ARF Bureau Executive Director Ara Demirdjian Passes Away

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Ara Demirdjian

Ara Demirdjian

YEREVAN–The Armenian Revolutionary Federation Bureau on Wednesday announced the passing of longtime member and ARF Bureau’s executive director Unger Ara Demirdjian, who passed away on November 16 after a short illness.

On behalf of the ARF rank and file, the Bureau offered its condolences to Demirdjian’s family, relatives and friends.

Demirdjian was born on January 18, 1948 in Kessab, where he received his primary education at the Kessab Armenian School. He then attended the Karen Jeppe Jemaran (college) in Aleppo and later earned a degree in political science from Haigazian University in Lebanon.

Demirdjian also attended the ARF School and with noted intellectual and ARF leader Hratch Dasnabedian officiating his oath, he joined the ranks of the party in 1972. He was also a member of the ARF Zavarian Student Organization, serving as its chairman.

He taught Arabic in Beirut’s Suren Khanamirian School and the Neshan Palandjian Jemaran.

He also served as the secretary of the Armenian bloc in the Lebanese parliament. From 1977 until his death he served as the ARF Bureau’s executive director. In that capacity he moved to Greece from 1986 to 1996, when the Bureau was headquartered in Athens.

He was elected to serve on the Executive Board of the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia during the Representative Assembly in 2008 and was re-elected to that body several times over.

Demirdjian played a critical role in the founding and formation of the ARF Youth Organization of Lebanon. During his tenure he has worked closely with ARF leaders, such as Kevork Arakelian, Sarkis Aznavourian, Apo Ashdjian, Hratch Dasnabedian and Hrair Maroukhian.

In 1975, Demirdjian married Zarmig Geokdjian, whose sudden passing in 2014 caused him great pain and became a defining loss. He has three children, Bedo, Sarhad and Lala and three grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, November 19 at 1 p.m. at the Antelias Monastery in Lebanon.

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