LATAKIA (ArmRadio)—Many of Kessab’s Armenians have found refuge at St. Astvatsatsin Church in Latakia and the nearby school, Member of the Armenian National Assembly Samvel Farmanyan told Tert.am. Farmanyan left for Syria on March 24 with a group of lawmakers.
On Wednesday the Armenian members of parliament met with Kessab Armenians. “I should say the impression was shocking. The situation is like the one we have read about in textbooks and literature about the Armenian Genocide, in the memories of Genocide survivors,” Samvel Farmanyan said.
The Governor, the Mayor and other high-ranking officials in Latakia have assured the Armenian delegation that the Syrian government is taking all possible measures to ensure the return of Kessab Armenians to their native lands.
Farmanyan said Kessab Armenians were encouraged by the visit of the parliamentary delegation. “We conveyed a very important message to them: this is a problem of the whole Armenian nation, not an individual sector of it,” he added.
“These are tragic events, which cannot but bring forth obvious parallels with the events of 100 years ago – the Armenian Genocide,” the lawmaker said.
Upon their return to Armenia, the members of parliament will present their proposals to the National Assembly and the government, after which the future steps will be determined and the details of possible aid will be worked out.
Meanwhile in Yerevan, representatives of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation of Syria Nerses Sardisian and Karo Yuzbashian met with journalists to speak about the Kessab events and the future of Syrian Armenians. They have hope that Armenians will again return to Kessab.
The Syrian Armenians stressed that Turks opened the border and helped the terrorists enter Armenian-populated Kessab. They are urging the international community to condemn Turkey’s actions.
“The Turkish factor in Kessab was apparent both in their political support and their contribution to the incursion of armed units into Syria. The Armenian authorities can use this fact to reveal the real face of Turkey ahead of the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide,” Karo Yuzbashian said.
Nerses Sargisian said several Armenian families did not manage to leave the city, and their fate is unknown. Most of those who managed to escape have found refuge in Latakia and must now wait with uncertainty.
Will this lead to another inflow of Syrian Armenians to Armenia? Karo Yuzbashian said the first direction of every Syrian Armenia leaving the country is Armenia or Artsakh. The farmers settle in Arsakh, while craftsmen prefer Armenia.
The Syrian Armenians stressed it’s important for international structures to condemn the role of Turkey in the recent events like the Armenian National Committees in Europe and in the US have done.