Turkey University of Washington Collaborate on Turkish Studies

SEATTLE–Wash.–Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region sources have obtained documen’s detailing ongoing negotiations between the University of Washington and the government of Turkey to establish a "Turkish Studies Endowment Fund" for the purpose of creating a Turkish studies program to begin operations in the fall of 1998.

Under the terms of the proposed contract–the government of Turkey would provide the initial $250,000 "gift" to the University of Washington. The government of Turkey would also be obliged to make two more annual contributions of $250,000 to the fund. Once established–the program would be housed in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies.

According to the "Draft Agreement," the purpose of the fund would be to teach Turkish language and history–facilitate the exchange of scholars between the University and the Republic of Turkey and support the acquisition of publications and library material on Turkish and Ottoman language–culture and topics.

An advisory committee of three individuals would also be created to oversee the distribution of income from the fund. Included in the committee would be a scholar appointed by the Director of the Jackson School of International Studies–who will serve as chair of the committee. The agreement also indicates that Dr. Resat Kasaba–the Jackson School’s Director of International Studies would be initially appointed to the oversight committee. According to the agreement–search for "full-time faculty position is underway."

"The Turkish government’s past behavior clearly indicates that–cleverly hidden beneath these seemingly innocuous references about teaching Turkish and Ottoman history and culture–is the Turkish Government’s unscrupulous plan to falsify the facts concerning the continuing crime of Genocide committed against the Armenia’s," stated Vicken Sonentz-Papazian–ANCA-WR Executive Director.

"The ANC has begun educating administrators–academicians and elected officials about the government of Turkey’s venal designs for the program and calls upon all concerned Armenian Americans to contact University of Washington President Richard McCormick–to express their concerns and objections regarding the establishment of such a program," concluded Sonentz-Papazian.

Letters to President McCormick should be sent to University of Washington–Office of the President–301 Gerberding Hall– Seattle–WA 98195. E-Mail messages may be sent to President McCormick at rlm@u.washington.edu.

The complete text of the draft agreement is in the Archives section of the Asbarez website www.asbarez.com .

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