable session in Yerevan on Wednesday.

Tensions are running high today between Armenia’s authorities and
opposition, which is demanding that President Robert Kocharian resign.
Earlier, the opposition started to boycott parliamentary sessions, calling
for a referendum to assess the population’s trust in the authorities, and
staged a series of rallies. On the night on April 13, police broke up an
opposition rally outside the presidential residence, and all unauthorized
large-scale assemblies have been banned in Yerevan.

Oskanian blamed “both the opposition and the republic’s authorities for what
has happened.”

“We have already reached a certain level of the country’s democratic
development, but the biggest challenge – to make democratic processes in
Armenia irreversible – still lies ahead. And, we need the opposition’s
constructive assistance to succeed in this task,” the foreign minister said.

He expressed hope that “Armenia will manage to prove to the international
community that the political situation in the republic is still stable.”

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress