Talysh minority conference opens in Armenia

AP Worldstream
May 20, 2005

A conference devoted to studying the Talysh minority opened in the
Armenian resort of Tsakhkadzor on Friday.

The minority, estimated to number 80,000 people, lives in Azerbaijan
and Iran.

Twelve experts were to address the conference, including two
specialists from Azerbaijan who have been living in exile in
Moscow. Vardan Voskanian, one of the conference organizers, said
Armenia was chosen as the venue because it has a well developed
specialty of eastern studies.

Azerbaijan, Armenia's rival, has accused the Talysh of separatism,
and Azerbaijani media have reacted negatively to the prospect of
the conference.