LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – Last week, members of the Armenian National Committee of America-Nevada (ANCA-NV) Chapter met with U.S. Representative Dean Heller (R-NV02) during his first visit to the Saint Garabed Armenian Apostolic Church and Cultural Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Razmik Libarian, Garabed Bedirian, Armen Anooshian, Andy Armenian, and Garo Armenian were joined by ANCA-NV Chapter Chairperson, Ara Shirinian.
Nevada Armenian-American community volunteers discussed key issues with Congressman Heller, including H. Res. 252, the Armenian Genocide resolution currently in the U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. foreign assistance, and efforts to promote regional security in the Caucasus through peaceful resolution of the Nagorno Karabagh conflict.
“We would like to thank Congressman Heller for recently becoming a co-sponsor of the Armenian Genocide resolution, and we welcome his commitment for continuing to work with him on this, and other issues of concern to the Armenian-American community of Nevada,” stated ANCA-NV Chapter Chairman Ara Shirinian.
In June of this year, Congressman Heller became the 143rd co-sponsor of H. Res. 252. In a letter sent to members of the Nevada Armenian-American community he stated, “For too long, the U.S. has given in to Turkey’s bullying and congressional efforts to recognize the victims of genocide have fallen short.”
“Now is the time to reassert our moral leadership in the fight against genocide, and for this reason I am a proud co-sponsor of H.Res. 252,” he continued.
Members of the community also briefed Congressman Heller and his staff on the status of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and emphasized the importance of democratic principles of self-determination in the peaceful resolution of the conflict. They also expressed deep concerns regarding Azerbaijan’s continuing and recent violations of the long-standing cease-fire agreement.
As a two term member of Congress representing parts of Las Vegas and northern Nevada, Heller previously served as Nevada’s Secretary of State. He currently sits on the powerful US House Ways and Means Committee, which is charged with drafting tax legislation, and bills affecting revenue raising measures. Congressman Heller has also been appointed as a Deputy Whip, and assigned to the Republican Policy Committee by the House Leadership Team.
With strong bipartisan support, H.Res. 252 calls upon the President to ensure that the foreign policy of the United States reflects appropriate understanding and sensitivity concerning issues related to human rights, ethnic cleansing, and genocide documented in the United States record relating to the Armenian Genocide, and for other purposes.
The Armenian National Committee of America-Nevada Chapter is a grassroots, advocacy organization advancing issues of concern to the area’s Armenian American community in Nevada, as well as promoting the community’s civic engagement at the local, state, and federal level.
PHOTO CAPTION: (from left to right) Razmik Libarain, Garbed Bedirian, Armen Anoushian, Congressman Heller, Ara Shirinian, Andy Armenian, and Garo Armenian.