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Monday, May 17, 2021

106th Anniversary of Armenian Genocide Formally Recognized by President Biden

Catherine Tsounis
Catherine Tsounis
Contributing Editor The copyrights for these articles are owned by the Hellenic News of America. They may not be redistributed without the permission of the owner. The opinions expressed by our authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hellenic News of America and its representatives.

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April 24th, 2021, is a historic day. President Joe Biden formally recognized the Armenian genocide of 1915 on the 106th Anniversary. St. Illuminator’s Armenian Apostolic Cathedral commemorated the 106th Anniversary in New York City with a church service, presided by His Eminence Archbishop Anoushavan, prelate, and Rev. Fr. Vahan Douyoumdjian. At 1 pm. a march from the church site at 221 E. 27 St., New York to Washington Square Park at 5 Ave., Waverly Pl., 4th St. and Dougal St., was held in peace with an effective police presence. Commemoration services were held from 2-4:30 p, m. Greek Americans attended to show their support. President of the Pan Macedonian Association USA Dimitri Filippidis, representing Hellas FM Radio, spoke saying “the road is now open to the recognition of the Pontian, Asia Minor and Thrace genocide.
The official White House statement by President Joe Biden on Armenian Remembrance Day states: “Each year on this day, we remember the lives of all those who died in the Ottoman-era Armenian genocide and recommit ourselves to preventing such an atrocity from ever again occurring. Beginning on April 24, 1915, with the arrest of Armenian intellectuals and community leaders in Constantinople by Ottoman authorities, one and a half million Armenians were deported, massacred, or marched to their deaths in a campaign of extermination. We honor the victims of the Meds Yeghern so that the horrors of what happened are never lost to history. And we remember so that we remain ever-vigilant against the corrosive influence of hate in all its forms…..The American people honor all those Armenians who perished in the genocide that began 106 years ago today.”1
“This Saturday, April 24, the Armenian Church commemorates the Feast of the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide, who were canonized on April 23, 2015, on the centennial of the Genocide.,” explained the St. Illuminator’s Armenian Apostolic Cathedral site. “The Martyrs, like all other saints, are invoked to intercede for us; and the Church no longer conducts requiem services (hokehankeesd) for the martyrs of the Armenian Genocide. All feast days in the church are celebrated by singing hymns (sharagans) and reading selections from the Holy Scriptures. The Canon of Hymns dedicated to the Holy Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide was written and composed in 1990 by Archbishop Zareh Aznavorian, of blessed memory, a member of the Brotherhood of the Holy See of Cilicia.”2

St. Illuminator’s Armenian Apostolic Cathedral commemorated the 106th Anniversary in New York City with a church service

Speaker Dimitri Filippidis, a survivor of Covid-19 twice, gave a passionate speech. Here are some memorable statements: “Looking for justice of victims of genocide. As of today, genocide is not hidden but everywhere in this country. If you do not pay for a crime, it will be repeated one more time. Enough is enough! It is a glorious day today. Justice was served in the United States of America. We thank President Biden what he did today, six years later from what should have been done.” Journalist Filippidis spent weeks televising the Artsakh war, making it alive to his listeners. He believes it is his patriotic duty to support his “Brothers, the Armenians”.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic says on its website that “Greece was one of the first countries to recognize Armenia upon independence (September 21, 1991). There is a Greek embassy in Yerevan (since 1993) and an Armenian embassy in Athens. Relations between Greece and Armenia are very strong, both emotionally and historically, due to the co-existence of Greeks and Armenians during the Byzantine period, and under the Ottoman Empire.
Greece is one of the countries that officially recognize the genocide of the Armenians by the Ottomans in 1915. Due to Greece’s long-standing cultural influence (up until the 5th century AD, the Armenians were using the Greek alphabet), Armenian interest in Greek culture is strong. The Greek language is being taught as a second foreign language at the University of Yerevan, at the Brasov Linguistic University, the Theological School, and Military Academy.3
Henry Morgenthau the ambassador to the Ottoman Empire during the First World War. Morgenthau was one of the most prominent Americans who spoke about the Armenian Genocide[1] of which he stated, “I am firmly convinced that this is the greatest crime of the ages”.4

“We are our mountains”, Stepanakert, Artsakh symbolizing the connection between the Artsakh land and the Armenian people.

“What he {Morgenthau” called “race murder” was underway. On July 10, 1915, he cabled Washington with a description of the Turkish campaign: “Persecution of Armenians assuming unprecedented proportions. Reports from widely scattered districts indicate systematic attempt to uproot peaceful Armenian populations and through arbitrary arrests, terrible tortures, wholesale expulsions, and deportations from one end of the Empire to the other accompanied by frequent instances of rape, pillage, and murder, turning into a massacre, to bring destruction and destitution on them. These measures are not in response to popular or fanatical demand but are purely arbitrary and directed from Constantinople in the name of military necessity, often in districts where no military operations are likely to take place….Morgenthau continued to work tirelessly to aid the Armenians, including an offer to raise money to relocate survivors to the United States. Yet he remained frustrated that he had not achieved more. “My failure to stop the destruction of the Armenians had made Turkey, for me a place of horror—I had reached the end of my resources.5
Only military force by Western Powers could have stopped the Destruction of a Race. On the 106th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, US President Joe Biden recognized the 1.5 million destruction of Armenian lives. Greek Americans were at the march and commemoration ceremony in Washington Square Park, NY. They express their solidarity with their fellow Orthodox compatriots, who are part of their Byzantine and Modern Greek civilizations.
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