The largest circulation Armenian e-magazine, circulates every Thursday. Est. 1999
FIRST SESSION OF STATE COMMISSION CO-ORDINATING THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE HELD IN YEREVAN
Hetq.am - At the first session of the state commission coordinating the events dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, President Serzh Sargsyan proclaimed that "the denial of the 1915 Genocide and disrespect shown to its innocent victims would never be tolerated."
"The issue of the Armenian Genocide is still open ninety-six years after it was perpetrated," President Sargsyan said in his speech. "It's open because it's hard to understand the policy of annihilation a state planned and implemented against its own citizens. It's open, since the consequences of the crime against the Armenian people have not yet been eliminated. It's open because there are deniers of the Armenian Genocide, who spare no effort to distort this black page of the Armenian history. It's open, since Armenian Genocide deniers view this tragedy as a phenomenon that creates inconveniences for them in international politics and do not perceive the necessity to reimburse for it through penitence."
President Sargsyan noted that while the Armenian nation is ready to speak and cooperate with anyone, including its neighbors, it will not come at the price of accommodation regarding the historical facts.
ARF DASHNAKTSOUTIUN, RAMGAVAR AND HUNCHAKIAN PARTY TOP MEN MEET IN YEREVAN
Gibrahayer e-magazine - 31 May - The top men of the traditional political parties met in Yerevan on Monday at the central office of the SD Henchakian party. The meeting was attended by Hrant Markarian of the ARF Dashnaktsoutiun, Setrag Adjemian of the SD Hunchakian party and Mike Kharabian of the Ramgavar Azadagan party.
The leaders had the opportunity to discuss issues of pan-Armenian importance and the possibilities of implementing a pan-Armenian agenda on issues of national importance.
TURKEY CONCERNED OVER
ARMENIANS' SECURITY IN SYRIA
news.am - Relations between Ankara and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have deteriorated recently. Turkey raises a furious voice against al-Assad, who refuses to implement reforms, Sabah newspaper reports citing an unknown source.
According to the newspaper, Turkey is concerned over security of 7% of the population of Syria, particularly Armenians, Kurds and Circassians and if necessary will open the door to them. Over 500,000-1,000,000 refugees will emigrate from Syria to Turkey, if possible.
Independent reporter Robert Fisk wrote in his article that the Turks are prepared to advance well beyond the Syrian border town of Al Qamishli perhaps half way to Deir el-Zour (the old desert killing fields of the 1915 Armenian Holocaust, though speak it not) to provide a safe haven for those fleeing the slaughter in Syrias cities.
93rd ANNIVERSARY OF ARMENIAN INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATED IN CYPRUS
Gibrahyer e-magazine - Nicosia - 28 May - The 93rd anniversary of Armenian independence was commemorated in Nicosia on Friday 27 May at PASYDY Hall, organised by ARF Dashnaktsoutiun and affiliate organisations, with the mood of the participants very much still on a high, five days after the election victory of Armenian MP Vartkes Mahdessian.
The message of the day was delivered by Dr. Hovhannes Taslakian from Lebanon, who ranked the rebirth of the Armenian nation in 1918 as one of the most significant dates in Armenian history.
ARF Dashnaktsoutiun's Cyprus Gomideh representative Hagop Kazandjian's also touched on local politics. His speech can been viewed in its entirety here.
The cultural program included Gore Melian, Hovig Manoushian, Zara Parkhoutarian, backed up by the musical duo of Haig Mahdessian and David Simonian, recitation by Marine Manoushian and dances by SIPAN Dance Ensemble.
The festive mood was carried forward to HMEM / AYMA to a full-house khrakhjank with more than 200 attendants, with the participation of Hovig Manoushian and his band with national and revolutionary songs.
KOHAR Performs Live with the Stars of Armenia in Yerevan ond May 28 2011
KOHARs over 150 orchestra and choir members as well as the 15-member dance ensemble performed in the presence of both Presidents of the Republic of Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. The guest list included the high echelon of Armenias political spectrum, including the Prime Minister & the Speaker of the National Assembly, church representatives headed by Catholicos Karekin II, and many celebrities and artists.
Needless to say, Cyprus-born conductor, Maestro Sebouh Abcarian, engraved the Armenian culture with yet another golden page titled KOHAR. His enchanting baton movements brought onto stage the A-list of Armenias entertainment scene: Hayko, Arsen Safaryan, Shushan Petrosyan, Leyla Saribekyan, André, Aramé, Zaruhi Papaian, Nune Yessayan, Inga & Anush Arshakyans, Roland Gasparyan, and Tata Simonyan.
The culmination of the night was the performance of the song Babenagan Kilikia which has topped the charts in Armenia as the Number 1 song for the past 8 consecutive weeks. Together with KOHAR, the audience joined in the performance waving more than 3000 flags of Kingdom of Cilicia that were distributed by the organizers. A similar enthusiasm from the audience erupted with the song Veraganknir Kilikia which has become KOHARs anthem.
KOHAR is the brainchild of the patron of Armenian culture, Mr. Harout Khatchadourian of Lebanon, who sustains all the activities and concerts of KOHAR, in memory of his late father Aram Khatchadourian, and as a tribute to his mother Mrs. Kohar Khatchadourian.
KOHAR, with this concert, infused an eternal flame in the life of Armenias culture that will be cherished for many years to come
The Central Bank of Armenia President Arthur Javadyan was in Cyprus to attend the IMF/WB Netherlands subgroup meeting in Limassol from May 27 to 29. During the meeting, discussions on issues concerning the "Developments in Europe", "Problems that the World Bank faces", "Green Energy and eternal growth", "Global and regional financial stability: prospects, risks and political problems" took place. Javadyan also met with IMF Executive Director Age Bakker and President of the Greek Central Bank Georgios Papaconstantinou on the sidelines of the visit.
According to the Hurriyet Daily, the Ferikoy Armenian school team in Turkey, won the Mind Lab intellectual contest finals against the best 16 Turkish school teams that participated. The Armenian pupils who won the contest will participate in the 6th International Mind Lab Olympiad to be hosted by Portugal from June 14 to 16, representing Turkey. They will compete with pupils of their age from all over the world.
Members of the Armenian National Committee of Jerusalem met with Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin on May 30 to discuss the Armenian Genocide recognition process. Rivlin said that he wants to convene an annual parliamentary session of the full Knesset to mark the Armenian Genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire. Meanwhile, a source in Israel said that the panel hearing might be delayed for an indefinite period. No time limitation was set for the education committee, so it can just shelve it, the source said.
The ARF Dashnaktsoutiun Parliamentary faction on Wednesday called for the resignation of Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan and his cabinet of Ministers.
ARF Dashnaktsoutiun cited the failure of the governments socio-economic policies, as well as program implemented to combat the global financial crisis as the reason, adding that the government has also failed in curbing price increases and immigration. In response to a simple question from ARF as to why the government has not been able to make strides in these realms, the government quickly pointed the finger to its predecessors. In a vote of 10 to 13 the motion was tabled due to lack of a quorum.
France 2, the French public national television channel, will broadcast The Armenian Genocide of 1915: a tribute to the victims within the framework of Eastern Christians program on June 5, 2011.
Overall 274 convicts were released under the amnesty declared on May 27 on the occasion of 20th anniversary of Armenias independence. The amnesty proposed by Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan was approved by the Armenian parliament on May 26, it provides for release of 496 convicts.
THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE AND CYPRUS (1915-1930)
Setting up a new life on a quiet island across Cilicia
Alexander-Michael Hadjilyra - Between 1915-1923, the Ottomans and the Young Turks systematically and ruthlessly annihilated over 1.500.000 Armenians, who had for centuries been living in Asia Minor and Cilicia, in order to create «a Turkey for the Turks». This article examines the relationship of Cyprus to the Genocide during the period 1915-1930.
Between 1915-1918 and, especially, between 1920-1923, Cyprus widely opened its arms to welcome about 9.000 Armenian refugees, mainly from Adana and Seleucia, but also from the cities of Constantinople, Smyrna, Sis, Marash, Tarsus, Caesarea, Hadjin and Aintab, as well as 41 other towns and villages. These persecuted refugees, who sailed from the harbours of Alexandretta and Mersin with any ship they could find, arrived in all ports of Cyprus, mainly that of Larnaca and, to a lesser degree, Kyrenia and Famagusta, although some did arrive at the ports of distant Paphos and Limassol. But why Cyprus? For some it was pure luck, as with the money they had the steamship could only carry them up to here. Some chose Cyprus because of its proximity to Cilicia, in the hope that sometime they would go back, while others chose Cyprus because of the safety the British administration offered. Most of them eventually made arrangements to settle in other countries. Yet, about 1.300 Armenian refugees eventually stayed and made Cyprus their homeland.
Industrious, cultivated and progressive, they brought new life into the old community of the «deghatsi» (local Armenians) and did not need long to find their feet in hospitable Cyprus and establish themselves as people of the letters, the arts and the sciences, formidable merchants, able entrepreneurs, unsurpassed craftsmen, pioneering professionals (dentists, photographers, printers, shoemakers etc), conscientious civil servants, disciplined policemen etc. The first locksmiths and watchmakers, it was they who introduced the cinema in Cyprus and baklava, gyros, koubes, lahmadjoun, lokmadhes and dried apricots in the Cypriot cuisine, all very popular today.
Some served in World War I, as muleteers and translators, while some participated in the Armenian Legion, which was trained in the Carpass between 1916-1918. Some refugees remained in Larnaca, where there was a small cemetery (1897), an AGBU chapter (1912), Saint Stephens church (1909) - the oldest monument in the Diaspora in memory of the Cilician massacres martyrs - and the Mousheghian School (1909); in 1923, with funding by the Adana Studious Association, a new building was built, whose second floor the benefactor Garabed Melkonian built in 1926. Between 1920-1922 Haig Djizmedjian of Homenetmen formed a small Armenian scouts group, while between 1927-1930 the Armenian school had a small scouts group. Between 1923-1925 the Armenian Bibliophile Association used to publish the weekly literary «Kraser» newspaper.
In 1923 the American Academy teacher Manuel Kassouni founded the Armenophony Association, which between 1926-1929 used to publish the monthly educational «Lousarpi» newspaper. Between 1924-1929, Mardiros Mosditchian used to publish the initially fortnightly and later on weekly political «Arax» newspaper. Later on, in 1931, the Larnaca Armenian Club was established, by individuals affiliated with the Dashnaktsoutiun party. Some refugees headed for Limassol, where by initiative of Archbishop Bedros Saradjian a school was established in 1928 [later on, an AGBU chapter was founded (1936) and the church of Saint George was built (1939)].
Others settled in Famagusta, where with the help of the Presbyterian Mission a school was established in 1927 (later on, in 1936, the Virgin Mary of Ganchvor mediaeval church was granted). Certain refugees formed a small colony in the Amiandos village on Troödos, where since 1904 operated the famous asbestos quarry of Amiandos Mines Corporation, with the support of which a small Armenian kindergarten used to operate between 1928-1948.
A few Armenian refugees inhabited around the famous Magaravank (Monastery of Saint Makarios in Halevga, Pentadhaktylos), where they cultivated its vast land areas and between 1910-1922 a small Armenian school used to operate in the Attalou settlement, in which Archimandrite Krikor Bahlavouni taught, also known as «Topal Vartabed», possibly due to an injury he suffered during his service in the Armenian Legion. In 1926, by donation of the benefactor Garabed Melkonian, the road linking Halevga with the monastery was constructed, which was since used as a camping site and a resort. Also in 1926 the chapel of the monastery was renovated (donation of Dickran Ouzounian, Ashod Aslanian and Garo Balian), while the entire monastery was restored in 1929 (donation of Boghos & Anna Magarian).
However, most Armenian refugees headed for Nicosia, the islands administrative centre, where within the walls lived a small but affluent Armenian community, mainly Turkish-speaking. Within the Victoria street compound, which was the centre of the Armenian-Cypriot microcosm, there was the Prelature (1783-1789), the gothic church of the Virgin Mary (1308), the Vartanants school for boys (1886) and the Shoushanian school for girls (1902).
Later on, in 1932, the Genocide Monument was constructed, the second oldest of its kind in the world, which by an irony of fate it became itself a victim of the Turks in 1963. Outside the walls (Ledra Palace area) there was an ancient cemetery: it is believed that the first burials took place circa 1810, while inside it Saint Pauls chapel was built (1892).
With the arrival of thousands of refugees of the Genocide, soon the place proved to be small and so the last burial was carried out in 1931, when the Ayios Dhometios cemetery started operating. When the Genocide refugees arrived in Nicosia, there was already the Armenian Club (1902) and an AGBU branch (1913), while in 1925 the short-lived Armenian Readers Association was established. Later on, in October 1934, a group of young Armenians, affiliated with the Dashnaktsoutiun party, founded the Armenian Young Mens Association (AYMA), which has ever since been the centre of the social, athletic and cultural life of the Armenian-Cypriot community. Onnig Yazmadjian of Homenetmen formed a group of about 100 Armenian scouts (1925-1930), as well as a football team (1927-1928). In 1930 the «Gaydzak» football team was founded, which in March 1931 it was declared cup holder; despite its success, it shone and burnt out just like a lightning. Between 1922-1923, Haroutiun Arslanian used to publish the handwritten and later on printed literary weekly «Azad Gibrahay» newspaper, while between 1928-1929 Maxoud Maxoudian used to publish the monthly literary «Ovasis» newspaper, initially with Samuel Toumayian and afterwards Dickran Luledjian as its editors-in-chief. In 1921, by wish of the local landowner Artin Bey Melikian, the co-educational Melikian National School was constructed. It was initially considered too big, but only a year later it was full of Armenian children who survived the Genocide.
Later on, in 1938, entrepreneur Dickran Ouzounian constructed the also co-educational Ouzounian National School. Finally, between 1924-1926, after the benevolent and generous donation of tobacco trading brothers Krikor and Garabed Melkonian, the Melkonian Educational Institute was built, in order to provide shelter and education to 500 orphaned Armenian children of the Genocide, who planted the grove in front of the school in memory of their slaughtered relatives. The renowned composer and educator Vahan Bedelian excelled in Nicosia, where he founded the church choir (1921) and the Melikian School band (1922), for which the Sharif of Mecca and self-proclaimed «King of Arabia», Hussein bin Ali, who was exiled in Cyprus at the time, purchased new musical instruments in 1926.
The Armenian Legion The Armenian Legion was an auxiliary unit of the French Army, which consisted of about 4.000 volunteer Armenians from the Middle East, Europe and America. Training commenced in December 1916 at a camp in the Monarga village of the Carpass, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Louis Romieu and the spiritual pastorate of Archbishop Taniel Hagopian, who came from the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem and would celebrate Mass at the small church of the camp. The selection of the «gamavorner» was rather strict. With the completion of the intensive training, in May 1918, the Legion was deployed in Palestine, where on 19 September 1918 it marked the great Victory of Arara. In December 1918 the Legion was stationed in the Cilicia region, where it remained until its dissolution in October 1921.
The Melkonian Educational Institute The Melkonian, a unique and unparalleled achievement, had been the largest Armenian boarding school, a beacon of hope and culture for Armenianism and Armenophony everywhere.
Since 1930 up until its unfair closure in 2005 - after a decision by the AGBU Central Board - 1.828 male and female students graduated from here.
The land of the school was chosen by Garabed Melkonian himself (by tradition, with the criterion that no minaret was visible from there), who on 28/12/1925 assigned the management to the AGBU. Known as «an island within an island», it started as an orphanage (1926-1940) and it turned into a world-renowned secondary school (1934-2005) with a boarding house, an exceptionally rich library (about 30.000 volumes), as well as well-equipped laboratories, which used to organise a plethora of educational, cultural and athletic events and it influenced the Armenian-Cypriot community in numerous ways. It was initially known as the «Armenian Orphanage»: Armenian children were transferred here from the orphanages of Aleppo, Beirut, Constantinople, Corfu, Jerusalem and Sidon. In later years, the Melkonian used to have football and basketball teams (boys), volleyball teams (boys, girls), the historical 77th Cyprus Boy Scouts System (1932-2006), the 9th Cyprus Girl Guides Group (1950-2005) and it used to publish the famous «Ayk» magazine (1937-2006), the oldest Armenian secondary school magazine, as well as the «Tsolk» magazine (1968-1991) and the newspaper and later on magazine «Hayatsk» (1998-2000-2004).
It was somewhat like this that the age-old Armenian-Cypriot community, whose first vestiges are traced in 578 AD, was once more engrafted with new blood. If history teaches us anything about it, it is the continuous alteration: it happened several times during the Byzantine times, the Frankish Era, the Venetian Era, the Ottoman Era and the British Era, but also during the post-Independence period (1960), with the exodus of Armenian-Cypriots to Soviet Armenia («nerkaght» fever), Britain, Canada and America, but also with the coming to Cyprus of Armenians from the Middle East and the Soviet Union. After all, unfortunately, continuous migration constitutes the central meaning of Armenian history in general, which is a blood-stained account of martyrdom and heroic endeavour, characterised by an unwavering and unbroken faith, coloured with incurable optimism
Gibrahayer Calendar Events
Thursday June 2 at 7.30pm: Photo Exhibition - The Bank of Cyprus Cultural Foundation and the Cyprus Photographic Society are organising the "International Exhibition of Digital Photography" at Famagusta Gate, Nicosia, with the winning entries in the categories of "Experimental Photography" and "Photojournalism" dedicated to two photographer legends, George Lanitis and Georges der Parthogh. A selection of significant photographs by the two men will also be exhibited. The exhibition will remain open until June 8. The Politis newspaper's XPONIKO magazine will also dedicate a special edition.
Friday 3 June at 7:30 pm Shnorahantes / Kinetson at Utudjian Hall of the Armenian Prelature on three volumes of Armenian Prelature Archives. 1.- Adanayi vganere yev Sourp Stepanos vgayarane, 2.- Tghtaktsoutiun Sahak II Katoghigosi yev Bedros Arch. Saradjiani, 3- Gibrosi temi hovagan garke yev temagan gazmavoroume. Editor Archbishop Varoujan Hergelian. Presentation by Yeghia Kayayan. Under the auspices of the wife of the Armenian MP Maggie Mahdessian.
Saturday 4 June watch the Russia against Armenia match at HMEM/AYMA.
Sunday 5 June starting from 12:00 Open day get-together party organised by the Larnaca PTA. A day of fun with kebab and drinks, bouncing castle, bingo, face painting. All are welcome.
Wednesday 8 June at 6:00 p.m. - Nareg Armenian School (Nicosia) - Mangabardezi Daregan Hantes to be held in the school Hall.
Wednesday 15 June at 6:30 p.m. - Nareg Armenian Schools Graduation Ceremony (Elementary + Gymnasium) to be held at the school Amphitheatre.
18 June at 7:00 pm - The Cultural Ladies Committee of The Armenian Club of Larnaca is organising an evening dedicated to Fathers Day. The event will take place on at Nareg School Hall in Larnaca. Main speaker of the day is Nareg Principal Vera Tahmazian.
13th to 31st July - Khalkidiki Camp of the Armenian Relief Society (HOM) of Greek Macedonia and Thrace Greece: Arrival in Thessaloniki 13/7: Departure from Thessaloniki 31/07. Age of participants: 10-14. Last date of participation: 23 June. For more information and reservations you can contact the Cyprus Chapter of the Armenian Relief Society (HOM) by calling Louise Aynedjian on 99533684.
18 June at 7:00 pm - The Cultural Ladies Committee of The Armenian Club of Larnaca is organising an evening dedicated to Fathers Day. The event will take place on at Nareg School Hall in Larnaca. Main speaker of the day is Nareg Principal Vera Tahmazian.
GES HAY (IN L.A.) now available on DVD
GES HAY (IN L.A.) is now available on DVD. For EUR 20 plus shipping (for abroad) you can own the DVD which contains one disc for the play and another with pictures from the practice a day before the actual play. As you can see from the above CD image, the DVD is as unique as the play. A perfect gift to your loved ones!
For your orders, please contact Shoushig Bakalian on (00357) 99667828 or any committee member of Hamazkayin Cultural and Educational Association Cyprus Oshagan Chapter.
Direct to Yerevan
Armenian Sports by Sevag Devletian
PANARMENIAN GAMES: On May 30, Yerevan hosted a meeting of the International Committee of the Pan-Armenian Games Executive Committee. The Application deadline for participation at the tournament is July 15 2011. Chief judge of Pan-Armenian Games Yeghishe Davtyan noted that the best halls and stadiums of Armenia will host the fourth Pan-Armenian Games. Specifically, football matches will be held at Nairi and Hrazdan stadiums, FC Pyunik stadium, Apovian city stadium, as well as synthetic grass of Armenias Football Academia. The Yerevan State Engineering Universitys hall will host the futsal tournament.
FOOTBALL: On Saturday June 4 2011, St. Petersburgs Petrovsky stadium will host the EURO 2012 Russia vs. Armenia qualifier at 6:00 pm local Cyprus time.
JUDO: Moscow hosted the Judo Grand Slam, during which sportsmen could qualify for the 2012 London Olympic Games. The tournament brought together 463 judo wrestlers from 63 countries. Armenia was represented by World Championship bronze winner and World Cup winner Hovhannes Davtyan and Gor Harutyunyan (both in 60kg weight category), as well as World Cup winner Armen Nazaryan (66kg.) Davtyan celebrated two victories, but was defeated in the third fight by French Sofiance Milous, who won silver. Davtyan was the fifth. Nazaryan also finished the fifth, suffering a defeat by Russias Musa Mogushkov in the third fight. Harutyunyans participation was unsuccessful, and he has not managed to gain Olympic points for Armenias team.
TENNIS: On May 30, the leading tennis player of the Armenian team, Ani Amiraghyan returned to Yerevan from two Turkey-hosted international tournaments. At the ITF Futures Izmir-hosted tournament, Amiraghyan lost during the semi final game. At May 23-29 tournament in Gaziantep, Turkey, Amiraghyan made it to finals to gain the first place in pair with Basak Erday.
CHESS: Armenian grandmaster Sergey Grigoryants dominates the Moscow Championship going on in the Russian capital. Grigoryants is 1 point ahead of his rivals. Another Armenian GM Vigen Mirumyan tops the standings of Open Orlova 2011 (Czech Republic) with 6 points.
ARCHERY: On July 18-23, Armenian archery team will participate in Cyprus-hosted Youth and Junior European Cup finals. Before European Cup finals, Armenian archers will participate in World Youth Championship to be held July 2-10 in Italy. Male archers Vasil Shahnazaryan, Arshak Petrosyan, avid Khachatryan and female archer Gohar Shahnazaryan will represent Armenia at the championship.
WRESTLING: Armenias Musa Murtazaliyev (74kg) and Hajimurad Nurmagomedov (84kg) won bronze at an international wrestling tournament held in Makhachkala, Russia.
New development project overlooking Larnaca Salt Lake, by three young Armenian professionals of our community. Click here
Gibrahay Sports by Sevag Devletian
Marios Petrou defeated Simon Aynedjian in a closely contested third set tie breaker 10-8 in the Finals of the Pancyprian Seniors Singles tournament at the Audi Center Court while Petrou and Theophanous defeated Aynedjian and Kyprianides, 7-5, 6-4 in the finals of the over 35 event of the same tournament.
Exclusive distributor and representative in Cyprus for Czech Natural Cosmetics Manufaktura. Visit our website and order online. Free delivery in Cyprus. click here