YEREVAN (Mediamax)—Director of National Archives of Armenia Amatuni Virabyan stated today that during the visit of Pope Francis to Armenia, the Armenian party will request permission to study documents on the Armenian nation and the Armenian Genocide kept in the Vatican Secret Archives.
“The Vatican Secret Archives are considered one of the largest in the world; they contain a great number of documents on countries and nations that Vatican contacted with. Armenian people had contacts with Vatican since 3rd, 4th centuries, and these Archives keep plenty of documents on our history, which have not been revealed or published,” Virabyan said.
According to Virabyan, these documents cover relations between the Armenian people and the Vatican, Armenian history and culture, and the Armenian Genocide.
“In the end of 19th century, a representative of the Pope in the Ottoman Empire reported on the Empire’s Christians to the Vatican, particularly on the condition of Armenians and the persecution they suffered,” said Virabyan.
He noted that the National Archives of Armenia possess copies of all the documents that the Vatican revealed to researchers. They are mainly in French and Latin languages, and Armenian experts are currently studying them.
As of now, the secret documents of Vatican Archives can be revealed to researchers only by the Pope’s permission.
Virabyan believes that the strong relationship between the Armenian and Catholic Churches would allow requesting the Pope’s permission to study these secret documents, especially after the special Holy Mass on the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide held in April 2015 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican.