30 April 2006

Kuwaiti press deals with the Armenian Genocide

Azad-Hye, Dubai, 30 April 2006: Kuwait is one of the most relaxed Arab
countries about press freedom. Journalists exercise self censorship and
avoid tackling officially unacceptable policies.

Nevertheless, Kuwait has a lively media. This is why when the Armenian
Prelacy headed by Archbishop Gorun Babian approached Kuwaiti media through
press conference on the 24th April 2006, the immediate result was the
publication on the next day of series of articles and reports on the
Armenian Genocide, in a way that formed a sort of surprise to the ordinary

Journalist Leila Al Sarraf signed the following article in "Al Qabas" daily
(25th April 2006), translated into English:

Prayer in the Armenian Orthodox Prelacy
Gorun Babian: "Turkey’s blockade of Armenia is against humanity"

Archbishop Dr. Gorun Babian, Head of the Armenian Church in Kuwait, said
that the whole world should recognize the Armenian Genocide which was
committed by the Turks 91 years ago. He described the Genocide as an act
against the whole humanity, not only against the Armenians. He made his
remarks during a press conference that took place in the Armenian Prelacy on
the occasion of the annual commemoration of the Armenian Genocide,
underlining that the Armenians demand from the world and the Turkish
government acknowledgement and condemnation of the Genocide.

Archbishop Babian added: "The Turkish government is proud of its war
criminals. It shamelessly erects monuments of those criminals in various
Turkish cities. Is it fair to reward the criminals and to deprive the
oppressed? The Christian faith urges us to forgive, but the wrong doer
should first confess his mistakes. The Turkish government has not
acknowledged the enormity of the mistake it has done by committing the

Archbishop Gorun Babian demanded the recognition of the Genocide and the
right for compensation. He also called to establish good relations with the
Turkish government and the lifting of the Turkish blockade against Armenia,
which is in fact a criminal offence against humanity. On the other hand, the
Head of the Armenian Youth Organisation said that "In school we teach our
children how to demand the Armenian rights and we do not instruct any kind
of hatred against the Turkish people. 91 years have passed without the
Turkish government recognizing the Genocide, although more than 200
political, legal, governmental entities have recognized it", he concluded.

At the end of the press conference Archbishop Gorun prayed, with the members
of the church, for the souls of the martyrs of the Armenian Genocide.


Besides "Al Qabas", other Kuwaiti dailies covered the press conference.
Ousama Abu Al Khair from "Al Raielam" referred to the declaration of the
Ruler of Mecca in 1917 (Sherif Mecca Al Housein Bin Al Ali), in which he
officially asked all the Arab tribes and his allies to protect the refugee
Armenians and to grant them the much required peace and support. A copy of
this declaration appears in many sources.

Journalist Abu Al Khair mentions that the Armenians demand from the Turkish
government recognition of the Genocide and compensations, the way Germans
did regarding the Jewish Holocaust caused by the Nazis. Armenians also
demand the opening of the borders and the normalization of the relations
between Armenian and Turkey and the lifting of the inhumane blockade.

Journalist Boushra Mohammed of "Al Anbaa" daily refers to the gratitude of
the Armenians towards the Kuwaiti government for the policy of tolerance and
the endorsement of peaceful co-existence amongst the nations. The religious
and cultural tolerance in Kuwait allows the Armenians to lead flourishing
community life.

Journalist Rima Al Baghdadi of "Al Seyassah" daily quoted Archbishop Babian
saying that all Armenians who have survived the Genocide are living proofs
that the Genocide really took place and had many tragic faces. Every
Armenian family has a story related to the Genocide. Every one has lost
beloved ones. More than half of the Armenian population was destroyed.
Hitler made a statement before invading Poland in 1939 in which he said:
“who remembers today the destruction of the Armenians?”

"Arab Times" English language daily’s Francis A. Clifford Cardozo posted the
following report on 25 April 2006

Armenians celebrate 91st anniversary;
"Genocide committed by Turkey a crime against humanity"

KUWAIT CITY: The genocide committed by Turkey against Armenians is a crime
against humanity, says Archbishop Goriun Babian, the Armenian Prelacy of
Kuwait and Arabian Gulf countries. Armenians all over the world commemorate
genocide victims on April 24 and this year celebrate the 91st anniversary.
Addressing a press conference at the Armenian Church on Sunday, Archbishop
Babian added that "what angers the Armenians most is the fact that Turkey
has not acknowledged the crimes committed against the Armenians.

This is the main reason why we have not been able to reach a peaceful
agreement with Turkey and as result the Armenians are continuing to
struggle." As part of the celebrations, the Armenian Youth Federation on
Sunday organized a cultural programme at the church followed by a lecture
focusing on the genocide. A high mass will be held at 11.30 am on Monday
preceded by special prayer service for the martyrs.

Archbishop Babian went on to add that Armenians are grateful to Arabs
because they took them under their wings and extended them their hospitality
when they were being targeted by the Turks, adding a decree was issued by
the Sharif of Makkah in order to safeguard the rights of Armenians. "I am a
living testimony of the Armeninian genocide. Both my parents survived the
genocide and moved to Lebanon at the age of 5. I lost many members of my
family during the genocide," added the Archbishop.

Goriun said Turkey sentenced to death in absentia three of its top leaders
who were involved in the genocide and that other perpetrators got 15 years
in jail.

Al Qabas:



Al Raielam:

Al Seyassah:

Arab Times:

1- Press conference in the Prelacy of Kuwait on 24th April 2006
2- Archbishop Gorun Babian

URL and photos: http://www.azad-hye.net/news/viewnews.asp?newsId=734agf67

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