Aram I Condemns Election Disinformation

ANTELIAS–Lebanon (Aztag)–The Catholicosate of the Holy See of Cilicia issued an announcement Saturday–condemning recent Lebanese television and press reports regarding His Holiness Aram I–Catholicos of the Holy Cilicia’s posturing regarding the upcoming Lebanese parliamentary elections.

Recently one television channel and certain candidates during their campaign speeches have criticized the United Armenian Bloc slate of candidates–and have also targeted His Holiness Aram I–Catholicos of the Holy See of Cilicia by saying that the pontiff is "keeping equal distance from all Armenian candidates."

The Catholicosate said that troubled election campaigns do not justify the skewing of facts–especially condemning the disinformation relayed regarding Aram I’s position–after his meeting and endorsement of the United Armenian Bloc slate.

The United Armenian Bloc is a slate of Armenian candidates put forth by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation and the Social Democratic Hunchakian Party–in cooperation with all religious and organizational leaders in Lebanon. The introduction of this slate has caused discord within the Hunchakian party and the Armenia Democratic League (Ramkavar party)–with the latter opting to not take part in a slate representing the entire community.

The announcement took issue with the atmosphere created during the parliamentary election campaign–during which the announcement pointed out "moral principles and norms are ignored."

Election campaign rhetoric–the Catholicosate announcement said–has taken on a tone that is deemed foreign to national values and understandings–and "opens the door to internal tensions and schisms."

"Several days ago–the Catholicos urged the executive bodies of the three political parties to stay away from the dangerous atmosphere created by the election campaign–and–once and for all–to cease the tone which could create inter-party discord long after the elections–thus undermining the internal unity–collective will and active participation in the Lebanese political life," informed the announcement.

The Catholicosate warned that recent campaign efforts by some candidates–as well as media reports are misrepresenting the statemen’s of the Catholicos and are attributing untruths to the pontiff–through their analyses of the Aram I’s patriarchal suggestions to the community.

"This dangerous situation is unacceptable. This and other efforts are aimed at creating schisms within the Armenian community," warned the announcement.

In conclusion the announcement urged the Lebanese-Armenian community to stay away from attempts to undermine the unity and collectivity of the community and to rally behind the complete interests and rights–putting aside all personal and narrow interests.

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