ARF Bureau Member Boghikian Denied Entry Visa to Armenia

YEREVAN (Yerevan News Agency)–Armenian Revolutionary Federation Bureau member Apo Boghikian was denied an entry visa to Armenia–becoming the second prominent ARF leader in one week to be denied entry into Armenia.

Former ARF Bureau member and manager of the Alik newspaper in Iran–Albert Ajemian was also denied an entry visa to Armenia.

The Yerevan news agency asked Armenia’s foreign ministry for an explanation.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Arsen Gasparyan did not comment on the matter.

In addressing the Ajemian matter–Gasparyan stated that explanations regarding entry permits were not within the realm of diplomatic practice–adding that each and every embassy had the right to refuse granting an entry visa to any individual. He also cited the mode of operation of embassies from other countries.

Ajemian–who is also the chairman of the ARF Central Committee of Northern Iran and a member of the Central Armenian National Committee was refused entry without an explanation.

Gasparyan was reminded about the now infamous "black list" issued by the foreign ministry in 1995 which denied entry to numerous ARF leaders and other community members including Ajemian and Boghikian.

Gasparyan stated that Ajemian’s case should not be tied to the so-called "black list," since other individuals on that list were recently permitted entry into Armenia.

These slew of rejection comes following a highly-publicized meeting last week between ARF Bureau members and Levon Ter-Petrosyan’s representatives–the results of which could be manifested in these rejections.

Although news of entry-visa denial to Boghikian came following Gasparyan’s "clarification," nevertheless–the foreign ministry did not elucidate the matter.

Yerevan news agency assessed that it would be difficult to believe that Armenia’s diplomats abroad did not consult their leaders prior to taking decisions on such sensitive issues.

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