Yerkir Media TV Report on Diyarbakir Church

Sat, Oct 30 2010
By:Armenin Weekly

YEREVAN (A.W.) - Yerkir Media, our sister media organization in Yerevan,
recently aired a report on the Diyarbakir Sourp Giragos Church
renovation. The report (in Armenian), was prepared after a recent
visit by the Yerkir Media TV crew to Diyarbakir.

The Armenian Weekly had reported earlier that speaking at a reception
held on the occasion of the closing of the dome of the Sourp Giragos
Armenian Church in Diyarbakir, the mayor of the greater Diyarbakir
municipality Osman Baydemir told the Armenians gathered there: `This
city is yours as much as it is mine. You have as much a claim to this
city as I do.'

The ongoing renovation of the church in the heavily Kurdish populated
area is being performed by the Armenian Patriarchate and the
municipality of Diyarbakir.

The reception on Oct. 23 was attended by Archbishop Aram Atesyan of
the Armenian Patriarchate of Istanbul, local leaders, and members of
the Istanbul Armenian community.

Unlike the Holy Cross Church in Van, which the Turkish government
turned into a museum and did not transfer to the Armenian
Patriarchate, the Sourp Giragos Church is being renovated jointly by
the patriarchate and the Diyarbakir municipality and will be run by
the patriarchate.

The reconstruction of the church, an architectural marvel and the
largest church in the entire Middle East, is expected to cost more
than $2.5 million and be completed by next year.

The Turkish press has thus far failed to provide appropriate (if any)
coverage of the reception, although it was quick to glorify every step
of the renovation and `museum-ization' of the Sourp Khatch Church in
Van. Reports about the reception are available, however, on Kurdish
news sites.

One commentator told the Armenian Weekly that the relative silence of
the Turkish press is `because the language used in this entire
exchange between Atesyan and Baydemir [during the reception] runs
counter to the dominant discourse' in Turkey regarding the Armenians.

Click here to watch the video of the exchange between Atesyan and Baydemir.




From: A. Papazian