ANCA WR Meets With Congresswoman Diane Watson

CALIFORNIA CONGRESSWOMAN REAFFIRMS SUPPORT FOR GENOCIDE RESOLUTION

LOS ANGELES–Members of the local Armenian community from the Hollywood and surrounding areas recently joined representatives of the Armenian National Committee of America–Western Region (ANCA-WR)–and Hollywood ANC in a meeting with US Representative Diane Watson (CA-33). The meeting focused on issues of serious concern to the Congresswoman’s Armenian American constituents.

Hollywood ANC Chair Karekin Khanjian presented Congresswoman Watson a copy of Peter Balakian’s bestselling book "The Burning Tigris: The Armenian Genocide and America’s Response."

ANCA-WR Executive Director Ardashes Kassakhian thanked the Congresswoman for her consistent support on a number of key Armenian-American issues–including her support of the Genocide Resolution currently pending in the US Congress.

The Genocide Resolution–known as House Resolution 193–was introduced in 2003 by Representatives George Radanovich (R-Fresno) and Adam Schiff (D-Glendale). The legislation calls on Congress to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations’ Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocides. The ANCA-WR has been urging members of Congress to bring the issue up with the leadership of Congress and urge them to schedule a vote. Last month–the ANCA launched a nationwide grassroots postcard campaign directed at the House and Senate.

ANCA-WR Board Member and longtime Hollywood ANC activist and resident Garo Ispendjian told Congresswoman Watson that there are a great number of active Armenian organizations based in her Congressional District. Watson’s 33rd Congressional district includes most of the area known as "Little Armenia," as well as one of the oldest Armenian private schools in the nation–Rose and Alex Pilibos Armenian School–and numerous other cultural centers–and organizational headquarters.

"We look forward to working with the Congresswoman on those issues affecting Armenian-Americans of Hollywood–and thank her for her steadfast support of our issues in Congress," commented ANC Hollywood Chair Karekin Khanjian. "We also look forward to having Congresswoman Watson visit Rose and Alex Pilibos Armenian School to witness firsthand the tremendous positive impact that this institution is having in our community and in Hollywood."

California’s 33rd Congressional district is one of the most diverse districts in the country and includes areas such as "Thai Town" and "Korea Town." As such–Congresswoman Watson promised to help build bridges between the various communities in her district and expressed a particular interest in learning about the Armenian culture and heritage.

The Congresswoman is a member of the Armenian Issues Caucus in Congress–and serves on the very influential House International Relations Committee and the Government Reform Committee.

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