ASBAREZ Online [03-11-2004]


1) Uruguay Parliament Recognizes Armenian Genocide
2) Tuncboyaciyan’s Armenian Navy Band Performs in Yerevan
3) Iraq Interim Constitution Guarantees Armenian Instruction
4) Rwanda Invites Aram I to Commemorate 10th Anniversary of its Genocide
5) MKR Parliament Turns Down State Property Privatization Program
6) Sako, Joseph Krikorian to Perform at Hye Hopes Event for Ghapan
7) Assemblymember Carol Liu and ANC Pasadena Chapter Announce Human Rights
Teacher Training Workshop for Pasadena Public Schools

1) Uruguay Parliament Recognizes Armenian Genocide

YEREVAN (Yerkir)–The lower chamber of Uruguay’s parliament approved a bill on
March 10, which indirectly recognizes the Armenian Genocide. The bill calls
April 24 to be “the commemoration day of Armenians martyred in 1915,” and
obligates the state owned media to “cover those events” on that day.
There is no reference to “genocide” in the wording of the bill, though
parliament speeches in favor of the bill did not avoid calling the
genocide, a
“genocide.” The resolution will become a law with the president’s signature.
In 2000, Uruguay’s Senate unanimously passed a resolution marking “April 24 a
national day of remembrance for the Armenian Genocide.”
In 1965, the Armenian National Committee of Uruguay advanced the passage
of an
Armenian Genocide resolution in Uruguay’s parliament–to mark the first time a
country officially recognized the genocide of Armenians.
At the time, the author of that resolution Senator Dr. Alberto Sid, said that
the bill aimed to register Uruguay’s official position on the Armenian
as a crime against humanity.
Interestingly, the world’s first April 24 demonstration also took place in
Uruguay, in 1964.

2) Tuncboyaciyan’s Armenian Navy Band Performs in Yerevan

YEREVAN (Combined Sources)–The Armenian Navy Band, founded by the
percussionist and vocalist Arto Tuncboyaciyan, is in Armenia to perform at the
March 13 opening of Avant-garde Folk Music Club, and to present their latest
CD, The Voice of Our Life.
The Armenian Navy Band’s compositions are all original and written by
Tuncboyaciyan, who insists the pieces “have the sound of my life.” This music
is founded on Armenian and Anatolian musical traditions and infused with jazz
and contemporary culture. Arto’s compositions embrace sounds from generations
past as well as present; he calls it “avant-garde folk.” As such, the Armenian
Navy Band represents the synthesis of Arto’s musical journey and life
experiences. “When people accept me as who I am, I feel like the World is my
country,” says Tuncboyaciyan.
Born to an Armenian family, Arto’s life began in Turkey, where at a very
age he became a well-known studio musician. He was the youngest in his family
which lived near Istanbul, and was exposed to diverse cultures from an early
age. Growing up as a member of Turkey’s beleaguered Armenian community meant
that Arto and others like him were unable to explore their own cultural
heritage. Although Arto’s father was a shoemaker, his brother, Onno, became a
bass player and composer, and Arto soon followed in his footsteps.
He immigrated to the United States in 1981, and has since performed and
recorded with an array of outstanding jazz and world music artists, including
popular Greek artists such as Eleftheria Arvanitaki, as well as the Spanish
guitarist Gerardo Nuñez, and Joe Zawinul, Al Di Meola, Oregon, Joe Lovano,
Wayne Shorter, Don Cherry, Arthur Blythe, Omar Faruk Tekbliek, Naná
and many others. The sudden loss of Arto’s brother Onno in a plane accident in
1996 gave birth to two albums created by Arto with Ara Dinkjian, recorded in
Greece. Arto has also recorded with Dinkjian as a member of Night Ark.
The Armenian Navy Band is composed of twelve of Armenia’s finest contemporary
musicians, ranging in age from 20 to 45. The instruments include the
traditionalduduk, zurna, kemanche, kanunand the contemporarytrombone, alto
tenor, soprano sax, trumpet, bass, drums, keyboard, and piano. Together with
the unique vocals and percussion and sazabo of Arto, the band’s sound is a
of aural journey from the past to the future. Arto himself says: “The project
was born in 1998 after the meeting in Yerevan with young Armenian musicians
coming from different music experiences (ethnic and contemporary Armenian
The band’s first European tour in February/March 2000 was successfully
received in Italy, Germany, Austria, and Spain. Their next tour, later that
year, included Sardinia, France, Brussels, and Holland, ending with a stop in
Istanbul for the recording of the album “New Apricot” under the Turkish label
“Imaj Muzik,” followed by another brief tour in March 2001 and an extended
European Summer/Fall tour through to November 2001.

3) Iraq Interim Constitution Guarantees Armenian Instruction


Article 9
Official Languages

The Arabic language and the Kurdish language are the two official
languages of
Iraq. The right of Iraqis to educate their children in their mother tongue,
such as Turcoman, Syriac, or Armenian, in government educational institutions
in accordance with educational guidelines, or in any other language in private
educational institutions, shall be guaranteed. The scope of the term “official
language” and the means of applying the provisions of this Article shall be
defined by law and shall include:
1. Publication of the official gazette, in the two languages;
2. Speech and expression in official settings, such as the National Assembly,
the Council of Ministers, courts, and official conferences, in either of the
two languages;
3. Recognition and publication of official documents and correspondence in
two languages;
4. Opening schools that teach in the two languages, in accordance with
educational guidelines;
5. Use of both languages in any other settings enjoined by the principle of
equality (such as bank notes, passports, and stamps);
6. Use of both languages in the federal institutions and agencies in the
Kurdistan region.

4) Rwanda Invites Aram I to Commemorate 10th Anniversary of its Genocide

ANTELIAS–The government of Rwanda has invited His Holiness Catholicos Aram I
to participate in the 10th anniversary commemoration of the Rwandan genocide.
The event, which will take place in the capital city Kigali, will be held
In a letter inviting Catholicos Aram I, foreign minister of Rwanda Dr.
Murigande writes, “You stood by the people of Rwanda as they struggled to deal
with the terrible consequences of genocide. Join us to reflect on how to
prevent and banish genocide for ever through active universal solidarity.”
Catholicos Aram I will address an international conference on “Genocides in
the 20th century and lessons to humanity,” as well as an ecumenical worship to
be held at the Kigali stadium, and will meet the president of Rwanda and
According to the Catholicosate of the Holy See of Cilicia, His Holiness will
present the issue of genocide, referring to the Armenian Genocide as the first
Genocide of the 20th century, and the Rwandan genocide as the last.
A high ranking delegation will accompany the Armenian Catholicos, including
the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Dr. Sam Kobia,
director of the Department on Africa affairs Dr. Andre Karamagali, the General
Secretary of All Africa Council of Churches Bishop Dandala, WCC Church
Relations Director Teny Pirri-Simoniana, and the Director of the
Catholicosate’s Information and communication Department Rev. Krikor
His Holiness will also travel to Nairobi, Kenya to present a public
lecture on
“The challenges facing the ecumenical movement and Africa,” and to meet with
the president and church leaders, visit the headquarters of all Africa Council
of Churches, and present an ecumenical workshop.

5) MKR Parliament Turns Down State Property Privatization Program

YEREVAN (Yerkir)–The parliament of Mountainous Karabagh Republic rejected a
proposed national privatization program, despite the backing of parliament’s
majority Democratic Liberal Party.
It was stricken down when parliament’s Armenian Revolutionary Federation
faction member Artur Mosiyan demanded a detailed report be submitted on the
implementation of the current privatization program during the past years,
including data on the number of new jobs created as a result of the
program, as
well as information on reprimands of officials not fulfilling their
obligations. Another ARF faction member Levon Hayriyan, said that Stepanakert
residents–unlike all others from former Soviet countries–have not received
any benefits from the privatization.
Since the proposed program was rejected, the law already in place adopted a
few years ago, will continue to be in force.

6) Sako, Joseph Krikorian to Perform at Hye Hopes Event for Ghapan

GLENDALEGlendale public high schools’ Armenian students have organized an
evening of music and dance to support Glendale’s sister city of Ghapan in
Armenia. The event, “Hye Hopes,” will take place on Friday evening, March 12,
at the Glendale Civic Auditorium, and will feature entertainment by popular
artists Sako, Joseph Krikorian, and DJ Alfred Nazarian. Appetizers and
refreshments will be served.
Becoming aware of the dire needs of the schools in Ghapan, and because
Glendale and Ghapan recently became sister cities, the Glendale students
decided to host a fundraising event to provide much needed funds to fellow
When members of an official Glendale city delegation returned from Ghapan in
October 2003, the students heard first hand accounts about the difficulties of
Ghapan students, and the debilitated state of their learning environments.
Following the event, the students will work with the Glendale Ghapan Sister
City Association (GGSCA), a “Hye Hopes” sponsor, to determine a specific
improvement project to fund.
The Glendale Ghapan Sister City Association, a 501(c)3 non-profit
organization, was created to foster a mutually beneficial sister city
relationship between Glendale and Ghapan. GGSCA works closely with the city of
Glendale to collect equipment and resources that would benefit the city of
Ghapan and to create opportunities that would benefit the city of Glendale.
organization also raises money from private contributors in order to fund
improvement projects in Ghapan’s k-12 schools, post-graduate schools, parks,
hospitals, community centers, and other public infrastructure.
“Hye Hopes” will be held from 7 pm to 11 pm at 1401 North Verdugo Road in
Glendale. Tickets ($10) may be purchased at Paradise Pastry, Pizza Man, and at
the door. For further information about “Hye Hopes,” visit
<; For further information about the
Glendale Ghapan Sister City Association, email [email protected].

7) Assemblymember Carol Liu and ANC Pasadena Chapter Announce Human Rights
Teacher Training Workshop for Pasadena Public Schools

Pasadena–The first Teacher Training Workshop on the State’s approved Human
Rights and Genocide Curriculum will be held Friday, March 12, at the Pasadena
Tournament of Roses House. Sponsored by Assemblymember Carol Liu (D-La Cañada
Flintridge), and the Pasadena Armenian National Committee (ANC), the workshop
will provide history teachers with lesson plans and materials concerning human
and civil rights violations. Teachers will also receive training on how to
incorporate these lessons into the classroom curricula.
“In this era of increasing violence and intolerance, young people need to
understand what atrocities arise from hate and prejudice,” Liu said.
Participants will be invited to join an informal seminar to discuss and
analyze the California State Department of Education’s model curriculum for
teaching about human rights and genocide, including the Armenian Genocide.
State law requires schools to provide a learning framework that includes
material concerning civil rights, human rights violations, genocide, slavery,
and the Holocaust.
“Despite the severe budget cuts our schools are facing, this project is
evidence that we can provide our students with quality education through a
collaborative effort between the community and Pasadena Unified School
District”, said Shahan Stepanian, Chairman of the Pasadena Chapter of the
“We appreciate Assemblymember Liu’s leadership and support in this joint
The workshop will cover topics including the histories of the Native
Americans, European Jews, Cambodians, Rwandan Tutsis, and Bosnian Muslims. In
addition, participants will hear about the Transatlantic Slave Trade, the
Famine of the Ukraine, the Rape of Nanking, and the Chinese agricultural
disaster that occurred under Mao Tse-Tung’s “Cultural Revolution.”
Keynote speaker Dr. Richard Hovannisian, Armenian Education Foundation
Chairholder in Modern Armenian History at UCLA, will provide the historical
context of the 1915 Armenian Genocide. Other participants include Facing
History and Ourselves, a non-profit organization that works with teachers and
students to understand the past and recognize the need for participation and
responsible decision making. Samuel Kadorian, a Genocide survivor born in
will share his experience and thoughts. In addition, the workshop will include
the Exhibit of Armenian Genocide Survivor Portraits and their Stories by The
Genocide Project. Portraits will be placed throughout the room for
to view.
“I would also like to recognize The Southern California Gas Company, and
Southern Bell Communications, who has graciously agreed to serve as the main
corporate sponsor for the workshop,” said Assemblymember Liu.
The workshop begins at 8:30 am and will run until 3:30 pm. People interested
in learning more about the Teacher Training Workshop or in supporting the
should contact Diana Mangioglu at Assemblymember Liu’s District

All subscription inquiries and changes must be made through the proper carrier
and not Asbarez Online. ASBAREZ ONLINE does not transmit address changes and
subscription requests.
(c) 2004 ASBAREZ ONLINE. All Rights Reserved.

ASBAREZ provides this news service to ARMENIAN NEWS NETWORK members for
academic research or personal use only and may not be reproduced in or through
mass media outlets.

Books — The World

The World is a co-production of the BBC World Service, PRI and WGBH Boston.

Books — The World
Thusady, March 11, 2004

The Burning Tigris: The Armenian Genocide and America’s Response
Author: Peter Balakian
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0060198400

Available from Public Broadcasting One

The poet and memoirist Peter Balakian has written a passionate,
well-researched history of the first modern genocide and the various
American reactions to it. `Who today, after all, speaks of the
annihilation of the Armenians?’ Hitler asked, setting in motion the
Final Solution for the Jews in Europe. Balakian makes clear the
continuing costs of the Turkish government’s attempts to erase the
memory of this tragedy-which we must nevertheless remember. As the
Turkish poet Nazim Hikmet said to himself in a famous poem:

The Armenian citizen has not forgiven the slaughter of his father in
the Kurdish mountains. But he loves you, because you also won’t
forgivethose who blackened the name of the Turkish people.

What this history reveals is that there can be no forgiveness without
a full accounting of the crime-a reckoning the American government can
andshould demand.

French ambassador named Georgian foreign minister

French ambassador named Georgian foreign minister

TBILISI, Georgia (Reuters) – Georgia’s President Mikhail Saakashvili
picked France’s ambassador in Tbilisi to be his foreign minister
Thursday, saying he had cleared the appointment with French President
Jacques Chirac.

Saakashvili said 51-year-old Salome Zurabishvili, a descendant of 19th
century Georgian writer Niko Nikoladze, was a diplomat of
international standing whose family had emigrated to France early in
the 20th century.

He told a news conference he believed the appointment was
“unprecedented in the history of diplomacy.” Diplomats are normally
expected to remain loyal to their own country and not take up jobs in
foreign governments.

He said he would grant her Georgian citizenship in addition to her
French passport, a dual status the constitution allowed in special

Zurabishvili has worked in the United States, the European Union and
NATO and headed the international department of France’s national
security general secretariat until taking up her post in Georgia.

After the fall of communism, many people whose families had migrated
to Western Europe and the United States returned to their Eastern
European roots. A U.S. lawyer, for instance, served for a short time
as foreign minister in Transcaucasian neighbor Armenia in the 1990s.

Saakashvili himself is a U.S.-trained lawyer who led a bloodless coup
last November that brought down veteran leader Eduard Shevardnadze, a
former Soviet foreign minister.

Saakashvili won a landslide election victory in January and promised
to integrate the republic into NATO, the European Union and the
European mainstream.

03/11/04 14:14 ET

Armenia: Women Do Time in “Model Prison”

Armenia: Women Do Time in “Model Prison”

Almost half the inmates of the country’s only women’s prison are serving
sentences for murder.

By Karine Ter-Saakian in Abovian (CRS No. 222, 11-Mar-04)

Just outside Yerevan, there is a small zoo whose inmates include a llama, a
peacock and a couple of pythons. What’s unusual about it is that it’s part
of a woman’s prison, the only one in Armenia.

The authorities claim the Abovian camp is a model prison and that its 70
inmates have some of the best conditions in the former Soviet Union. Human
rights activists agree that things are a lot better than they used to be,
but say much more needs to be done for conditions to meet international

An IWPR contributor who visited the prison camp last week found it a strange
place, with a large aquarium as well as a zoo, and an area where pigs and
rabbits are raised for food.

But perhaps the most extraordinary aspect of the prison is that nearly half
the women are in for murder rather than the more usual lesser crimes.

Part of the explanation may be that women are very rarely imprisoned in
Armenia, and the country’s new criminal code stipulates that they should not
serve more than 15 years. But those convicted of grave crimes such as murder
are not eligible for early release under amnesty.

Voski is a 78-year-old woman serving a sentence for murder. “I was born in
Azerbaijan and became a refugee. My husband used to abuse me so I went and
killed him,” she told IWPR. Another inmate recently killed her

In the prison it’s widely believed that you can tell who is serving a murder
sentences because they are the most beautiful.

“Women are more cruel,” said deputy prison governor Rostom Mnatsakanian, a
man. “There is one woman here who killed her husband and cut him into 90
pieces, into tiny bits. And when they asked her why, she said she was fed up
with him.”

The prisoners are held in large rooms lined with beds rather than small
cells. The atmosphere gloomy and with so many people around, privacy is
almost non-existent.

Prisoners told IWPR that life has improved at Abovian since the camp was
transferred from the jurisdiction of the interior ministry to the justice

Prison officials say that inmates have the right to work and earn a small
wage, and that they also have computer classes and use of the internet,
access to a psychologist and a health clinic, and regular visits by Armenian

“We have here what many people outside don’t even have – hot water, enough
food, and the right to see our children,” said Arevik, a pleasant young
woman who is another of those serving time for murder. Her sister is doing
time in the prison, and she also has her young daughter who was born here.

“We understand that nothing can replace freedom, but we are still trying to
provide them with a human existence,” said Mnatsakanian. “Thank God, there
is much more order in the [prison] camps in Armenia than in other
Commonwealth of Independent States countries.”

A few days after IWPR’s visit, the prison marked International Women’s Day –
March 8 – with a gift of pearls for all the women from Armenian church
leader Catholicos Garegin II and a concert, and children were allowed to
visit their mothers for a couple of days.

However, Avetik Ishkhanian, head of Armenia’s Helsinki Committee, said that
the Armenian prisons including this one did not yet measure up to
international standards.

“It’s true, it’s become somewhat better now, but the inmates are still
deprived of newspapers, books and any contact with the outside world. They
can only use the telephone for 20 minutes a month,” he said.

Mikael Danielian, who heads another human rights group, the Helsinki
Association, agreed that overall, conditions have improved at Abovian, but
he noted,”There is no decent room here for meetings. And when they complain
about this to the management, they say there is no money. It’s interesting,
there’s money for an aquarium and greenhouses, but not for normal rooms.”

Danielian continued, “The furniture is old, the cells don’t get any air,
there are 10 to 15 people in one room, and in the [nearby] children’s
[detention] camp, all 68 inmates sleep in one room.

“They [the women] have hot water, but bath day is only once a week, so
standards of sanitation are terrible. And why do they have computers if they
can’t use them?”

Each cell also has an informer who listens to everything the others say –
they won’t say who she is or point her out, but simply call her “mother”.

Everyone agrees, though, that life at Abovian is much better than in the men
‘s prison at Kosh, where tuberculosis is rife and general living conditions
are much worse.

“We always hope that those who have served their sentence won’t come back
here, but it doesn’t always work that way,” said deputy governor
Mnatasakanian. “Around a quarter of the prisoners come back. Maybe they’ve
got used to it here.”

Karine Ter-Saakian is a journalist with the Respublika Armenii newspaper in

Disappearing Horses of Karabakh

Disappearing Horses of Karabakh
Dilbaz (top) and Karabakh horse at the Baku hippodrome.

Azerbaijanis breeders are struggling to keep alive a centuries-old horse
rearing tradition.

By Kamil Piriev and Samira Husseinova in Lenberan (CRS No. 222, 11-Mar-04)

The green pastures of this village 360 kilometres west of Baku used to be
home to cattle and sheep. Now a group of stables and barns dominates the
landscape and herds of Karabakh horses graze across it, guarded by a
herdsman and a dog.

The village of Lenberan has been transformed by the arrival here of the
staff of what used to be the stud farm of Aghdam, the Azerbaijani city now
occupied by the Armenians and located on the other side of the Nagorny
Karabakh ceasefire line.

The famous Karabakh horses have suffered from the conflict, too. There are
now just 130 of them, compared with some 400 twenty years ago.

Azerbaijan’s first stud farm was built near Aghdam in 1949 to rear the
valuable Karabakh breed of horse. The farm was hard hit by the 1991-94
conflict. The remaining horses were evacuated to Baku before Armenian troops
captured Aghdam in 1993.

It was only four years later that a proper new farm was built for the horses
at Lenberan. However both the location and the farm leave much to be
desired. The lowland climate is not ideal for the horses, and the farm is
rather cramped.

“Karabakh horses were bred in the mountains for centuries,” farm manager
Maarif Husseinov told IWPR. “That is why, apart from their beauty, these
horses are valued for their endurance and ability to travel narrow mountain
paths. Lenberan is not good for them. The climate is too humid and the grass
is different here.”

The beautiful golden-brown Karabakh horse, believed to be of very ancient
pedigree, is of medium height with a small head and strong muscles. Over
many centuries the Muslim khans of the Karabakh highlands took great pride
in breeding them.

Traditionally the breed has been prized for its hardiness and its loyalty to
its owners. Because of its size and temperament it has always been popular
with woman riders. Its fame persisted into modern times and in 1956, Queen
Elizabeth of Britain received a Karabakh stallion named Zaman as a gift from
the Soviet government, along with an Akhal Tekke horse from Turkmenistan.

There are some 65,000 horses in Azerbaijan, but only about 1,000 of them are
thoroughbred. As well as the relocated Aghdam stud farm, there are two farms
at Agstafa and one at Sheki which breed the grey Dilbaz, another famous
Azerbaijani breed.

But all the stud farms have fallen on hard times, because although they are
officially run by the state, in reality they were left to fend for
themselves years ago. Selling just a few horses a year, they can barely
afford to buy food for the horses and pay their employees.

This worries the experts. “Unless conditions improve, the Karabakh and
Dilbaz may lose their pedigree status and become diluted in a few years,”
warned Handam Rajabli, deputy director of the pedigree breeding department
at the agriculture ministry.

“Professional horse breeding in Azerbaijan suffers most from the lack of
customer interest in our local breeds,” complained Rajabli. “Many private
customers these days prefer the English thoroughbred and the Turkmen Akkal
Tekke to the Karabakh and Dilbaz.”

Azerbaijan’s racing and breeding industries continue to suffer from a
presidential ban on betting on horses that followed a big casino scandal in
Baku five years ago. As a result racing lost popularity and racecourses and
stud farms lost revenues. To maintain the Baku racecourse complex, the
management has had to lease part of the premises to private businesses.

Another major problem is the continuing export ban on Azerbaijani horses
because of their failure to meet international identification standards. As
an exportable commodity, horses need to come with all the necessary
vaccinations properly documented, which is not the case with Azerbaijan’s

This year, the agriculture ministry came up with a plan to improve breeding
conditions for thoroughbred Azerbaijani horses and asked the government to
foot the bill. The plan calls for around 400,000 dollars to be allocated to
the horse breeding industry and the ban on horserace betting to be lifted.
The government is still considering its response.

But some enthusiasts think there is no time to be lost. Yashar Guluzade, an
entrepreneur, has been breeding the Karabakh for seven years. On the 50
hectares of land he owns outside Baku, he keeps 28 Karabakh horses and two

Yashar owes his love of horses to his father Alihussein, but never dreamed
of owning his own stable. Then in 1997 he saw Senat, a young Karabakh stud
horse, at the Baku racecourse and was so impressed by its beauty that he
decided to buy it. After that he became so fascinated with local breeds that
he travelled from village to village in search of pedigree animals.

Guluzade, 39, is worried that the Karabakh and Dilbaz horses may be on the
road to extinction. “I’m an amateur, but even I can see how the thoroughbred
population has been dwindling year by year,” he said. “Unless the government
and real experts take action, the purity of these breeds will not last much

Experts at the ministry, while conceding that action must be taken, are more
optimistic about the future. “I find it alarming that the government does
not provide enough cash to stud farms and line breeders,” said Rajabli. “But
to talk about thoroughbred Karabakh and Dilbaz being close to extinction
would be premature. These breeds have survived for centuries; they cannot
just vanish into thin air.”

Kamil Piriev reports for Radio France Internationale and Samira Husseinova
is a freelance journalist; both are based in Baku.

To see photographs of two horses look at the web version of this story on
our Caucasus website,

“We were friends with Tigran Petrossian” Vasilevich

Azat Artsakh, Republic of Nagorno Karabakh
March 10 2004


– Boris Vasilevich, I want to greet you in the name of the staff of
the newspaper “Azat Artsakh” and the people of Artsakh. We are glad
to see you in Karabakh. What did you know about Karabakh before
coming here?
– Thank you for your warm returns and words. I am happy that I could
visit your highlands, breathe its clean air, meet with the people
living on this land. I think I will have time to get a closer
acquaintance with all this and evaluate what I have seen. I have
heard about Karabakh, I knew about the military actions in the
1990’s. You know war is tragedy. Let there only be peace in this

– In your opinion, to what extent has sport been transformed into
business today?
– I would say this is a process that started long ago. Sport is more
and more acquiring a commercial character. I cannot say for sure but
I think this also refers to chess. This tournament, however, has
nothing to do with it, it is free from being commercialized. And we
all are content with this. I should say that the tournaments for the
championship of the world are more of commercial nature. These have
always been connected with huge sums even before. In any way, I am
not the specialist to give an exact answer to the question.

– Are there differences in sport of your times and today?
– Again we will come to the problem of commercialization. Take
tennis, for example. Thirty years ago money had no role in this
sport, whereas today huge sums are circulated there. The same is with
any new sport. But this is not the case with the Olympic games.
Fortunately the prizes for world records have been increased. For
example, track and field athletics. Today, if I am not mistaken, the
winner of the 100-m sprint receives 53 thousand dollars. Although
this also may be considered little.

– What do you think, are there unfair games in chess?
– From my personal experience I cannot mention any. It is difficult
to say what happens with others. This should be known for sure. Many
people think there are unfair games. But I do not know why and how.

– Who was Tigran Petrossian for you? Were you just rivals or were you
in friendly relationships?
– Unfortunately the extracts we watched in the hall were very short.
Still in 1963 it became known that Tigran Petrossian bears a gigantic
chess power in himself. At that time it was not so easy for
Botvinnik. Although Botvinnik was not the chess-player number 1 in
the world. He was a king for a long time but he did not reign. Today
I recall the years 1966-69. I have lots of memories connected with
Tigran Petrossian. Despite the competition for the title of champion
we were good friends. The talent of Tigran Petrossian was unique.
With his sharp mind he saw a lot on the chessboard. He was very
strong in defence and felt the attack of his rival very quickly. It
happened that during the games with him the moment for him was a
matter of life and death. Whereas in such moments I was flying in the
clouds… I should say I was young then and had a devil-may-care
attitude. My main problem was to take a good sleep before the game.
It turns out Tigran Petrossian lived a difficult life. You know it
was not easy to be the champion of the world, the hero if his nation
during such a difficult period. At the same time Tigran Petrossian
was the editor-in-chief of the leading chess magazine published then.
That is to say, in this aspect too he was an important person in the
world of chess. Nevertheless, Petrossian was a very modest person. He
had a phenomenal unique talent, a fantastic sense of humour which the
other world champions did not have.

– Your returns to the people of Artsakh.
– Let them fight only on the chessboard. And nowhere else. This is
the most important.

Int’l chess tournament opened in Stepanakert

Azat Artsakh, Republic of Nagorno Karabakh
March 10 2004


FIDE has announced 2004 the year of the ninth champion of the world
Tigran Petrossian. On this occasion the NKR authorities and the RA
Academy of Chess organized the international chess tournament devoted
to the 75th anniversary of Tigran Petrossian. The tournament was
opened on March 8 in Stepanakert. The participants met with the NKR
president Arkady Ghukassian, prime minister Anoushavan Danielian,
members of government, members of the National Assembly and others.
The participants of the tournament are headed by the tenth champion
of the world Boris Spassky. In the name of the NKR authorities the
NKR minister of education, culture and sport greeted the participants
and wished them success. The minister characterized the tournament of
this level as an unprecedented event in the sport life of Artsakh.
“This is the case when we prove that Artsakh tries to achieve new
successes in sport, whereas the problem that the country is not
recognized hinders the development of sport. However, the tournament
filled us with the hope that Artsakh is able to achieve heights and
organize new and other similar tournaments.” The participants of the
ceremony watched the film about Tigran Petrossian. Then the message
of the chairman of FIDE Kirsan Ilyumzhinov was read. The tenth
champion of the world greeted the guests and thanked the organizers
of the tournament characterizing it as a truly big event in the world
of chess. “This championship woke joyful memories in my mind
connected with the events of 1966, 1969 in the world of chess. Today
the spirit of Tigran Petrossian is felt in this hall…” Once the rival
of Tigran Petrossian, today speaks with great enthusiasm about him,
telling about their games for the chess crown. The grand masters
participating in the tournament represent seven countries.


Unprecedented storm in NK

Azat Artsakh, Republic of Nagorno Karabakh
March 10 2004


Recently the heavy storm in the territory of the republic damaged
settlements in the southern and central part of the country, as well
as in Stepanakert and especially in Shoushi. The roofs of houses were
damaged, old trees were broken. Electric power supply and telephone
were disrupted. According to the NKR meteorological service, the
speed of the wind was in average 30-35 m/s and during strong gusts it
reached 40-45 m/s.


Grandmaster expects Karabakh tournament to become “tradition”

Mediamax news agency, Yerevan, in English
11 Mar 04

Grandmaster expects Karabakh tournament to become “tradition”


Ex-world chess champion Boris Spasskiy has refrained from commenting
on the negative reaction by Azerbaijan to the holding of an
international chess tournament in Nagornyy Karabakh.

Boris Spasskiy said in an interview with Mediamax: “I still do not
have any clarity concerning this issue.” “Theoretically, I think that
sports must be beyond politics but still this is not so in real
life,” the grandmaster said.

Boris Spasskiy expressed confidence that the international chess
tournament held in Stepanakert Xankandi will become a tradition,
noting that “the president of the Nagornyy Karabakh Republic has also
said this”.

Passage omitted: Spasskiy expected to attend the Karabakh tournament
and Azerbaijan

Written questions to NL Parliament about murder on Armenian officer

Inquiry in Dutch Parliament

Armenian Cultural Association Abovian
Contact: Inge Drost
Weesperstraat 91
2574 VS The Hague
The Netherlands
Phone: +310704490209 or +31624272574
Email: [email protected]

Written questions to Parliament about murder on Armenian officer

The Hague ­ March 8, 2004 – MP Mrs. Huizinga-Heringa (ChristenUnie) has
submitted written questions to the Minister of Foreign Affairs concerning
the Armenian officer, who was gruesomely murdered by an Azeri officer during
a NATO-training in Budapest. In these written questions she asks minister
Bot whether this murder is related to the anti-Armenia mood — that
according to some reports — seems to be growing in Azerbaijan. She also
asks whether similar incidents occur more frequently.

Finally she asks the minister whether he is prepared to follow developments
within the framework of de Dutch Presidency of the European Union and within
the NATO and if necessary take action. The Dutch Presidency of EU will be in
the second half of 2004.