Saturday, 31 January 2009

Watch Erdogan's outburst against Israeli President‏

January 30, 2009

Turkish Prime Minister Storms Out of World Economic Forum

Erdogan to Peres: "You Kill People"

In an unprecedented outburst, Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan sharply attacked Israeli President Shimon Peres during a recent economic conference in Davos, Switzerland.

The videotaped criticism reflects the growing tension and increasingly strained relations between the two countries.

-- Watch the video

-- Email us your comments and suggestions.

Read more about this developing situation:

The Daily Mail: Turkish PM storms out of World Economic Forum . . .

The Jerusalem Post: Erdogan's remarks aid anti-Semitism

Globe and Mail: Israel, Turkey and the politics of genocide

Huffington Post: Major American-Jewish Organizations may no Longer Back Turkey

The ANCA is interested in your views about how recent international developments may impact the Armenian American advocacy agenda. Please share your thoughts by writing to

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Inch E Tourkio Ter-ue Michin Arevelki Mech‏




Rant Number 337 29 January 2009

The Valkyries were Odin’s daughters. Twelve awesome females who hovered over battlefields and carried fallen warriors to Valhalla. The brave Germans who tried to kill Hitler in 1944 chose ‘Valkyrie’ as a code name for their plot. Hoping, no doubt, the awesome maidens would speed the raving Fuhrer on his way to hell. His demons protected the tyrant, alas. Instead, it was for the doomed conspirators that the Valkyries metaphorically came.

The hero of Bryan Singer’s movie, Valkyrie, is Count Claus Schenk Von Stauffenberg. The officer who carried the bomb aimed at the tyrant. OK, on first hearing Tom Cruise was going to play him, I groaned. ‘A second death.’ (That Cruise is a Scientologist, a thing that worried Germans, is irrelevant.) I was wrong. The star is surprisingly good. In battle the real Stauffenberg had lost one eye, his right hand, half his left hand and part of his leg. Not a glamorous man to play. Yet Cruise does it. I used to think him insipid but here he is engrossing. A taut, steely and charismatic performance. Three cheers for Tom!

The characters of Valkyrie do not dwell the morality of tyrannicide. It is taken for granted. Quite right. Anyone who was not convinced that the Fuhrer was a manic dictator who had invaded other countries, killed millions and was bent on destroying his own people, and hence deserved death, would be morally warped. Nonetheless, anti-Nazi officers had to wrestle with the dilemmas posed by their having sworn an oath of allegiance to Hitler. All the more to their honour that their conscience saw through that. But Bryan Singer has eschewed verbose debate. Instead he has concentrated on the visual dramatics, as well as terse dialogue. The result is gripping. I enjoyed it.

Valkyrie has annoyed Germanophobes. ‘The 1944 plotters did not try to kill Hitler to save the Jews’, smug historian Andrew Roberts blabbed on TV. True. But neither did Britain or America go to war to save the Jews from extermination, so put that in your pipe and smoke it, Andy!

Further, Stauffenberg and fellow anti-Nazis are blamed for being old-fashioned, aristocratic fuddy-duddies: ‘reactionaries’. Actually, Stauffenberg, though from a monarchist and Catholic background, later sympathised with socialism. He was close to the Kreisau Circle, another focus of opposition to Hitler since 1933. They wanted post-war Germany to follow the principles of Christian ethics but also looked to the East with sympathy for the Russian people. Yes, most were fiercely anti-Bolshevik. Well, wasn’t Churchill, too? As to the monarchy, what on earth is Britain?

Truth is, there is a distinct vein of racism about Germans in the British media, as well as in certain quarters. A film depicting ‘another Germany’, as opposed to that of the tiresome clichés regurgitated by the popular media, is bound to upset them. The movie shows to the international audiences some upright, better Germans than the usual panoply of barking, murderous SS Hollywood has accustomed them to. Almost unbearable, I imagine, for those whose tiny minds are fed by the endless stream of WWII movies and programmes on TV. Not that there isn’t a reason for that but… a buon intenditor, poche parole, as we Italians like to say.

Odd prejudice, in a way, for what used to be termed an ‘Anglo-Saxon’ nation, aka ‘Germanic’. Come to think of it, the world is still largely dominated by Germans. Aren’t America’s roots and basic stock Anglo-Saxon, too? (‘But dad, they are pretty mongrelised Germans’, my son Linus interjects, as I write this. Cheek! That silly boy worries me. He is getting increasingly right-wing. I wonder why.) And France also (Frankreich) – the Franks were a German tribe. Italians…Well, we no longer count for a bloody anything but in the Middle Ages we rejoiced in our German emperors. The Visigoths ruled Spain, Scandinavians, Russia…verily, Deutschland uber alles! Germanophobia reveals itself for a form of self-hatred for anyone of European stock, methinks. The decline of the West is also the decline of German ascendancy over the rest of the world. A sobering thought.

Had the July conspirators succeeded in assassinating Hitler, what then? They hoped for a separate peace with the Western Allies and a turning of the tables on the Soviet Union. I fear it was a vain hope. Because at the

Casablanca Conference in 1943 Roosevelt and Churchill had insisted on the unconditional surrender of both the Third Reich and Japan. Roosevelt hypocritically claimed it meant the destruction of Nazism but of course the policy hindered internal opposition, while helping Hitler a lot. He used ‘unconditional surrender’ to convince his people that they could expect no mercy and must therefore fight to the end. Given that the Allies ruthlessly went on to reduce German cities to rubble, murdering large parts of the civilian population into the bargain, you could be forgiven for admitting the evil Fuhrer had a point. Moreover, Casablanca in the end resulted in the handing over of East Europe to Stalin’s tender care – including the Poland Britain had gone to war to save! For East Europeans it meant nearly fifty years of slavery, oppression and torture. Churchill, unlike Roosevelt, saw that but it was too late. ‘Uncle Joe’ Stalin was the real victor of Casablanca.

At a recent Muslim meeting discussing Middle East conundrums a voice from the back startled me. ‘What about assassination?’ someone asked. God knows what the chap meant – I safely chose not to delve. Of course, as my friend Helen opines, killing anyone, never mind how bad, is wrong. She has a point. Maybe old Socrates, that brave champion of reason, got it right. The tyrant, qua tyrant, and hence a bad person, is a most unhappy man. His true punishment consists in his being what he is, an unrighteous, irrational human being. Any further chastisement he may suffer is incidental. The evil a dictator does is really a form of self-destruction. Admittedly, a high, lofty view but still one for which there is much to be said.

Revd Frank Julian Gelli


Armenian News

Turkish Daily News
January 23, 2009 Friday


Armenia said on Wednesday it was very close to normalising relations
with neighbouring Turkey after a century of hostility.

The comments by Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian followed
similarly optimistic remarks by his Turkish counterpart last week. The
two countries have no diplomatic ties and in 1993 Ankara closed their
land border in a show of solidarity with ally Azerbaijan, which was
fighting Armenian-backed separatists over the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

Relations have been haunted by the killing of Armenians by Ottoman
Turks during World War One, which ex-Soviet Armenia says amounted to
genocide. Ankara denies there was genocide.

But there has been a flurry of diplomacy in recent months, including a
visit by Turkish President Abdullah Gul to Yerevan in September to
attend a football match between the two countries.

"We are very close to normalising Armenian-Turkish relations,"
Nalbandian told a news conference. "We can take the next step and
resolve the issue if Turkey, like Armenia, approaches it without
preconditions and opens the border," he said. "After the border opens,
we are ready to form a commission in which we can discuss issues
relevant to both countries."

Since its war with Russia last year raised questions about Georgia's
role as a safe transit route for oil and gas exports from the Caspian
Sea, Armenia is being eyed as a potential alternative. Better ties
between the neighbours would also boost Ankara's European Union
membership bid.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan said in a television interview
last Friday normalisation of relations between Armenia and Turkey and
Armenia and Azerbaijan was no longer "a dream." "I can easily say we
have never come this close to a plan regarding the final normalisation
of relations with Armenia," he said.

Turkey Drops Probe Into Armenian Apology Campaign

A Turkish prosecutor has dropped a probe into a campaign to apologize
for the Ottoman mass killings of Armenians, citing laws protecting
freedom of speech, the Anatolia news agency reported Monday.

The prosecutor decided there was no ground to bring charges over the
petition because "in democratic societies opponent opinions are
protected within the scope of freedom of expression," Anatolia said.

The probe was launched earlier this month after several Ankara residents
filed a complaint asking for the organizers and signatories of an
Internet petition apologizing for the deaths to be punished for "openly
denigrating the Turkish nation", an offence that carries two years in

The petition, posted online on December 15, states that the signatory
"does not accept... the denial of the Great Catastrophe that the Ottoman
Armenians were subjected to in 1915." It ends with an offer of

The text, which refrains from using the term "genocide" to describe the
massacres, has been signed by more than 28,000 people, among them
intellectuals and artists.
Benjamin Zephaniah
Monday, 26 January 2009

Genocide is an appalling crime against humanity that we hope will
never again be repeated. Today, as we approach Holocaust Memorial Day ,
we might stop and reflect on the fact that it still has the potential
to be repeated and perpetrated around the world, unless we are on our
guard and understand that our actions today have consequences tomorrow.

The use of the term genocide can be problematic and contentious
but it shouldn't disguise historical fact. One of the first modern
day genocides took place in Armenia, a part of modern day Turkey in
1915. This massacre of 1.5 million people, indiscriminate of age or
gender, is still not acknowledged as genocide by Turkey - long after
it took place. The United States did not recognise or act on the
events at the time and consequently Hitler admitted looking at the
Armenians and deciding that if they can get away with it, he could
also. If people don't recognise something, its entire existence is
erased. It begs the question - if the United Kingdom and United States
had not recognised the Holocaust when it happened, would anyone think
it had ever existed? Who decides what we remember and what we don't -
and does it mean that things we don't remember or recognise didn't
exist and don't count?

My earliest recollection of hatred was in the late 60s when I was eight
years old, and I still have the scar to prove it. I was walking home
from school in Handsworth, Birmingham, when another boy came cycling
past with a brick in his hand. He hit me across the back of my head
with the brick and shouted 'You black bastard!', as he rode off. When
I got home, blood pouring from the back of my head, my mother told me
that some people in the world are just like that and it's something we
have to live with. It was not even a consideration to report the crime
- it would have been ignored anyway. This incident was the first time
I realised I was different and that people actually hated me for who
and what I was. The scar on the back of my head is a constant reminder
of this.

People have to understand the past to see the future, they have
to start recognising the dangers of the present to prevent them
escalating into the Holocaust of the future. A close late friend
of mine recently told me a story of how, when she was very young,
she went to a political meeting in Austria with her mother and
auntie. After the meeting, the two adults were debating the event,
concluding that the main political figure, who was a radical speaker,
would never amount to anything and should just be ignored.

That main figure was Adolf Hitler.

When people don't recognise these dangers, the problems start. Call it
innocent igno rance, call it optimism, however you want to look at it,
unless we recognise and stand up to these figures, who knows where it
can lead? My friend's mother and auntie certainly would never have
imagined what Hitler could go on to do in the years that followed
that meeting.

Bob Marley said in one of his songs 'Well the biggest man you
ever did see, was once a baby', and that is what interests me as a
writer. Hitler was once a baby and would have been looked on adoringly
by people. He then went on to become one of the most powerful men
in history, orchestrating the killings of hundreds of thousands of
innocent people. The boy who racially attacked me in Handsworth may
have gone on to abuse and physically hurt other people since. His
attack on me was left unchecked so what's to stop him?

It is so important that we have Holocaust Memorial Day in January to
remind us to acknowledge how bad we can be to each other, whether
it's direct and intentional or indirect and unintentional. All it
takes is one discriminatory group to gain power and it can all fall
apart. We must join together to recognise where these acts of hatred,
regardless of size, can lead if left unchecked.

I urge all Britons to "Stand up to Hatred" and recognise the impact
we can have on our future. By considering these things, next time we
see, hear, or experience any act of hatred anywhere and in any f orm,
we can make a better future.

[in his piece in The Times, the Chief Rabbi stressed the uniqueness of the
Holocaust but did mention gencides since then. Nothing about events
before then. He praised the young for being more aware of genocides but
it would have been good if older folk like himself did the same]
Steve Bradley
Birmingham Mail
Jan 26 2009

EVENTS were held across the Black Country to recall how millions of
Jews died at the hands of the Nazis.

Sandwell's Mayor Coun Bob Price led a Holocaust memorial event at
the Memorial Gardens in West Bromwich yesterday.

Representatives from the Royal British Legion and the local Jewish
community attended, with young people from Coneygre Arts Centre,

The ceremony began with the laying of a wreath and a minute's silence
and reflected on the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust's theme, which is
Stand Up To Hatred.

Coun Price said: "It is essential we do not forget the tragic loss of
life in the Holocaust and other genocides such as Cambodia, Bosnia,
Rwanda and Darfur. It is right Sandwell marks this day, this year
as part of Sandwell's Year of Communities, so we can remember these
tragedies, ensure they are not forgotten and stand together against
prejudice, racism and discrimination."

At Walsall's New Art Gallery on Saturday, Walsall Multi-Faith Forum
joined councillors and education provider Serco in a Holocaust
commemorative event.

Mayor Coun Tom Ansell lit a candle of remembrance and reflected Nazi
atrocities had been reflected in genocides in Africa. He said 90 per
cent were caused by politics rather than religion.

Hindu representative Manu Vyas said Hitler's methods were similar to
those used in the driving out of Hindus from Kashmir, and the massacre
of Armenians by the Turks

Matloob Hussain, chairman of the Union of Muslim Organisations in
Walsall, said: "We should learn from history and move together as
God's children, as human beings."


Noyan Tapan
Jan 23, 2009

YEREVAN, JANUARY 23, NOYAN TAPAN. Diaspora's potential is not used
completely for the sake of development of Armenia's economy. Gohar
Gyulumian, the economist of the World Bank Yerevan Office, said
at the January 23 discussion organized jointly by the Ministry of
Diaspora and World Bank Yerevan Office. She said that one of Armenia's
biggest official donors, WB cooperating with the Ministry wishes to
help in the issue of improving the relations with country's biggest
unnofficial donor.

According to G. Gyulumian's evaluation, cooperation with the Diaspora
should be moved from the charity direction to the business cooperation

According to her, Armenia has a problem of integrating to
international economy and coming out to foreign markets. And
according to G. Gyulumian, the Armenians worldwide can have much
contribution in that issue. However, at present there are a number of
circumstances hindering that potential's use, in particular, breaking
off Armenia-Diaspora relations in the Soviet years, not knowing each
other well, which in its turn results in the lack of confidence and
caution. "The problems are different, but we should think of overcoming
these obstacles, as only in that case we can record success," she said.

According to Minister Hranush Hakobian, it is natural that Diaspora's
whole potential is not used, as it is a very difficult and large
phenomenon. "It is not one structure, with which we work well or
badly. To work with 7 million Armenians, who are not subordinate to
you in the structural respect and are not obliged at all to fulfill
your tasks, is very difficult. It is purely with friendly, partner,
patriotic motives that they should come and spend their time, use
their knowledge, experience, and abilities for the sake of homeland's
development," the Minister said.

H. Hakobian said that the Ministry is already doing some work in that
direction. In particular, three professional all Armenian conferences
will be held this year. The first is a conference under the title
Armenian Architecture in the 21st Century. Besides, according to
the Minister, an attempt is made to create an all Armenian network
contributing to strengthening of not only Armenia-Diaspora, but also
Diaspora-Diaspora contacts.
Interfax, Russia
Jan 24 2009
Armenian president pardons 16 people convicted for March 1, 2008
unrest in Yerevan

Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan has issued a decree pardoning 16
people convicted of involvement in mass unrest that took place in
Yerevan on March 1, 2008.

"Sixteen convicts serving sentences ranging from two to three years
have been pardoned" in line with Sargsyan's decree of January 24, the
presidential press service told Interfax on Saturday.

The people were found guilty of participating in mass unrest,
illegally carrying, acquiring, using, transporting, or selling weapons
and ammunition, and resisting police on March 1, 2008, it said.

Sargsyan pardoned these people, "taking into account the convicts'
pleas addressed to the president, the absence of past criminal
records, family circumstances, and health status," he said.

The president had earlier pardoned 12 other people found guilty of the
same crimes.

Following presidential elections on February 19, 2008, Armenian
opposition activists led by former President Levon Ter-Petrosian, who
again aspired to the presidency, refused to recognize the official
results of the elections and organized mass protests. On March 1,
2008, these protests grew into clashes with police, which left ten
people dead and more than 250 injured.
Jan 26 2009

It's time for some rumor patrol. There are several reports circulating
the internet that movie mogul Mel Gibson is planning on shooting a
documentary about the Armenian Genocide.

The documentary, "The Forty Days of Musa Dagh," was going to address
the genocide that took approximately 1.2 million Armenians lives
during WWI.

To this day, the Turkish government has done everything it can to sweep
the facts about the Armenian genocide under the rug. And apparently
Mel was ready to address them on the big screen.

According to the reports, actor Sylvester Stallone was also set to
partake in the movie, but declined the role after he received 3,000
e-mails from the ASIMED organization.

Hollyscoop contacted Mel Gibson's rep Alan Nierob to get confirmation
on the project, but he assured us there is "No truth to it whatsoever."

So what's next for Mel? He's going to play a homicide detective who
investigates the death of his activist daughter in his next flick,
'The Edge of Darkness'.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

I killed 10 prisoners says Turkish actor‏ - Gibrahayer mag.

Gibrahayer e-magazine
The largest circulation Armenian e-magazine on the Internet
Circulates every Wednesday - Established in 1999


GIBRAHAYER e-magazineGibrahayer Nicosia - In a shocking revelation on Turkish Star TV Turkish actor Attila Olgac confessed last week that he killed Greek Cypriot prisoners of war in cold blood during the invasion of the Turkish army in 1974.
''I killed ten people,'' he said and explained that the first one he shot on the head was a 19-year old Greek Cypriot national guardsman who was tied with hands behind his back. "As I went to him he spat on my face and I shot him in the head" he said.
Olgac, who stars in a popular TV series ''The valley of the wolves,'' said that after he killed the Greek Cypriot soldier he killed ''nine more.''
More than 1,600 of Greek Cypriots have been missing since 1974 and although 400 identifications by DNA have revealed the identity of the deceased, accounts by people like Attila Olgac should provide info on the identity, location and circumstances under which these particular deaths and "disappearances" occurred.
Regarded as a serious breach of Article 13, of the Geneva Convention, the next day of the confession found the leadership of the Cyprus government, legal experts and The Committee of the Missing Persons, planning the next move.
The mass cold blooded killing of the Turkish actor stole the Turkish media headlines and is widely being debated, as the actor - soon after coming forward with the confession - took back his statement saying "it was part of a scenario of a movie he was writing". The Turkish media accused Olgac for looking and sounding ridiculous and for "exposing and weakening Turkey by giving an image that Turks are barbarians."
Popular Turkish journalist Mehmet Ali Birand urged the country's Justice to step in, arguing that actor Attila Olgac should stand trial whether he lied or not.
View the confession and comments of House President Marios Garoyian's by clicking the above image or by clicking here

GIBRAHAYER e-magazine

Cyprus New Agency - 28 January - The Cypriot government has decided to raise to the Council of Europe`s Committee of Ministers Attila Olgac`s confession that he killed ten Greek Cypriots during the 1974 Turkish invasion to Cyprus as well as to lodge an appeal to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou announced on Tuesday.
Olgac, a Turkish actor told a live TV show in Turkey last Wednesday that during the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus he killed ten Greek Cypriots, one of them a 19-year-old soldier, taken prisoner of war, who was killed in cold blood. Olgac subsequently retracted his confession, claiming he was actually talking about a film scenario.
Olgac`s confession was discussed during a meeting between Cyprus President Demetris Christofias and Cyprus Attorney-General Petros Clerides.
During the meeting it was decided that the issue will be brought to the CoE`s Committee of Ministers in the framework of 4th interstate application of Cyprus against Turkey, and at the same time to appeal to the ECHR," the Spokesman said.



THURSDAY 29 January, 8:00pm at AYMA
organised by The Armenian National Committee of Cyprus

GIBRAHAYER e-magazine
Q & A and discussion will follow the event
here to view the trailer of the film.

To sign up to the dinner that will follow the event, call Roubina Samonian on 99678316

Awarded Audience’s First Choice at the Pomegranate Film Festival
This unique documentary film is based on private conversations between Matossian and Dink in Armenian with English sub-titles (40-mins). The late Hrant talks freely of his weekly paper Agos, the Armenian Genocide, his views and attempts to reconcile Armenians and Turks, and even his own death.
Dink was charged three times ‘insulting Turkishness’ and sentenced. He scorned a campaign of death threats and warnings to leave Turkey. Tragically, he was murdered in Turkey by a Turkish assassin on 19th Jan. 2007.

GIBRAHAYER e-magazineAbout the director: “Matossian is a talented author and producer. She makes her first foray into the world of film directing with this intensely provocative piece about a courageous man who is a martyr for Armenians and all proponents of free speech. This is a documentary not to be missed.”
Matossian has also authored two books: “Black Angel, A Life of Arshile Gorky,” and “Iannis Xenakis,” a biography of the Greek composer. She broadcasts on the BBC and contributes to a number of leading British newspapers. She writes on Arts, Music, History and Armenia.
Matossian was Honorary Cultural Attaché for the first Armenian Embassy in London, 1991-2000. She was awarded Hon. Doctorate from the International Armenian Academy of Sciences, 2004.


Bulldozed Over
by H. Tertsanian in London
Why do I get a ‘déjà vu’ feeling every time I read in Cypriot newspapers or listen to the CyBC news bulletins on the LGR radio station regarding the negotiations with our northern counterparts for a solution to our beloved island’s problem?

Why do the Armenian saying ‘poshi tsanel’ (loosely translated – white wash) comes to my mind every time I read in Cypriot newspapers or listen to the PIK news bulletins on the LGR radio station regarding the negotiations with our northern counterparts for a solution to our beloved island’s problem?

I wonder why the confident (and overoptimistic?) grin has disappeared from the faces of our governing party’s officials?

Obviously something is not going as well as we were led to believe that would go in our dealings with our Turkish compadres.

Or is it so?

I tend to believe, and my logic - as far as it goes - tells me, that leaders with such a wealth of experience as those of the current governing party could not have really believed that the traditional intransigence of the Turks and Turkey could be surmounted or circumvented with truckloads of goodwill and sunny public relation exercises. After all, all the predecessors to Mr. Christofias, our President and current handler of our National problem, had the same tools and arguments under their disposal as him, and particularly in the case of two of them, namely Mr. Vassiliou and Mr. Clerides, had more inclination to bend (without breaking) to the will and whims of the Turkish leadership.

I often try to pinpoint what has changed in Cyprus after the transfer of the burden of negotiations to Mr. Christofias regarding the negotiations for a solution of the Cyprus problem. After all, the publicly expressed optimism both at home and abroad and the new hope that the proposed Christofias candidacy implied for the success of negotiations with Mr. Talaat had catapulted him to victory in the elections and thus, to the Presidential Palace.

If the administration of Northern Cyprus, of the occupied north, were independent of Turkey to any extent, then I would have tried to convince myself that maybe something could be achieved with Mr. Talaat, despite all. I would have even hoped for the help of the Turkish Cypriot moderate forces. I would really have given Mr. Christofias a fighting chance of achieving something.

However, given that Turkey is the only decision maker in the North, given that Turkey has no inclination for the time being of acting neighbourly and of accepting any other concept except total independence or near total independence of most of the occupied areas, given that since the unsuccessful coup with the Anan Plan, for the success of which our American friends had flooded the North and to a lesser extent the South with greenbacks, given that the partial relaxation of the movement of people and goods across the Green Line dividing the island into two has resulted into completely changing the economic imbalance which existed between the two communities and has relieved most of the Turkish Cypriots from the dire economic state they were in, I see no reason for the Turkish side to make any serious attempt in resolving the Cyprus Problem and of finding a mutually acceptable solution to it.

What would they and particularly Turkey gain from such a solution?

Acceptance into the European Union? That is not such a tempting gift, since there are so many other more touchy problems standing in its way towards membership.

Better relations with its neighbours? What for? Turkey gets all it wants from them anyway, since none around her have the strength, character or impunity as she has.

A pat in the back from the UN and the international community for being a good boy? Not interesting, because a bully is a bully and he likes it.


Where do we go from here? Do we continue the charade and spend a lot of time and money just to be ‘in’?

Whatever is the answer, one thing is clear: this road has too many bumps, turns and blind spots and maybe we should wait for it to be bulldozed over.

Jean Ipdjian - London Jan 2009

Περί του Αρτσάχ και του δημοψηφίσματος - Ν. Λυγερός

Δεν πρέπει να παρασυρόμαστε, η πρόταση για νέο δημοψήφισμα για το Αρτσάχ δεν είναι απλώς μια απάτη, αλλά ένα πραγματικός διπλωματικός χειρισμός. Ο πληθυσμός του Αρτσάχ έχει ήδη αποφασίσει, μέσω του δημοψηφίσματος, για την εθνική του μοίρα, άρα αυτή η πρόταση είναι αβάσιμη.
Το Αρτσάχ, έχοντας επιλέξει, διαθέτει Σύνταγμα και εκλελεγμένο Πρόεδρο με καθολική ψηφοφορία. Αφότου απέκτησε την de facto ανεξαρτησία του, το Αρτσάχ δεν έχει απλώς αποδείξει την αγωνιστικότητά του, αλλά επίσης την αποτελεσματικότητά του στη διαχείριση της εδαφικής του υπεροχής. Η κυβέρνηση είναι σταθερή και οι θεσμοί έχουν ήδη καθιερωθεί.
Το Αρτσάχ αναπτύσσεται φυσιολογικά όχι μόνο ως μία αυτόνομη δημοκρατία, αλλά ως μία ανεξάρτητη δημοκρατία, και τούτο μέσα σε ένα δημοκρατικό πλαίσιο. Κανένα επιχείρημα δεν δικαιολογεί τη διενέργεια ενός νέου δημοψηφίσματος που προσπαθούν να επιβάλουν δια της βίας και όχι λόγω μιας οποιασδήποτε ανάγκης. Αν οι Αρμένιοι του Αρτσάχ ζουν ειρηνικά, το οφείλουν στο ότι το Αρτσάχ επιμένει να υπάρχει σε πείσμα των πάντων. Έτσι οι προσπάθειες των Αζέρων όσον αφορά στο θέμα ενός νέου δημοψηφίσματος δεν ξεγελούν κανένα. Πολύ απλά, επιδιώκουν να ανακτήσουν αυτά που έχασαν με την αλαζονεία τους. Δεν αισθάνονται αρκετά δυνατοί για να αντιμετωπίσουν εκ νέου και μετωπικά τους Αρμένιους αγωνιστές και προσπαθούν να πετύχουν τους σκοπούς τους με υπονομευτικούς τρόπους. Μόνο που οι αγωνιστές του Αρτσάχ δεν πέθαναν και το πνεύμα τους επαγρυπνεί διαρκώς πάνω στην προγονική γη.
Δεν πρόκειται, λοιπόν, για ένα μισοκοιμισμένο πληθυσμό που μπορεί να ξεγελαστεί. Κανείς στο Αρτσάχ δεν εμπιστεύεται τις διπλωματικές λύσεις, διότι όλοι γνωρίζουν ότι στη διπλωματία η φωνή του δυνατότερου υπολογίζεται διπλή. Για την αρμενοσύνη, δεν επιτρέπεται να χάνει τη γη της σ’ ένα διπλωματικό παιχνίδι, ενώ έχει απελευθερωθεί χάρις στις θυσίες της αντίστασης των Αρμενίων. Οι διαπραγματεύσεις δεν είναι τόσο εύκολες όπως το είχε προεξοφλήσει η ομάδα Minsk, διότι στην τελική ανάλυση, απέναντι στους αγωνιστές που δεν έχουν πια τίποτα να χάσουν, είναι δύσκολο να είσαι φανερά άδικος.
Αντιθέτως, η πρόταση για δημοψήφισμα δίνει μια υπεκφυγή διότι αν γίνει αποδεκτή και ακολουθήσει μαζική άφιξη των Αζέρων, τότε θα μιλάμε για κυρίαρχη στρατηγική εφόσον δεν θα είναι δυνατή καμία ανατροπή. Η πληθυσμιακή κυριαρχία θα οδηγήσει στη στρατηγική κυριαρχία. Η απουσία αυτού του οράματος στο μέσο όρο θα αποβεί μοιραία για το αρμενικό ζήτημα στο Αρτσάχ. Πρέπει να προχωρήσουμε πέρα από τη ναπολεόντεια αρχή που λέει, η καλύτερη άμυνα είναι η επίθεση. Πρέπει να συνειδητοποιήσουμε ότι η επίθεση ήδη έγινε και ότι πρέπει να ακολουθήσουμε την άλλη αρχή: η καλύτερη επίθεση είναι η αντεπίθεση. Έχουμε όλα τα στοιχεία για να το κάνουμε. Η πρόταση για δημοψήφισμα δεν είναι παρά μία απλοϊκή απόπειρα για να βγουν οι Αζέροι από το αδιέξοδο.
Όμως το αρμενικό μονοπάτι είναι άλλο. Ας προβάλουμε, λοιπόν, το πρόβλημα του πληθυσμού και ας εξουδετερώσουμε κάθε δυνατότητα μετατόπισης πληθυσμού. Τέλος, ας επιβεβαιώσουμε σθεναρά ότι το Αζερμπαϊτζάν το ίδιο αποδέχεται επίσημα ότι είναι ανίκανο να υπερασπίσει τα δικαιώματα του πληθυσμού στο Αρτσάχ. Δεν χρειάζεται τίποτα άλλο για να αποδειχτεί ο υπονομευτικός χαρακτήρας της πρότασης για δημοψήφισμα.


GIBRAHAYER e-magazine

"Ambient Travel" Exhibition of paintings by
John Guevherian
on Tuesday 3 February 2009 at 7:30 pm
at Apocalypse Gallery
opening by the Minister of Health Dr. Christos Patsalides
Duration: 3 - 16 February 2009

GIBRAHAYER e-magazine
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Support Kohar's efforts in promoting Armenian music across the world by clicking here


GIBRAHAYER e-magazineNicosia, January 2009: Hrayr Jebejian, on behalf of the Armenian Evangelical Church in Cyprus, had a special meeting with His Excellency Marios Garoyian, head of the House of Representatives in Cyprus. The meeting was organised by the Armenian Representative of the Cyprus Parliament Vartkes Mahdessian, who was also present. The meeting took place on Tuesday, January 20, 2009, in Garoyian's’s office.
Hrayr Jebejian briefed Mr. Garoyian on the ministry of the Armenian Evangelical Church worldwide. He then outlined the history of the Armenian Evangelical Church in Cyprus from the early days up to the invasion in 1974. Jebejian updated Garoyian on the ongoing re-organisational work of the Armenian Evangelical Church in Cyprus and the present situation of the Church building in the occupied part of Nicosia. Recent photos and a copy of the
deeds of the occupied Armenian Evangelical Church were handed over to Marios
Garoyian for his reference. Mr. Garoyian was very happy to hear about the re-organisational work of the Armenian Evangelical Church in Cyprus and expressed his willingness to support the ministry. He then shared his impressions of his recent official visit to Armenia.
An Armenian by origin, Marios Garoyian’s visit to Armenia has been a very emotional one.
Marios Garoyian is the only Armenian political leader these days who occupies such a high ranking position outside Armenia.
News in brief by Sevag Devletian
  • A Tbilisi court Saturday charged two Javakhk Armenian community leaders Grigor Minasyan and Sergei Hagopjanyan with alleged involvement in organising "armed groups" and spying. The two are to remain in custody for two months pending a trial.
  • Freelance French journalist Jean Eckian told PanARMENIAN.Net that Charles Aznavour could be appointed as Ambassador of Armenia to Switzerland. The singer's impresario Levon Sayan made the announcement during a MIDEM news conference in Cannes.
    Aznavour received this year the "Lifetime Achievement Award" for a career studded with over 800 songs and sales of 100 million albums.
  • Gibrahayer e-magazine Chief Editor Simon Aynedjian was interviewed by the Armenian National Television H1 on the occasion of the anniversary of the assassination of Armenian journalist Hrant Dink. Part of the interview can be read by clicking here
  • Five major Jewish organizations called on the Turkish prime minister this week to "urgently address" a wave of anti-Semitism in his country, warning that Turkey's recent condemnation of Israel will make it difficult to continue supporting Turkey's attempts to prevent US recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
  • "We are very close to normalising Armenian-Turkish relations," Nalbandian told a news conference. "We can take the next step and resolve the issue if Turkey, like Armenia, approaches it without preconditions and opens the border," he said. "After the border opens, we are ready to form a commission in which we can discuss issues relevant to both countries."
  • Armenian Foreign Minister Edvard Nalbandian has said he is ready to meet his Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov. "Azerbaijan has given its consent to the meeting and I have nothing against it. Hopefully the meeting will take place in Zurich before the meeting of the presidents of the two countries," he said at a press conference last Wednesday.
  • A court in Greece sentenced a Turkish fighter pilot in absentia to four years in prison over a fatal jet crash over the Aegean Sea in 2006. First Lt. Halil Ibrahim Ozdemir was convicted Monday of negligent manslaughter. Ozdemir did not appoint a lawyer and there was no immediate reaction from Turkish authorities. Greek pilot Costas Iliakis died in the 2006 incident when two F-16 jets collided.
  • As expected, The Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) backed down on its threats to impose sanctions against Armenia on Tuesday, citing the Yerevan government's pledge to enact legal amendments that could result in the release of dozens of imprisoned opposition members.
  • Two Armenian soldiers were shot dead in the latest exchange of fire along the
    Azerbaijani - Nagorno-Karabakh border yesterday.



Gibrahayer - Nicosia 25 January, 2009 - Armenians in Cyprus remembered slain journalist Hrant Dink on the occasion of the completion of two years from his murder in Bolis at Sourp Asdvadzadzin Church-Armenia Street-Nicosia. The commemoration was organised by the local organisations of the Social Democratic Hunchakian Party, Ramgavar Liberal Democratic Party & Armenian Revolutionary Federation Dashnaktsoutiun.
Another event organised by The Armenian National Committee of Cyprus will take place at AYMA tomorrow Thursday 29 January 2009 at 8:00 pm where author and director Nouritza Matossian's documentary on Hrant Dink "Heart of Two Nations" will be screened.
Similar commemorations were held throughout the Diaspora as well as Armenia.
In Turkey thousands gathered in front of the weekly Turkish and Armenian language
newspaper Agos in the central Sisli neighbourhood, where Dink was killed.
Dink, editor in chief of Agos newspaper, was shot dead outside the offices of the paper in Bolis in January 2007. Turkish media argued that the Turkish deep state Ergenekon encouraged a young Turkish nationalist to murder Dink, while Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sedat Laciner saw the Dink Murder as a typical deep state business: "Their aim is to continue the
militarist understanding in Turkish politics. They try to prepare society for a possible military coup and the Armenian issue gives them a good tool."


and this time round, he is not alone.
Accompanying him are Messrs. Batal & Hagop

After last year's success and bowing to popular demand,
Hamazkayin Cultural & Educational Association
Cyprus Oshagan Chapter proudly presents, stand-up comedian
Pierre Shammassian from Lebanon
Wednesday February 4 at 8:00 pm
at The Utudjian Hall of the Armenian Prelature
Entrance:20 euros including food and 1st drink

To sign up contact Adour Karagulian on 99880226 & Shoushig Bakalian on 99667820
Seats are limited and tickets will be given out on a first-come first serve basis

Letters to the Editor

Dear Simon,
His Holiness Catholicos Karekin II finds it a noble cause to send students from Armenia to study in an Armenian school (Armenian College and Philanthropic Academy of Calcutta) in India. There are 3 or 4 Armenians living in the whole country of India (the 5th family you would be hard pressed to find). Yet he is dead silent about AGBU's closure of Melkonian Institute in Cyprus (EU member) surrounded by countries full of Armenian communities with no Armenian schools. Two opposing acts at India and Cyprus can not be justified by the same reason, hence the reason and the issue must be that the Cyprus property can be sold but the Indian one can not. Hayabahbanoum, is no where in sight even in the far distant horizon.
Hratch Der Stepanian
Los Angeles, CA



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At the end of our effort all websites with different domains from different countries will be cross-linked.
By acquiring a license to operate a mirror site in any country of the world, you will be granted the following:

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All six portals are programmed to facilitate migration utilities to automatically take feeds from existing websites from anywhere in the world and transfer them in real time to all portals, relieving you from the process of updating the images and listings manually, thus saving valuable time to you.

We urge you to contact Executive Director of GAP Vassilopoulos E-Media Ltd, Simon Aynedjian ( for details for partnering opportunities in your country.
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We would like to announce that the website of Gibrahayer e-magazine has had more than 75,000 unique visitors since February 2008.
Thank you for your continued support.
Simon Aynedjian - Gibrahayer e-magazine


International subscribers can make contributions to: Marfin Popular Bank Public Company Ltd, Bank Address: Strovolos Industrial Area sub-Branch Stavrou Avenue 96-I, 2034 Nicosia - Cyprus, A/C Name: Aynedjian Simon, Account No: 101 1100 3421 Swift Code: LIKI CY 2N, IBAN: CY13 0030 0101 0000 0101 1100 3421

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Sport News by Sevag Devletian

  • AGBU's Ararat FC eased passed Cyprus College by beating them 9-0 in the 1st Division of the Cyprus Futsal League and secured their spot in the play-off stages of the championship.
  • Nor Serount's Homenmen were defeated 9-2 by Morfotikos in the 3rd Division of the Cyprus Futsal Championships.
  • Lippenza lost their match against Strovolos Co-Op 0-2 for not showing up for their game on January 3.
  • In the 2nd Division of the Amateur Football League of Cyprus AYMA/HMEM lost 4-0 against AD & The City.

After a year full of wrist and back injuries and a drop to a world ranking of 97, Cypriot tennis star Marcos Baghdatis, completed what was characterised as the beginning of his comeback at the Australian Open. The former finalist made it to the fourth round after eliminating two top 30 players and bowing out to world number three, Novak Djokovic in a match that lasted almost four hours and ended at 2:30 in the morning 1-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-2. We thank Gibrahayer's correspondent Ayshe Pembe in Australia for the picture on the right, who was present at the match. GIBRAHAYER e-magazine

  • Father and son tennis team Simon and Edmond Aynedjian are up against Demetris Kyriacou and Marios Hadjigesmistos in the first round of a men's doubles tennis tournament in Nicosia, that will be played on Thursday 29 January at 5:00 pm at Laiki Sports Centre in Nicosia.
  • Ararat Yerevan FC, dropped out of the Commonwealth Champions Cup 2009 after suffering 3 consecutive defeats.
  • Armenian midfielder Levon Pachajyan will play for PAOK FC of Thessaloníki, Greece for the next six months.
  • The president of the Armenian Football Federation, MP Ruben Hayrapetyan has sold Pyunik Yerevan FC, the current football champions of Armenia, to MP Samvel Aleksanyan.
  • In the 5th tour of the Corus 2009 International Supertournament held Wijk aan Zee, Holland, Levon Aronian beat Sergey Movsisian (Slovakia) and shares the 2-5th places with another 3 participants with 3 points each.

GIBRAHAYER e-magazine
read Gore Melian's exclusive to Gibrahayer e-magazine by clicking here

We urge you to participate in the Televote
on 7 February, 2009 at 9:15 pm on RIK 1


  • Food e-Bazaar is on every Friday - Order your Armenian Food before the weekend begins on . All orders before Thursday night.
  • Home Page - View the latest issue of gibrahayer with more images and longer text
  • Did you buy your Kohar copy online? click here
  • Banner Ads_2 - Did you visit and pick your car? Now you can pick it up online and while you are at it you can also buy your next Holiday Home in Cyprus at

Gibrahayer Calendar

  • Every Saturday at 6:00 pm at AYMA - Weekly meetings of Azadamard Junior Badanegan (8-13 year olds). An educational and fun environment for the younger generation of our community. Games, trips, parties and lots of fun in a family environment. For more information contact Kevork Keoshgerian on 99817806.
  • Every Saturday at 7:00 pm at AYMA - Weekly meetings of Azadamard Senior Badanegan (13-17 year olds). For more information contact Kevork Keoshgerian on 99817806.
  • Every Sunday at 7:30 pm at AYMA - Weekly meetings of AYF Koyamard Branch (17-30 year olds).
  • Every Wednesday at 7:00 pm - Community gathering at The Armenian Club of Larnaca, followed by dinner.
  • Every Friday and Saturday evening - Marie-Louise Kouyoumdjian sings at ENALLAX with the resident Band.
  • Wednesday 28 January at 6:00 pm - 12th Exhibition of Armenian Books under the auspices of Archbishop Varoujan Hergelian, organised by The Armenian Prelature, with the participation of Moufflon Bookstore. Zegoutsaper: Vartan Tashdjian at Vahram Utudjian Hall of The Armenian Prelature. The exhibition will be open every day from 9:00am-1:00pm until 13 February, 2009
  • Thursday 29 January at 8:00 pm - Special screening of Nouritza Matossian's " Hrant Dink: Heart of Two Nations", organised by The Armenian National Committee of Cyprus at AYMA.
    Q & A after the film, and dinner to follow the discussion. Sign up with Roubina Samonian on 99678316.
  • Friday, 30 January from 5:00-6:00 pm - Alexander-Michael Hadjilyra will speak on the CyBC Radio 1 (97,2 MHz), on the Maronite programme, about the Armenian community of Cyprus.
  • Saturday, January 31, 2009, at 05:00 pm - Armenian Evangelical Church Service at the Greek Evangelical Church, 20 Gladstonos street, Nicosia. Sermon title: "Unity in Christ". The service will be dedicated to the week of Christian Unity. All are welcome.
  • Tuesday 3 February 2009 at 7:30 pm - "Ambient Travel" - Exhibition of paintings by
    John Guevherian at Apocalypse Gallery opening by the Minister of Health Dr. Christos Patsalides
  • Wednesday February 4 at 8:00 pm - Hamazkayin Cultural & Educational Association Cyprus Oshagan Chapter presents, stand-up comedian Pierre Shammassian from Lebanon at The Utudjian Hall of the Armenian Prelature, Entrance:20 euros including food and 1st drink. To sign up contact Adour Karagulian on 99880226 & Shoushig Bakalian on 99667820. Seats are limited and tickets will be given out on a first-come first serve basis.
  • Saturday 7 February, 2009 at 9:15 pm on RIK 1 - Cyprus chooses its Eurovision representative. Gibrahayer have a contestant in the person of Gore Melian.
  • Sunday 10 May, 2009 - Pilgrimage to the Turkish-occupied Armenian Monastery of Sourp Magar, organised by the Office of the Armenian Office of MP Vartkes Mahdessian.

  • Computer problems ? - DIAL 99437073

    K Tahta Annual "Quiz Night" - Saturday 21 February 2009 at 8:00pm.‏




    Saturday 21 February 2009 at 8:00 pm

    Twyford Church of England High School,

    Twyford Crescent, Acton, London W3 9PP


    Tickets inclusive of dinner

    £16.00 Adults — £10.00 Students (14–16)

    A very popular event!

    Book early to avoid


    Tickets available from:

    Please click on the attachment for the event flyer and booking details.


    Pilgrimage to Deir Zor - 19 to 30th April 2009‏


    Eng. Haig Lepedjian Aytselets "Nor Or"-i Khmpakradoun‏



    Monday, 26 January 2009

    Belated Thank you - Dikran Abrahamian BA MD

    Dear Friend,
    Thank you for endorsing the petition Justice Against Violence.
    You may have noticed the statement of Armenian intellectuals who responded to the Turkish intellectuals' "I Apologize". It is probably an insignificant step forward during these murky days when there is so much at stake. Naturally, we can't forget the expressions of "friendship and brotherhood" by the Young Turks a century ago. It culminated in the Genocide of the Armenians.
    Is the statement of the Armenian Intellectuals a matter of courteousy or looking beyond while remaining vigilant.
    I would kindly ask you to have a look at the poll that appears on the right hand side of the home page of I shall be using the data collected - along others - to write a brief note in touching upon the Turkish intellectuals' on-line statement, the measured response of the Armenian intellectuals, Hrant Dink's message and what we should be looking for.
    It is kindly requested that you have a look at the poll and cast your choice if you have not already done so. Similarly have a look at the Statement of the Armenian Intellectuals.
    Dikran Abrahamian BA MD

    Armenian News‏

    Jan 20 2009

    The Armenian and Azeri presidents, Serzh Sargsyan and Ilham Aliyev,
    will meet in the near future, the Armenian presidential press service
    told Interfax on Tuesday.

    "The participants in a meeting between the co-chairmen of the OSCE
    Minsk Group for the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and
    Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan reached an agreement on organizing a
    meeting between the Armenian and Azeri presidents in the near future,"
    the press service said.

    Presidential press secretary Samvel Farmanian did not specify when
    a meeting between Sargsyan and Aliyev could take place and where.

    Yury Merzlyakov, the Russian co-chairman of the OSCE Minsk Group, told
    journalists in Azerbaijan on Monday that Baku had given its consent to
    such a meeting during the traditional annual economic forum in Davos.

    "The main result [of the talks in Baku] is Azerbaijan's consent to hold
    a new meeting between the Azeri and Armenian presidents in the near
    future, apparently on the sidelines of the Davos economic forum. When
    we are in Yerevan tomorrow, we expect to obtain confirmation from
    Armenia," Merzlyakov said at a news briefing in Baku on Monday.

    The Armenian presidential press service also said the participants in
    the Tuesday meeting also discussed certain aspects of the current stage
    in the ongoing negotiations on solving the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

    "The co-chairmen informed the president of Armenia about results of
    the Baku meetings," it said.
    Armenia Seeks Anti-Crisis Aid From Russia
    By Emil Danielyan

    Armenia is seeking to obtain a sizable loan from Russia in an effort to
    alleviate the negative impact of the global financial crisis on its
    economy, senior officials in Yerevan and Moscow confirmed on Friday.

    `We have approached Russia to attract financial resources,' Artur
    Javadian, chairman of the Central Bank of Armenia (CBA), told
    journalists. `That issue is currently in the discussion stage.'

    `These will be additional resources for country's economy,' he said
    without elaborating.

    Russian Finance Minister Alexey Kudrin likewise announced that Yerevan
    is seeking a `stabilization credit' from Moscow. `We are now holding
    negotiations with Armenia,' he said, according to the RIA-Novosti news

    Both Kudrin and Javadian declined to give any figures, saying that the
    Russian-Armenian talks are not yet over.

    The Yerevan daily `Haykakan Zhamanak' claimed on Friday that the
    Armenian government has sharply lowered its aid expectations from Russia
    and would now settle for $170 million. The paper reported earlier that
    Prime Minister Tigran Sarkisian discussed the issue with his Russian
    counterpart Vladimir Putin during a December visit to Moscow.

    The Armenian government is also seeking hundreds of millions of dollars
    in aid and low-interest loans from Western lending institutions and the
    World Bank in particular. It hopes to secure a $250 million loan package
    from the World Bank that would be channeled into Armenia's small and
    medium-sized businesses through local commercial banks. The
    Washington-based bank appears ready to disburse at least some of the
    requested sum.

    Foreign assistance will be vital for the success of the government
    efforts to minimize the fallout from the global economic recession.
    Armenia's economic growth slowed significantly in the fourth quarter of
    2008 amid falling cash inflows from abroad and an increasingly obvious
    downturn in its construction sector. The sector had helped to keep the
    growth rate in double digits in the previous months and years.

    The authorities are particularly worried about an anticipated drop in
    large-scale remittances from Armenians working abroad, another driving
    force behind the country's economic recovery. Russia is the principle
    source of those remittances.

    Noyan Tapan
    Jan 21, 2009

    ANKARA, JANUARY 21, NOYAN TAPAN. When touching upon the Armenian Cause
    pupils in Turkey's schools instead of the expression "ungrounded" or
    "the so-called Armenian Genocide" henceforth will use the expression
    "the events of 1915." According to the reports of Turkish media,
    Turkey's Ministry of Education made such a decision. The change,
    in particular, regards the expressions in the history textbook for
    the 8th form pupils.

    It should be mentioned that as far back as on July 3, 2007 Turkey's
    government sent a circular letter to all Turkey's ministries,
    structures attached to them, governor's offices, municipalities,
    Supreme Educational Council, judicial structures, and Armed Forces
    General Headquarters, which prohibited using the expression "the
    so-called Armenian Genocide" in the country. Instead it was demanded
    using the expressions "the events of 1915" or "Armenian allegations
    regarding the events of 1915."

    Turkish Daily News
    January 20, 2009 Tuesday

    The Anatolian district of Kadykoy now hosts a "Speakers Corner"
    similar to the one in Londons Hyde Park. The Speakers Corner was
    established by the community center and allows those who want to
    voice their opinions to speak publicly on various issues

    "The platform is for all people to have the right to speak. We aim
    to expand the Speakers Corner to all neighborhoods in Istanbul,"
    said Nuri Gunay, a representative of the community center.

    Those who take the stage mostly speak about the Ergenekon operation,
    an alleged gang said to have plotted to bring down the government by
    instigating a military coup, Israels attack on Gaza, the economic
    crisis and the rising price of gas. Students who ask for equal
    education rights and mothers who want school scholarships for their
    children, are just a couple of examples of those who take the stage.

    The platform includes a microphone and sound speakers and is located
    in front of the Armenian synagogue on Muhurday Avenue. While people
    are now able to voice their opinions publicly, there is still no
    immunity from the law and police must consider the speech lawful.
    [this is a warning not to infringe section 301 - quite poignant in front of a monument left
    behind by the Armenians]