ARF'S STATEMENT OF DEMANDS FOR JUSTICE FOR THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

Mt. Ararat

MONTEBELLO-The Armenian Revolutionary Federation Western US's 49th
Regional Convention on Sunday unanimously approved a statement
delineating the organization's list of demands for justice on the
eve of the centennial of the Armenian Genocide. Below is the text of
that statement:

Armenian Revolutionary Federation Western U.S.A. Statement Of Demands
For Justice For The Armenian Genocide

WHEREAS, the Armenian Nation was subjected to a systematic and
premeditated Genocide officially beginning on April 24, 1915, at
the hands of the Young Turk Government of the Ottoman Empire from
1915-1919 and continued at the hands of the Kemalist Movement of
Turkey from 1920-1923 whereby over 1.5 million Armenian men, women and
children were slaughtered or marched to their deaths in an effort to
annihilate the Armenian Nation in the First Genocide of modern times,
while thousands of surviving Armenian women and children were forcibly
converted and Islamized, and hundreds of thousands more were subjected
to ethnic cleansing during the period of the modern Republic of Turkey
from 1924-1937; and

WHEREAS, the planning and implementation of Genocide is indisputably
recognized in international law as a Crime Against Humanity and is
punishable as such; and

WHEREAS, this Genocidal Crime Against Humanity has remained unpunished
for nearly one hundred years, as the Government of Turkey is allowed
with impunity to distort history and to deny the Genocide and its
consequences perpetrated both by its Ottoman predecessor and its own
predecessor regimes despite international recognition of the Armenian
Genocide by 23 countries, including the United States of America; and

WHEREAS, Armenians were the indigenous and native inhabitants of their
ancestral homeland for thousands of years preceding the Armenian
Genocide as evidenced by the ruins of hundreds of ancient Armenian
churches, monasteries, cemeteries and other readily identifiable
religious and cultural structures, sites and antiquities still
remaining on such land as proof of their ongoing presence there up
until the Armenian Genocide; and

WHEREAS, the ancestral homeland of the Armenian People, and especially
the six historically Armenian regions of Van, Erzerum, Kharpert,
Bitlis, Dikranagerd-Diyarbakir, and Sepastia-Sivas, all within
the current borders of the Republic of Turkey, have been stripped
of their native inhabitants by virtue of the Armenian Genocide,
except for thousands of Islamized or hidden Armenians who have been
subjected to silent oppression, while some of whom have recently begun
to acknowledge their true ethnic identities and should be encouraged
to return to their roots; and

WHEREAS, the ancestral Homeland of the Armenian People continues to be
illegally occupied by the Republic of Turkey which makes every attempt
to erase any proof of the historic Armenian presence on such land; and

WHEREAS, the Armenian Nation survived the Genocide despite the attempt
by Ottoman Turkey and the modern Republic of Turkey to exterminate
it; and

WHEREAS, the survival of the Armenian Nation from the horrors of
Genocide was due in significant part to American and international
efforts spearheaded by Near East Relief, an organization created
and sanctioned in 1916 by the United States Congress which rescued
over 132,000 Armenian orphans and hundreds of thousands of Armenian
refugees who went on to survive and thrive outside of their ancestral
homeland all over the world and specifically within the United States
of America; and

WHEREAS, the First Independent Republic of Armenia was internationally
recognized in the aftermath of the Armenian Genocide through the
Treaty of Sevres; and

WHEREAS, Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States of America,
issued his final and binding Arbitral Award on November 22, 1920,
restoring some of the territorial rights of the Armenian Nation taken
from it by the Government of the Ottoman Empire as a consequence of
the Armenian Genocide, by redrawing international borders to include
the provinces of Van, Erzerum, Bitlis, and Trabzon with access to
the Black Sea within the Republic of Armenia; and

WHEREAS, despite its legally binding terms, the Wilsonian Arbitral
Award was never enforced, and the Turkish occupation of the lands which
legally belong to Armenia continues in blatant violation thereof to
date; and

WHEREAS, the Armenian People, individually and collectively, have
been deprived of their real and personal property, culture and life
on their ancestral Homeland for nearly a century since the Armenian
Genocide; and

WHEREAS, the Armenian Revolutionary Federation of the Western United
States consists mostly of members who are the direct descendants of
those survivors of the Armenian Genocide who eventually immigrated
to the United States of America and who, as U.S. citizens, and as the
largest organized community of the Armenian Diaspora, have the right
to demand justice in the name of the Armenian Nation, including but
not limited to the implementation of the Wilsonian Arbitral Award,
and petitioning the U.S. Government at local, State and Federal levels
to do so; and

WHEREAS, the Government of Turkey continues its predecessor
governments' campaign of Genocide and attempted destruction of the
Armenian Nation with impunity by: (a) illegally occupying Western
Armenia; (b) illegally blockading the western border of the current
second independent Republic of Armenia; (c) aiding and abetting
the Republic of Azerbaijan, its co-conspirator and accomplice,
in its illegal blockade of the eastern border of the current second
independent Republic of Armenia; (d) aiding and abetting the Republic
of Azerbaijan, its co-conspirator and accomplice, in its illegal
blockade of the current independent Republic of Nagorno Karabakh
(Artsakh); (e) aiding and abetting the Republic of Azerbaijan, its
co-conspirator and accomplice, in its attempt to erase any proof of the
historical presence of the Armenian Nation and its rightful claims to
Nakhichevan, including but not limited to the destruction with impunity
of the ancient Armenian cemetery at Djulfa by the Azeri military; (f)
aiding and abetting the Republic of Azerbaijan, its co-conspirator
and accomplice, in perpetrating and then engaging in a campaign of
denial and distortion of massacres perpetrated against the indigenous
Armenian populations of Baku, Sumgait and Kirovabad; (g) aiding and
abetting radicalized militant action and ethnic cleansing against the
indigenous Armenian population of Kessab and other parts of Syria;
(h) failing to bring to justice the perpetrators of the murder of
Hrant Dink, a crime linked to the highest levels of the Turkish State;
(i) continuing its silent oppression and intimidation of hidden and
Islamized Armenians, most of whom fear revealing their true identities
or practicing religious freedom under threat of retaliation; and (j)
generally taking any and all steps within its power to eradicate any
proof of the historical presence and valid claims of the Armenian
Nation as a consequence of the Genocide perpetrated against it; and

WHEREAS, the Peace & Democracy Party (BDP), the current leading
party of the Kurdish population of Turkey, should be acknowledged and
encouraged for its formal adoption as a part of its party platform an
acknowledgement and apology for the role of the Kurdish population in
the Armenian Genocide, a plan to try to restore some of the property
rights of the Armenian Nation, and a call upon the Government of
Turkey to acknowledge the Armenian Genocide and offer restitution; and

WHEREAS, the municipal government of the City of Diyarbakir
(Dikranagerd) in Turkey, democratically controlled by the Kurdish Peace
& Democracy Party, has in fact recently taken concrete steps toward
reconciliation by restoring the Armenian Sourp Giragos Cathedral,
erecting a monument to victims of Genocide, allowing and encouraging
Armenian language and religion classes to be held for Islamized or
hidden Armenians, erecting a highway welcome sign into the City in
Armenian, and other such measures for which it should be commended
and encouraged; and

WHEREAS, the current geopolitical conflicts in the Near East and Middle
East have the significant potential of resulting in a redrawing of
international borders in the region which can and should include the
Western Armenian homeland and an independent Kurdistan which would
necessitate dialogue, cooperation and peaceful co-existence based on a
concrete framework for reparations and restitution as outlined herein;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that on the eve of the Centennial
of the Armenian Genocide widely recognized as April 24, 2015, and on
behalf of the descendants of the Armenian Genocide currently living
in the Western United States of America, the Regional Convention of
the Armenian Revolutionary Federation of the Western United States
hereby delineates its Demands for Justice for the Armenian Genocide,
as follows:

1. The Republic of Turkey must unequivocally acknowledge and bear
the consequences of the Armenian Genocide planned and implemented
by the Young Turk Government of the Ottoman Empire from 1915-1919,
continued to be perpetrated by the Kemalist Movement from 1920-1923,
and leading to ethnic cleansing by its own predecessor regime of the
modern Republic of Turkey from 1924-1937.

2. The Republic of Turkey must take prompt and meaningful steps toward
restitution to the Armenian Nation for its Genocidal Crime Against
Humanity, fully acknowledging that any attempt at restitution cannot
possibly restore the Armenian Nation to the quality of national life
and quantity of numbers it would have enjoyed but-for the Genocide
perpetrated against it, but nevertheless showing good faith in
attempting to right the wrongs of history by restoring all rights
taken from the Armenian Nation.

3. Restitution of territorial property rights of the Armenian Nation
shall include the redrawing of international borders on the basis
of the final and binding Arbitral Award of United States President
Woodrow Wilson issued on November 22, 1920, including but not limited
to reunification with the Republic of Armenia of the territories and
provinces of Van, Bitlis, Erzerum and Trabzon to provide unrestricted
access to the Black Sea, as well as the regions of Kars and Ardahan
from within the borders of the First Independent Republic of Armenia,
and including Mount Ararat and its surrounding territories.

4. Complete and unequivocal restoration of territorial property rights
of the Armenian Nation shall include recognition of the independence
and international sovereignty of the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh
(Artsakh) and its current borders.

5. Complete and unequivocal restoration of territorial property rights
of the Armenian Nation shall include Nakhichevan.

6. Complete and unequivocal restoration of the aforementioned property
rights shall include unrestricted and free access and use of all
natural resources and natural and man-made avenues of transportation,
movement and land use.

7. The Republic of Turkey and the Republic of Azerbaijan shall
acknowledge, protect and preserve the hundreds of ancient Armenian
churches, monasteries, cemeteries and other historical and cultural
structures, sites and antiquities within their current and future
borders at their expense and shall refrain from making, encouraging
or tolerating any attempts to destroy, deface, or eradicate them.

8. The Republic of Turkey and the Republic of Azerbaijan shall
immediately remove any and all blockades of Armenia and Artsakh and
allow unrestricted access through their borders and take other such
good faith measures to normalize and cultivate relations amongst
said countries anchored in a full and complete acknowledgement of
the Armenian Genocide, its consequences, and an overall plan for just
reparations as outlined herein.

9. The Republic of Turkey and the Republic of Azerbaijan shall refrain
from taking any military or other action to provoke cross-border
violence or in any way disrupt the peace with the Republic of Armenia
and the Republic of Artsakh.

10. The Republic of Turkey shall restore to the Armenian Patriarchate
of Istanbul, the Holy See of the Great House of Cilicia, and/or any
other entity designated by duly appointed representatives of the
Armenian Nation full and unencumbered property rights and access to
all Armenian churches, monasteries, cemeteries and other religious,
faith-based, historical or cultural structures, sites and antiquities
within its current and future borders, waiving any demands and
exempting them from any past and future property taxes or other such
potential obligations as a part of its measures toward restitution.

11. The Republic of Turkey must make financial restitution to
the descendants of the victims of the Armenian Genocide or their
designated community or organizational representatives and provide
economic assistance to the Republic of Armenia in amounts and manners
to be determined by a duly appointed international tribunal assembled
for this purpose.

12. The Republic of Turkey shall provide unrestricted access to
its judicial system and courts for any descendants of the victims
of the Armenian Genocide, individually and collectively, or any
representative organizations or entities of the Armenian People to
assert real and personal property rights without regard to and with a
complete waiver of any statutes of limitation, theories of abandonment,
adverse possession and/or any laws which existed either during the
Ottoman period and/or post-Ottoman Republic of Turkey, or any other
legal hindrances that may affect the validity of such claims.

13. The Republic of Turkey shall adopt as a part of its national
educational system a full and complete acknowledgement of the Armenian
Genocide and the consequences thereof and shall allow and encourage
open and frank dialogue and research concerning this dark chapter of
its history.

14. The Republic of Turkey shall take all steps necessary to reverse,
prevent and punish any attempts to discriminate against, intimidate,
or harass ethnic Armenians because of their ethnicity, within its
current and future borders and to allow without any hindrance hidden
and/or Islamized Armenians to return to their true identities if
they so wish and to practice religious and ethnic freedom without
restriction or fear of retaliation;

15. The Republic of Turkey shall designate April 24 of each year
as a Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Armenian Genocide and
shall permit and encourage unrestricted commemorative events within
its current and future borders, starting with April 24, 2015, the
Centennial of the Armenian Genocide.

With full and prompt implementation of these aforementioned Demands
for Justice for the Armenian Genocide, the Armenian Nation can
finally move toward a genuine, durable and lasting reconciliation and
peaceful coexistence with the Turkish, Azeri and Kurdish populations
of the region.

June 22, 2014

http://asbarez.com/124379/arfs-statement-of-demands-for-justice-for-the-armenian-genocide/


From: Baghdasarian