Momentum Builds For ANCA Advocacy Day In Sacramento And State Capitol Genocide Commemoration

LOS ANGELES—Activists from across the Golden State will join the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region for Advocacy Day and the Armenian Genocide Commemorations in the California State Legislature. The Legislature floor commemorations and the Advocacy Day will take place on Thursday, April 15, 2010 in Sacramento and will be part of a series of commemorative activities slated for the 95th Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide.

As we continue to work toward the recognition of the Armenian Genocide nationally and internationally, it is important to focus our attention closer to home, where the leaders in our State Capitol have, year after year, honored the martyrs of the Armenian Genocide,” stated Karnig Dukmajian, ANCA-WR State Affairs Committee Member. “Our presence in Sacramento is vital, particularly in the face of the increased Turkish lobby in California,” he added.

Both chambers of the California Legislature will hold commemorations for the Armenian Genocide during floor sessions. The commemoration ceremony will include the introduction of a resolution honoring the victims of the Armenian Genocide as well as an invocation from Armenian clergy and a flag procession and pledge of allegiance led by the Homenetmen Scouts. A reception, hosted by Senator Joe Simitian and Assembly Members Anthony Portantino and Kevin de Leon, will follow the floor commemoration.

Assemblymembers Anthony Portantino and Kevin de Leon will host the iWitness photo exhibit in the Rotunda of the Capitol Building. The photo exhibit is a photographic project that began in 1995, when artists Ara Oshagan and Levon Parian began documenting survivors of the Armenian Genocide. The iWitness photo exhibit will be displayed at the State Capitol on second floor Rotunda on April 15th and also April 19th through April 30th of this year.

“The iWitness photo exhibit will be especially poignant this year, as we approach the 95th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. Many of the survivors that were photographed are no longer with us today.” stated ANCA-WR Government Relations Director Lerna Shirinian. “With the passing of House Resolution 252 in the House Foreign Affairs Committee, it is important that activists travel to Sacramento to raise awareness of the Armenian Genocide and fight to end the cycle of genocide,” she added.

During Advocacy Day, Armenian Americans and anti-genocide advocates will help raise awareness among California legislators regarding the history of the Armenian Genocide, the present-day consequences of this crime against humanity and other issues of concern to the Armenian American community. For further information please contact Haig Hovsepian at haig@anca.org or Lerna Shirinian at lerna@anca.org.

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