Armenian Official Suggests Renaming Country

Armenia’s Minister of Education and Science, Armen Ashotyan

YEREVAN (Arka)—Armenia’s education and science minister Armen Ashotyan proposed onFriday that the official name of the country – the Republic of Armenia – be changed to the Republic of Eastern Armenia.

Historically, Armenia has been divided into Eastern and Western Armenia, Eastern Armenia being part of the Persian Empire until the beginning of the 19th century, before it became part of the Russian Empire. Part of Eastern Armenia later became the First Republic for two short years before it was seized by the Bolsheviks to become the Soviet Armenian Republic. In 1991, it was proclaimed as the independent Republic of Armenia.

Western Armenia is now part of Turkey. Its population was annihilated by the government of Turkey in 1915-1923 in the first genocide of the last century. Ashotyan’s argument for his proposed name change is to convey the reality of the Armenian nation: that Armenia is not whole without Western Armenia.

The Armenian Revolutionary Federation’s Political Affairs Director Giro Manoyan responded to Ashotyan’s suggestion in an open letter. In his response, Manoyan made a suggestion of his own, saying, “If Mr. Ashotyan would like to pursue ‘justice and self-determination’ for the Armenian nation, then – before turning to the constitution and the Republic’s declaration of independence – Mr. Ashotyan and the Republican Party can start by rescinding the Armenian government’s ratification of the Armenian-Turkish protocols, by defining the official border between Armenia and Turkey to be the true border set by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, and by adopting the realization of that border as a government responsibility, among other tangible, more effective measures.”

Ashotyan, who is deputy chairman of the ruling Republican Party of Armenia, first came out with this proposal in 2005.


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  1. ED said:

    This step is long overdue. Eastern Armenia should be the legal successor of the first Republic of Armenia – This mean to show that indeed modern Turkey does still occupies parts of Eastern Armenia too!

    Such a move would be the right and a bold move. This would be a right decision and a way to honor and keep the memory of the victims of Armenia Genocide and destruction of Armenia culture heritage by Turkey alive. As longs as Turkey does continue its denial policy and falsification of Armenian history! .

  2. Mt Ararat said:

    A first step is a better than do nothing and wait till central government starts actively playing Turkish Kurds and there jailed leader against Armenians. Already jailed Kurdish leader being brain washed by Turkish Islamic govermonst by abusing Islamic religion…

    This has to be done for many justified and political historical reasons. Otherwise e.g. a Young Kurdish child borne today would he/she think tomorrow, “Turkish Kurdistan” or even maybe “Kurdistan Republic” has been always the borders drown by Kurdish political parties etc.. as if A nation “Armenia” never would had lived in today”s East Turkey and had never territorial claims against Turkish state

  3. GeorgeMardig said:

    It makes sence, finally somebody got it, if Diasporan Armenians want a pro West Armenia, than let the West help them recover the Western Armenia from Turkey and have their pro West Armenia. What does not make sence that Eastern Armenia wouldn’t have existed and will not exist had not been for Russia, to come from diaspora and exacerbate the good relations with Russia under the pretext of Democracy, help from ONGs, etc.. etc.. that the only aim is to destroy the harmony of Eastern Armenia. The EU and US will allways sacrifice Armenia on behalf of Turkey for Geoploitics and $$$€€€€€$$$$€€€€

  4. Hagop hagopian said:

    It’s about time. It is imperative that the name should be changed to the Republic of Eastern Armenia. That would pose a question to any person living on this planet where is, or what happened to the Republic of Western Armenia. This is brilliant.

  5. Shahe said:

    Both statements made by both respected Ashotyan and Manoyan are true and should be backed through bilateral coordination and a common diplomatic communique bearing in mind the practical and executable aspects of a world we live in, putting aside monopolistic attitude and our capacity and resources to achieve them over a projected time span. We have to consider too, that if what the American noble class had respectfully and rightly decided for Armenia and the Armenians, let alone for the troubled nations of the world, the world would have been a paradise. Noble people do not govern the world. We, every single Armenian without exception, both within and outside Armenia, have to learn to respect any existing government of the Republic of Armenia, just as I expect every single Armenian to respect the short-lived Zankezour 1st Independent State established by Karekin Nejteh (which, by the way, every Armenian should learn and very highly credit it, as he was the legend who opposed the annexation of the three provinces of Nakhichevan, Zankezour and Artsakh, under his commandment then, but could not hold except unto Zankezour, which explains Nakhichevan physically being detached from the Republic of Azerbaijan during the Soviet era and presently, due to opposition to support his mission for defense), the Independent Armenian State of 1918, the Soviet Armenian State of 1922 and the present government of Armenia, which is conducting an extremely lauded diplomatic policy (haut politique), the most respected among all historically recorded Armenian kingdoms and so-called Republics over thousands of years. I urge every single Armenian, starting from 0.1% to 100% Armenian blood, to stop their nonconstructive declarations and to make sure that any statement be well balanced so that it does not create unstability or harm the integrity of our diplomacy. We can learn to avoid disrespectful adventures of the sort artificially instigated, such as the one by Raffi Hovhannessian in recent times. Any improvement can and should be addressed constructively (garoutsoghagan vojov). It is not through our negative attitude during the Soviet Regime that it was toppled. We have started to learn to govern a country after the difficult Soviet ‘crash course of 75 years’ in governance, which history has to thank for. When opposition achieves a share or lion’s share to govern our Republic, we shall welcome wholeheartedly and yet once again add value with the criticism and comments through constructive avenues, rather than criticize meaninglessly. We shall not choose bloodshed to achieve our vision of an idealized and prosperous respected Republic with minimum of flaws, claiming that we are more intelligent and that we understand better than the other party (or parties), . Successful diplomats, whoever they are, achieve their goals through diplomacy, rather than declaration of monopolistic views.

  6. Harutik said:

    This news development can start a healthy debate for the motion to rename the Armenian state has both good and bad implications in my opinion. Good: It automatically places an indirect claim on Western Armenia and revives its memory. Bad: Creates a further psychological divide between Eastern and Western Armenia.

  7. Sokimag said:

    It isn’t a bad idea at all. That would show people that today’s Armenia is only a tiny part of what Armenia used to be. I prefer if it’s keeped Armenia, but I won’t complain if they change it.

  8. Armenian said:

    How about instead of renaming the country and further isolating ourselves, let’s take a look at our own problems and work on fixing them, namely corruption and the alarming rate of emigration.

    I can’t wait to read how those two things are just “Western talking points” and aren’t as important to our survival in the next 20-40 years.

  9. Gezi-ist said:

    I think if the normalization of ties between Turkey and Armenia is implemented, the borders should be set at the Kars or Moscow. What will happen when there is an influx of Kurds and other smaller Black Sea Ethnic groups get absorbed in the Wilsonian borders? Will they be killed or forcefully expelled? How can Armenia be able to manage to create an economically strong political system when the current political system in Armenia is oligarchic when the supposed Wilsonian borders are established.

    By the way, I am not a revisionist when it comes to the Armenian question, I believe in one: ratifying the Kars or Moscow treaty. Two: acknowledgement of casualties on both ends (no excuse for avoiding concessions). Three: economic concessions.

  10. Vahe said:

    I don’t fully agree with Giro Manoyan’s approach , since both proposals are detrimental issues today.

  11. arziv said:

    It is long overdue. Armenian ancestral lands can not be legally apportioned to the turkish state created in 1918-19 after the usurpation, pillage, rape , violation and forceful occupation of the historical lands of Armenia . The turkish state has reneged on the protocols, thank god. The government must now discard into a trash bin those trecherous pieces of paper.

  12. Viken E Krikorian said:

    Totally agree Mr.A.Ashotyan’s proposal, and I back it fully.

    Highlighting actual western borders would further enlighten everyones perceptions of the true Armenia which has been absorbed mainly within Turkey.

  13. Gabriel Varjabedian said:

    y yo que pensaba que las “declaraciones veraniegas” se daban en este hemisferio, pero parece que el intenso frìo del càucaso,les afecta la perspectiva ,con tanto viento y nieve…..
    Si lo tomamos en tono jocoso, es como un globo sonda “intro”para ver què pasa y de paso zafar de tanto zafarrancho con la diàspora…
    Esa diàspora tan molesta para el Partido Republicano , que jode tanto con el reconocimiento ,con las fronteras, con los territorios ,con los derechos ,con la transparencia ,con la emigración ,con los oligarcas…..

    Quizà mejor serìa “bajarse” de tanto lìo y declarar la repùblica oriental, asì nos evitamos de tanto dale y dale…y en especial de todo vìnculo.

    Si me lo tomo en serio , es un verdadero atropello a la naciòn ,y a la conciencia històrica.

    El pueblo armenio siempre ocupò sus tierras ancestrales ,y en ese sentido, quedò entre los imperios de turno.
    . Asì que el CONCEPTO y la ACTITUD, del señor MINISTRO, debe ser UNA NACION UN ESTADO.

    Este ha sido el derrotero forjado por los revolucionarios propios que comenzaron reclamando derechos y engendrando el sentido de naciòn en el siglo 19, a los cuales no sòlo nuestro pueblo adhirió sino todos los Balcanes y pueblos del mar negro etc.

    Es un irrespeto estas “sugerencias”,o profunda ignorancia polìtica,viniendo precisamente de un ministro de educación.
    Y ya que estamos hablando de lìneas fronterizas y de referencias cardinales ,serìa bueno saber porquè el Estado armenio, no es interlocutor en las Naciones Unidas presentando la controversia del acto de genocidio perpetrado en 1915,y sus consecuencias. Serà que desde 1991,Armenia nada tiene para reclamarle a Turquía?
    ¿O realmente no le interesa, porque fueron insucesos ocurridos en el oeste..?
    A todas luces,es un bien mandado, para irritar la dignidad general.

  14. Gabriel Varjabedian said:

    …and I thought that the ” summer statements” were given in this hemisphere , but it seems that the intense cold of the Caucasus, affects their perspective , with both wind and snow …..
    If we take it jokingly , as a probe is ” intro” balloon to see what happens and pass both disengage from the diaspora rumpus …
    That diaspora so upset for the GOP , which fucks both with recognition , with borders, with territories, rights , transparency, with emigration, the oligarchs …..

    Perhaps better would be ” downloaded ” from the fuss and declare the Eastern Republic, and we avoid both give and give … and especially around Link.

    If I take it seriously, it’s a real affront to the nation, and conscience històrica .

    The Armenian people have always occupied their ancestral lands, and in that sense , was among the empires of the day.
    . So the concept and ATTITUDE, Mr. MINISTER be A NATION STATE .

    This has been the road map forged by themselves revolutionaries who began claiming rights and engendering a sense of nation in the 19th century, which not only our people but I joined the Balkans and the black sea villages etc .

    It is disrespectful these ” suggestions ” or profound political ignorance , coming just a minister of education.
    And while we’re talking about border -lines and cardinal references would be nice to know why the Armenian state is not party to the United Nations presenting the controversy act of genocide in 1915 , and its consequences. Be that since 1991 , Armenia has nothing to complain to Turkey?
    Or does not really care , because they were insucesos occurred in the west .. ?
    Clearly, is a well- ordered , to irritate the general dignity.

  15. Hratch said:

    Then what would happen if an actual Republic of Western Armenia were to be established one day? Would that mean that we will have two competing states forever? (or maybe 3 including Artsakh)

  16. Hratch said:

    I propose that the official surname of the minister – Ashotyan – to be changed to Ashodian.