Zatik consiglia:
Iniziativa Culturale:




In the mid 1990’s, when RAA/USA implemented its strategic plan to establish an office in Yerevan and start the centralization and digitization of the RAA archives, it became committed to cover all administrative and technology related management expenses, including salaries and equipment costs. Additionally, RAA/USA
strove to raise funds for traditional publication of RAA books and special projects.
RAA/USA was confident in providing this commitment and financial support, since it believed there would be individuals who would understand the importance and worthiness of RAA’s mission, and assist fulfill RAA’s financial commitment and obligations.
To that effect, we were fortunate to establish a pool of individuals—called the RAA Guardians and Supporters— who agreed to provide moral and financial support.
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur and Lila Seredians are two such contributors and RAA Guardians. For the last several
years, the Seredians have continuously and generously supported RAA’s activities, often checking-in to see
whether there are any pending projects that require an infuse of funds, or whether they can assist further promote or expand RAA activities.
In appreciation of their generosity and support, we took this opportunity to speak with Mr. Seredian regarding his and his wife’s noteworthy thirst to help our organization and share their views with our supporters.
Q. How and when did you first become acquainted with RAA and its activities?
A. I was introduced to RAA through Vano Haritunians (RAA Board Member) and liked the ideas presented by him regarding preservation of our [Armenian] heritage, especially because of my father being from Van. I attended the lectures of Dr. Armen Haghnazarian with Lila, and both of us felt it was a worthy cause.
Q. How do you rate RAA’s mission and where do you see its importance?
A. If there is one organization that I value not only for its mission but also its manpower, it is RAA. Documenting and preserving our past heritage to be available to future generations and to the world, is vital to our survival as a nation. I see a great advantage that RAA has such a strong presence in Armenia providing inspiration to the people of Armenia.
Q. Given your familiarity with RAA’s activities, do you see any shortcomings?
A. The promotional and marketing tools that are being used are not enough for presentation of RAA to the public. It is vital that the whole Armenian Diaspora becomes familiar with the RAA mission and its accomplishments. Having a few parties here and there will not be enough to familiarize the Diaspora with the worthy cause of RAA. Tools must be developed to reach a much larger audience. The effort to communicate with SOAR is a wonderful example to be repeated with other organizations in the future.
Q. Why have you decided to provide your continuous moral and financial support to RAA and its activities?
A. The non-political aspect of RAA is very appealing to me.
We cannot accomplish anything if we get entangled in politics. I believe in the cause, I believe in the integrity and the intelligence of the people involved both here and in Armenia.
Q. What are your suggestions and comments for expanding and improving RAA’s activities?
A. I suggest having more regular public meetings where the activities of Samvel Karapetian, the Executive Director of RAA/Armenia can be presented in a simple, small but effective manner. Large social parties do not generate the kind of interest that RAA needs or raise the funds needed to sustain and expand its activities. To expand the RAA’s base there must be contact with different groups of Armenians (including American Armenians) which in turn will benefit the RAA’s standing and increase of its knowledge within other groups and communities.
Q. What is your advice for sustainability and continuation of RAA?
A. RAA could expand its branches in other states and countries with large Armenian population, thus expanding its base of finances.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Seredians for their generous support and guardianship toward RAA activities.
Jora Manoucherian President, RAA/USA
Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
On November 13, 2010, Mr. Samvel Karapetian delivered a lecture to military units of the Armed Forces of Armenia situated in Goris City of Siunik Region. The lecture, which was greatly received, was devoted to the Aghbak District of Western Armenia, and was accompanied with a showing of the “Aghbak” film.
In December 2010, RAA entered a collaborative effort with the House-Museum of prominent Armenian writer Hovhannes Tumanyan (Yerevan). RAA has agreed to undertake the digitization of Mr. Tumanyan’s personal collection, which includes 200 glass negatives, and military maps of the tsarist authorities. A small part of this collection comprises photographs of monuments taken between 1901 and 1923 mainly in Ani and Javakhk. Built in 1969, the House-Museum is a two-storey building housing materials related to
Tumanyan’s life and work including his personal items, documents, manuscripts, sketches, and publications in more than 40 languages. Thanks to having undertaken this work, RAA has exponentially enriched its digital archives with additional photographs of Armenian historical sites and monuments.
(Pictures taken by Hovhannes Tumanyan)
Recognizing the importance of cultural preservation via documentation, the Republic of Armenia previously
implemented a Monument Documentation Program. In December 2010, RAA assisted in this endeavor by
completing 450 surveys focusing on Armenian monuments located within historical Armenia. Among other things, RAA provided the following requested data for each monument:
geographical coordinates, the historic and architectural value of the monument, architectural description, and brief historical information relating to it.
RAA EXHIBITS AT THE ART-EXPO 2011 On February 11 and 12, 2011, RAA participated in, exhibiting
several RAA publications, the 2011 ART EXPO held in Yerevan, Armenia. The ART-EXPO is an annual exhibition that serves as a platform to elevate awareness of Armenian cultural and historical heritage. Among those present at the ART-EXPO expressing appreciation of RAA’s work and dedication to cultural preservation, were several dignitaries from the Republic of Armenia, including President Serzh Sargsyan, Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan, and Minister of Culture Hasmik Poghosyan.
RAA NEWSLETTER • PAGE 3 AUGUST 2011 \ Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
In February 2011, RAA’s research team, led by Mr. Samvel Karapetian, Director of RAA Armenia, embarked on a month long journey to India—home to one of the most important and oldest communities of the Armenian Diaspora. The team’s research in the cities of Delhi, Agra, Madras, Gwalior, Allahabad, Calcutta, Hayderabad, Cochin, Mumbai and Surat Cities, culminated in approximately 5,000 photographs added to the RAA archives. While in Calcutta on February 17, Mr. Karapetian was invited to the Humanitarian Seminary of Calcutta, to deliver a lecture on Armenian monuments of Artsakh. During their journey, researchers visited and documented the following notable sites:
• In Calcutta, Holy Trinity, Gregory the Enlightener, and the Holy Nazareth Armenian churches, the latter being the Mother Church among local Armenians.
• In Agra, an Armenian mortuary chapel housing the oldest Armenian cross-stone in India, which dates to 1611 (photo attached).
• In Madras, Sourb Thomas Church, used today by Armenian Catholics, preserves a number of Armenian
inscriptions dating back to 1707.
• In Madras, the research team members also found a three-language inscription, in Persian, Armenian, English, on a bridge built by Khoja (merchant) Petros in the late 17th century.
• In Surat, the city’s cemetery that dates to the 17th century. The cemetery, which is preserved under the
auspices of the state, is divided into Armenian and German sections.
Through their research, Mr. Karapetian and his team were pleased to determine that Armenian cultural heritage in India is in good state of preservation. RAA extends special thanks to Father Khoren Hovhannissian, Head of the Humanitarian Seminary of Calcutta and pastor to Armenians in India, and Ara Hakobian, Armenian Ambassador to India, provided RAA with much support.
Holy Nazareth in Calcutta St.Gregory in Calcutta Surat Cemetery Agra Cemetery RESEARCH IN ARTSAKH
In March 2011, a group of RAA members including architect Ashot Hakobian, orientologist Raffi Kortoshian, camera operator Anush Hambardzumian, and Mr. Samvel Karapetian, carried out studies of several Armenian historical monuments located throughout the Martakert District of the Republic of Artsakh. The studies focused on the Yerits Mankants Monastery, and the regions of Jraberd, Akanaberd, Haterk, Hin Chapar Hakarakaberd, Vaghuhas, Tleni, Karmir Vank, and Khatravank. This group not only documented measurements of monuments, but photographed such monuments for showcasing at the Homeland Cognizance
RAA NEWSLETTER • PAGE 4 AUGUST 2011 \ Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
(Continued from Page 3 – Research In Artsakh)
Program of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Armenia, for which Mr. Karapetian prepared and delivered a lecture in front of over 1,000 soldiers. Mr. Karapetian’s Lecture was accompanied with a documentary exposing the destruction of Jugha Cemetery, and a film on Aghbak District of Western Armenia (both produced by RAA).
On May 5, 2011, RAA Founding Director, the late Dr. Armen Haghnazarian, would have celebrated his 70th birthday. In his commemoration, RAA members together with Dr.Haghnazarian’s wife and fellow RAA supporter Mrs. Margrit Haghnazarian, visited Dr. Haghnazarian’s gravesite in Artashavan Village, Republic of Armenia, where they planted flowers. Dr. Haghnazarian’s dedication and contribution to Armenian cultural heritage continues to live on through the work of RAA.
RAA EXHIBIT AT THE HOVHANNES TUMANYAN HOUSE MUSEUM, YEREVAN On May 10, 2011, RAA opened an exhibition at the House Museum of prominent Armenian writer Hovhannes Tumanyan. The exhibition, which exposed the barbarities committed against Armenian cultural monuments in Azerbaijan, ran through May 20th. The 17 stands placed in the museum hall bear photographs of only a small number of the Armenian monuments actually found in Azerbaijan, many of which have been destroyed during the last 20 years.
While information on the present-day condition of Armenian monuments under Azeri control is scarce because of a ban on Armenians in Azerbaijan, morsels of information reach RAA from RAA supporters such as Stephen Sim and Frederick Berlemont. Messrs. Sim and Berlemont each succeeded in crossing the Azeri border to obtain information on Armenian monuments, in defiance of Azerbaijani authorities. RAA is indebted to these researchers and attribute some of the photographs shown at the exhibition to their sacrifice.
Present at the exhibit was Mrs. Zabela, grand-daughter of Priest Mesrop Ter-Grigoriants, whose three-floor home is considered an architectural find, and was one of the most remarkable edifices in the Getashen Village of Northern Artsakh, now under Azeri occupation. The 84-year-old stood with tears in her eyes and unable to tear herself away, gazing at the photograph of her paternal home, which was burnt in the days of the occupation of Getashen in May 1991. In her hand was a photograph of her home, in-tact, which Mrs.
Zabela later gifted to the RAA archives.
During a speech opening the exhibition, Mr. Samvel Karapetian expressed his gratitude to the Ministry of Culture for sponsoring the exhibition and condemned the impunity of Azerbaijan, expressing hope that finally the Armenian authorities and international community would take necessary steps to make Azerbaijan shoulder responsibility for the acts of vandalism committed against Armenian cultural
heritage.Mr. Samvel Karapetian during his opening speech at the Hovhannes Tumanyan House Museum
\ Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
(Continued from Page 4 – RAA Exhibit At The Hovhannes
Tumanyan House Museum, Yerevan)
Consultants of the Article: Pargev Frankian, Ashot Hakobian, and Samvel Karapetian
Cultural and civilization roots are embodied within architectural structures and archaeological sites. With the advent of technology1, these structures and sites are now being preserved for future generations through 3D digitization and modeling, the use of which has increased significantly over the past few years.
In addition to preservation, digital reconstruction serves several goals including: (1) documenting historic buildings,
sites, and objects for reconstruction or restoration in the event of their destruction for example by fire, earthquake, flood, war, or erosion; (2) creating education resources for history and culture students and researchers; (3) visualizing scenes from viewpoints that are impossible in the real world due to size or surrounding objects; (4) interact with objects without risk of damage; and (5) virtual tourism and virtual museum2.
Present-day Republic of Armenia represents only approximately 10% (about 14% together with the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh) of Historical Armenia; the remaining 90% was devoured by and divided among the adjacent countries of Turkey, Azerbaijan (including the Autonomous Republic of Nakhijevan which is within its governance), Georgia and Iran.
Because of this, most Armenian historical monuments are found outside the borders of today’s Armenia, and have been and continue to be subject to premeditated destruction (with the exception of monuments found in Iran). This known fact prompted RAA to undertake the digital reconstruction of Armenian historical monuments, digitally restoring deteriorated, unmaintained, ruined, or otherwise destroyed
monuments to their original form and glory—at least in computerized form.
Work in this field began in 2003. Since then, about 25 Armenian monuments, mostly situated in Western Armenia, have been reconstructed through the application of a number of programs: Modeling (Maxon Cinema 4D, 3D Studio Max, AutoCad); Texturing (Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator; Rendering- Maxon Cinema 4D (VRay), 3D Studio Max (VRay)); Post Processing ((composing, colour correction) -
Adobe Photoshop). These 25 reconstructed monuments include: Varag Monastery (9 km east of the city of Van, 5th to 19th centuries) with the churches of the Holy Virgin, Holy Cross, Holy Zion, St. Hovhannes and St. Sopia; the monastic complex of Khetzkonk (Tekor Village, Kars Region, 9th to 13th centuries) with the churches of the Holy Virgin, St.
Sargis, Sourb Karapet (Holy Precursor) and St. Gregory the Enlightener; Holy Trinity Church of Tekor (Kars Region, 5th century); Narek Monastery (Vaspurakan Province of Historical Armenia, 9th to 19th centuries), St. Gevorg Monastery of Lim Island in Lake Van, St. Hovhan Monastery (613 to 619) of Bagrevand in Bagavan, as well as a number of churches from the medieval Armenian capital of Ani (Kars Region):
Gagkashen (10th century), Holy Saviour (11th century), Tigran Honents (1215), Koosanats (Holy Virgins, 10th to 11th centuries), Hovvi (Shepherd’s, 10th to 11th centuries), Bazmakhoran (Multi-Apse, 10th to 11th centuries), and Gtich Monastery (Hadrut District, 1241 to 1248), which is located in the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh. Since their digital reconstruction, many of these monuments have ceased to exist. As such, digital restoration has proven vital for the presentation and preservation of Armenia historical monuments for generations to come.
To reconstruct a monument, specialists utilize a variety of archival and modern data3, if available, including
photographs, measurements, and historical records providing descriptions of the given monument. For instance, one available source regarding Gagkashen Church of Ani indicates that Gagkashen is a near duplicate of Zvartnots Church. As such, having slight differences but identical composition, materials from Zvartnots can be used, at least in part, for the reconstruction of Gagkashen.
Picture of Mrs. Zabela’s three-story home in the Getashen Village of Northern Artsakh, now under Azeri occupation.
Pictured on the left is Mrs. Zabela, grand-daughter of Priest Mesrop Ter-Grigoriants; On the right is Priest Mesrop Ter- Grigoriants.
RAA NEWSLETTER • PAGE 6 AUGUST 2011 \ Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
(Continued from Page 5 – Digital Reconstruction of Monuments)
Fortunately, RAA’s reconstruction efforts are advancing thanks to its vastly rich archives that contain more than 200,000 images accumulated throughout over 40 years of fieldwork and research in different libraries and archives.
The time required to complete the digital reconstruction of a monument depends on: (i) the complexity of the monument’s architectural details, (ii) the photorealistic rendering4, and (iii) the existence and availability of data and materials, including photographs and measurements, relating to it5. The reconstruction of each heritage site takes anywhere from a month to two months and a half. Certain factors may affect the reconstruction time including new data found during the work process, which may lead to the change of alreadyreconstructed parts. In addition, the richer the monument is in decorative patterns the longer its reconstruction process.
Indeed, the same reconstruction approach cannot be applied to monuments of different compositions. For instance, St. Stepanos and Holy Virgin Churches of Khetzkonk have the same composition and as such, available data and materials regarding one can be helpful for the reconstruction of the other. In contrast, Hovvi (Shepherd's) Church of Ani, a multiapse structure, is unmatched in its composition and as such, a detailed study of its features and peculiarities is necessary in order to complete its reconstruction.
The more information available regarding a monument, the more genuine its reconstruction will be. Unfortunately, monuments are generally found in the following state: (a) destroyed without any traces left; there is only a photograph(s) and with or without its plan6; (b) partly destroyed, but there exist the measurements of its plan and sections which become the basis for its reconstruction; (c) dilapidated, but there exist exhaustive measurements which have come down to us thanks to different meritorious researchers7.
From among researchers to whom Armenians are indebted for photographic heritage of Armenian monuments8, special mention should be made of Doctor of Architecture Armen Hakhnazarian, the late Founding Director of RAA, and French doctor Jean Michel Thierry, thanks to whom hundreds of architectural monuments were studied and recorded—in many cases, for the first time. Today, the important mission of preservation through recordation for reconstruction is being carried on by the research team of RAA headed by monumentologist Samvel Karapetian. The digital reconstruction of monuments is carried out within the close collaboration of RAA Architect Ashot Hakobian9, and computer specialist Pargev Frankian10, under the immediate supervision of Mr. Karapetian. From an architectural standpoint, especially where the details and symmetry of different parts of the monument are concerned, this collaboration is very fruitful and leads to the thorough reconstruction of the monument with no details omitted.
Where there are only incomplete graphical drawings at hand, and the monument cannot be shown with all its facades and sections, the architect helps the computer specialist to restore the omitted details and regain the original symmetry of the monument.
RAA Foundation continues the digital reconstruction of monuments, and in the future, its archives will be enriched with more reconstructed monuments which regain life in this way.
1. Reconstruction technology includes laser scanning techniques, 3D modeling software, image-based-modeling techniques, computer power, and virtual reality. The first attempts of reproducing structures were the creation of models or small-scale reconstructions of buildings such as the wooden model of Zvartnots Church (7th century, Republic of Armenia), or the gypsum model of the entire city of the medieval Armenian city of Ani, which are kept in the History Museum of Armenia (Yerevan).
2. See
3. Paramount to digital reconstruction are the archival measurements of such prominent architects as T.
Toramanian, Nicholas Marr, Jean-Michel Thierry, Paolo Cuneo and Dr. Armen Hakhnazarian, as well as
monumentologist Samvel Karapetian.
4. Rendering is the process of generating an image from a model(s) by means of computer programs. While simple rendering of an image may be completed in several minutes, photorealistic renderings may take several hours depending on, among other things, the calculation of light and shade, and the environmental attributes of the given monument.
5. In the process of reconstruction, of great importance is the color of the building material used in the construction of the given monument, which is selected on the basis of the available color photographs, if there are any. In cases when the monument no longer exists, and there are no photographs of it, specialists turn to descriptions found in different travelling notes and topographic works.
6. This is true of St. Hovhannes Church of Bagrevand, which was reconstructed only on the basis of its plan
measurement and archive photographs.
7. T. Toramanian’s private collection provides us with complete measurements of Ani Cathedral, Gagkashen
Church of Ani, thanks to which, their digital reconstruction becomes fully possible.
8. Among these are Paolo Cuneo, Tommaso Breccia Fratadocchi, Hovhannes Marzpanian and others).
9. Architect Ashot Hakobian has been working for RAA since 2007, and possesses the following computer skills:
ArchiCAD, AutoCAD, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator.
10. Computer graphic animator Pargev Frankian has been working for RAA since 2002, and posses the following Computer skills: Maxon Cinema 4D, 3D Studio max, AutoCAD, BouJou (3D Match moving), Poser (3D Character animation), E-on Vue (3D environments) Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe After FX, Adobe Premier.
RAA NEWSLETTER • PAGE 7 AUGUST 2011 \ Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA
C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
St. Sargis, Salmast
On April 22, 2011, RAA exhibited and presented at the National Library of Armenia, all RAA works published
between 2009 and 2011. These are: Armenia illustrated album in three languages (Armenian, Russian & English), 2009; The Bridges of Artsakh in three languages (Armenian, Russian & English), 2009; Travelling Notes by Archpriest Yeghishe Geghamiants (Haykuny), in Armenian, 2010;
Collected Memoirs, in Armenian, 2011; The Wonders of Artsakh, in Armenian and English, 2011; The Armenian Monuments of the Islamic Architecture of Artsakh, in Armenian and English, 2011. Vardzk No. 3 is dedicated to the Armenian architectural monuments of Azerbaijan and exposes the attitude of the Azerbaijani authorities towards them.
In November 2010, RAA published the 13th volume of RAAScientific Research Series, entitled Travelling Notes by Archpriest Yeghishe Geghamiants (Haykuny). This issue is related to the history, lapidary heritage, folk-lore, and ethnography of Artsakh Province of Armenia Major as of the late 1880s.
In November 2010, RAA’s film department completed production of a video by director: Tiran Karapetian (music by Aydin Davudi) on deciphering Armenian encoded writings. In addition, RAA published another issue of the Vardzk (Duty of Soul)—a journal devoted to the state of Armenian historical monuments in Western Armenia.
In December 2010, RAA published two booklets entitled The Wonders of Artsakh and The Islamic Monuments of the Armenian Architecture of Artsakh.
In March 2011, RAA published, in Armenian, the 14th volume of RAA Scientific Research Series, entitled Collected Memoirs. The publication includes memoirs of 16 survivors of the Armenian Genocide of 1915.
In January 2011, RAA’S film department completed production of a documentary entitled “Documentary on
Mardastan (Khoshab) District of Western Armenia,” which contains statistical and historical information on this part of historical Armenia.
On June 11, 2011 RAA members embarked on a month longresearch trip with representatives of Artak Manukian Museum, Teheran, to Zarevand, Her, Artaz and Parspatunik Districts of Historical Armenia—present-day Salmast, Khoy, Maku (Western Atropatene) and Gharadagh (Eastern Atropatene) Districts of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The research team, comprising two architects, a historian, an Orientologist, a specialist in lapidary inscriptions, a photographer, a cameraman and an interpreter, visited over 100 places in these districts where they took measurements and photographs of about 6,000 monuments, and recorded 4,000 epitaphs together with other inscriptions.
RAA publishes an annual calendar. The 2011 calendar is illustrated with images of Sourb Khach (Holy Cross) Church of Aghtamar Island of Lake Van, Western Armenia. To obtain the calendar please contact by email.
Important Announcement Starting next issue, RAA Newsletter is going to be
sent to members electronically to minimize the cost of distribution. To that effect if you are interested in receiving this informational newsletter to be aware of RAA activities, please send an email to and add “Subscribe” in the subject line. Thank you.
Research on Armenian Architecture, Inc. RAA / USA C/O Jora Manoucherian, 9632 Saluda Avenue, Tujunga, California 91042 USA
Tel: (818) 469-1186 ▪ Fax: (818) 688-3827
Congress Should Call on Turkey to Return Christian Churches and Respect Religious Freedom The “Return of Churches” re solution (H.Res.306) is a religious freedom measure introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressmen Ed Royce (R-CA) and Howard Berman (D-CA), calling upon the government of Turkey honor its international obligations to return confiscated Christian church properties and fully respect the rights of Christians to practice their faith in freedom.
This bipartisan effort to press Turkey to safeguard the Christian community and heritage within its present-day borders reflects America’s enduring commitment to religious freedom, as so powerfully reaffirmed in the enactment by Congress of the International Religious Freedom Act, and represented, on the international stage, by America’s leadership in supporting the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
With the assistance of the Research on Armenian Architecture and their extensive archives, the Armenian National Committee of America was able to illustrate the extent of the Turkish Government’s destruction of Armenian Churches over the past 100 years to Congressional legislators. Through the website and the distribution of RAA’s “Duty of Soul” publications, with their moving “before and after” photos, Members of Congress understood the reasons behind the Armenian American community’s commitment to ensure the protection and return of these historic icons and sites.
Within a month of its introduction, the House Foreign Affairs Committee adopted a similar amendment by a resounding vote of 23-1, authored by Representatives Berman and David Cicilline (D-RI) . Increased Congressional scrutiny, coupled with successive cases presented by the Greek, Armenian and Aramean communities in the European Court of Human Rights, prompted Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Erdogan to announce the return of a small percentage of Christian and Jewish community owned properties to their rightful owners. The decision was one of pure political expediency, with the properties representing less than 1% of churches, cemeteries, orphanages, etc. confiscated since the Genocide of 1915.
Continued Congressional action, including passage of H.Res.306, is urgently needed to confront - and eventually reverse - decades of official destruction of Church properties, desecration of holy sites, discrimination against Christian communities, and denial of the rights of Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians, Chaldeans, Pontians, Arameans (Syriacs), and others to practice their faith in freedom.
Its adoption would add the powerful voice of the U.S. Congress - and the full moral authority of the American people - to the international defense of religious freedom for the Christian nations residing within the borders of present-day Turkey.
Armenian Americans are encouraged to visit the Armenian National Committee of America website – – contact their legislators in support of H.Res.306 – the Return of Churches resolution – and learn more about the Turkish government’s devastating legacy of destruction of its Christian heritage

Annette Melikian

Il sito è curato dall'Arch. Vahé Vartanian e dal Dott. Enzo Mainardi;
© Zatik - Powered by Akmé S.r.l.