Category Archives: Politics

ANCA Joins Congressional Leaders, Coalition Partners at Capitol Hill Press Conference Condemning Azerbaijan’s Blockade of Artsakh

#SaveKarabakhCoalition Launched to Stop Azerbaijan from Committing Second Armenian Genocide

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) was joined by Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Rep. David Valadao (R-CA), House Appropriations Foreign Operations Subcommittee Ranking member Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), and Representatives Judy Chu (D-CA), Lou Correa (D-CA), Jim Costa (D-CA), and Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY) in calling on the Biden Administration to stop U.S. military aid to Azerbaijan and send emergency aid to Artsakh in response to the devastating humanitarian crisis in Artsakh caused by Azerbaijan’s blockade of the Lachin Corridor, reported the ANCA (a leading partner in the broad-based Save Karabakh Coalition).

The Capitol Hill press conference, held in the Press Triangle at the foot of the U.S. Capitol Building, featured the participation of former U.S. Ambassador for Religious Freedom Sam Brownback, Artsakh Representative to the U.S. Robert Avetisyan, and representatives of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) and a diverse group of non-government organizations led by the Anglican Office of International and Government Affairs, Christian Solidarity International, the Baroness Caroline Cox of Queensbury and founder of the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART), the Vulnerable Peoples Project, and supported by the Genocide Watch, Hellenic American Leadership Council, and In Defense of Christians, who announced the launch of the Save Karabakh Coalition. The press conference was moderated by Reverend Canon Justin Murff, Executive Director of the Anglican Office for Government and International Affairs.

“This is a diverse coalition with a laser focus – saving Artsakh,” said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian. “We stand shoulder to shoulder with our coalition and in solidarity with our Congressional friends advancing anti-blockade legislation, set to be introduced in the U.S. House. Now, more than ever, Armenian and allied Americans need to stand up, and speak out – and that starts with taking action today at www.anca.org/blockade.”

Congressional Leaders Condemn Azerbaijan; Demand Concrete U.S. Action

“As a Greek American, our history, Greece and the Armenian community go back very, very far. And obviously we both suffered greatly at the hands of the Ottoman Empire. Human rights, genocide, we’ve experienced a lot together and so that is why I’m here today to continue to stand with the Armenian community and see that centuries later, they’re still suffering human rights violations.” – Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY)

“He is announcing his intention of this blockade, which is to make Artsakh unlivable and to use a blockade as a method of ethnic cleansing. The tactic is blockade. The effect is civilian deprivation. The purpose is ethnic cleansing. The United States must act. […] I urge the Administration to impose real consequences on Aliyev for plunging the people of Artsakh into this humanitarian disaster.” – Rep. Jim Costa (D-CA)

“Our job is to make sure that we bring justice to the Armenian people. Your job is to make sure that we don’t forget to make sure that we’re reminded that the struggle continues. As we move forward, I know we will reach a place. I know we will continue to accord to reach a place where the Armenian people can enjoy freedom, human rights and religious freedom.” – Rep. Lou Correa (D-CA)

Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA): “The launch of the Save Karabakh Coalition here at the U.S. Capitol is an inspiring show of support for the 120,000 Armenians living in Artsakh peacefully but suffering at the hands of the Aliyev regime. I will continue to work with my colleagues here in Congress to make sure that the United States stands up for the ideals of democracy and self-determination and to that end stands with the people of Artsakh.”

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA): “Artsakh is enduring a major and growing humanitarian crisis caused by Azerbaijan’s illegal blockade of the Lachin Corridor, Artsakh’s only humanitarian lifeline to Armenia. And so yes, like all of you, I strongly condemn Azerbaijan’s blockage of the vital corridor connecting Armenia and Artsakh and call for the immediate opening.”

Rep. David Valadao (R-CA): “Azerbaijan is once again weaponizing critical infrastructure and manufacturing a humanitarian crisis for Armenians living in Nagorno Karabakh. The U.S. must use every single diplomatic tool we have at our disposal to end this blockade and ensure the safety and wellbeing of Armenians living in Artsakh.”

Armenian Assembly of America Jacksonville Briefing

The Armenian Assembly of America invites you to a special community meeting and briefing on Friday, February 17, 2023, from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm in Jacksonville, Florida, with Assembly Board Co-Chair Anthony Barsamian and Executive Director Bryan Ardouny. The meeting is hosted by Carl and Linda Bazarian, Assembly trustee members, and the Jacksonville Mission Parish Council led by Elmira Grigoryan, Chair and John Brooks, Vice Chair.

Anthony and Bryan will brief community members on the latest developments in Armenia and Artsakh, on U.S.-Armenia relations, and on the Assembly’s assessment of the 118th Congress following the election of new House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). Carl Bazarian, as a former Assembly Board Chair and current FAR (Fund for Armenian Relief) Board Vice Chair, will also offer his perspective on Armenian American advocacy.

The briefing is free and open to all community members. Young professionals and local college and high school students are encouraged to attend. Please pre-register for the Armenian Assembly Briefing here.

The Armenian Church of Jacksonville is located at 3900 Atlantic Blvd., Jacksonville, Florida 32207.

For questions about the event or 2023 Assembly membership, please contact Mary Jo Bazarian Murray, Director of Development and Membership, at mjbazarianmurray@aaainc.org.

Commissioner Mark Samuelian Celebration of Life Service

MIAMI BEACH, FL – Florida Armenians (FLArmenians) deeply mourns the sudden passing of Miami Beach Commissioner Mark Samuelian, who passed away surrounded by family and loved ones on June 22, 2022. He was 58 years old. Samuelian was a beloved member of the South Florida Armenian American community. Originally from Boston, MA, Samuelian moved to Miami Beach in 2003 and was immediately active in his local community.

Samuelian had just been reelected to his seat in 2021 after winning for the first time in 2017 on a “resident first” agenda, NBC News Chanel 6 Miami reported.

“Samuelian was the first Armenian American elected in Miami Dade County,” stated FLArmenians Editor Arsine Kaloustian. We are so grateful for his years of steadfast service and his lasting contributions to Miami Beach and to the South Florida Armenian American community. His loss will be felt not only regionally, but throughout the state,,” Kaloustian said.

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said Samuelian was a “superb colleague and dedicated public servant.” Miami Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said his death is a “profound loss for our entire community.”

A Celebration of Life of Mark Samuelian will be held on Monday, July 11 at 4:00pm at the New World Center, 500 17 Street, Miami Beach, FL 33139. Public parking is available in the city garage at 640 17th St, Miami Beach, FL 33139.

You can watch online as the event will be LIVE STREAMED on the City of Miami Beach’s Facebook Page at 4:00pm.