"HOMENETMEN HAS A CRITICAL AND ARDUOUS MISSION IN ARMENIA TO DISCIPLINE AND EDUCATE YOUTH TO BECOME FREE–JUST AND MORALLY UPRIGHT CITIZENS OF A FREE COUNTRY."
YEREVAN (Yerkir)–Eighty five delegates from fifteen countries came together in Yerevan for the opening of Homenetmen’s 8th General Convention held in Armenia for the first time.
Present were ARF Bureau Representative Hrant Markarian–Members of the Supreme Body of ARF Armenia–high level government officials–ministers and delegates–Bishop Arshag Kachatrian representing Catholicos Aram II–Mountainous Karabagh Republic’s Minister of Education and Culture Armen Sarkissian–and Lebanon’s Sports and Youth Minister Sebouh Hovnanian.
Opening the meeting–regional executive chairman of Homenetmen Armenia Pakrat Yessayan noted that the holding of Homenetmen’s General Convention in Armenia is a monumental event–only second to the reinstatement of Homenetmen in Armenia in 1989.
"We were deprived of the ability to operate in our country–but with 70 years of service and persistence in the Diaspora–our organization–by way of this General convention–completely unites with our homeland today," stressed the chairman of the Homenetmen Central Executive Puzant Torigian.
On behalf of President Robert Kocharian–Razmig Davoyan welcomed the convention stating that the present government of the Republic of Armenia not only welcomes Homenetmen’s activities–but also encourages them in Armenia because of Homenetmen’s youth oriented–pan-Armenian nature.
"It is the first time the Homenetmen is holding its general convention in Armenia; it’s this fact that will not allow me to reject daily events and the current environment–and resort to speaking in abstracts," revealed ARF Bureau Representative Hrant Markarian in his greeting remarks.
"As you know–Parliamentary elections in Armenia just concluded–and each and every election–specifically for our country–presents an opportunity to improve social conditions–clean up government structure–and to create the foundations for development. I regret–however–that we lost–once again–the occasion to do that. I do not wish to open your meeting with bitterness; on the contrary–I’d like to guide you to reality because you–as Homenetmen–can struggle exactly for what we attempted to achieve," asserted Markarian.
Homenetmen–as the largest Armenian organization–stressed Markarian–has a critical and arduous mission in Armenia to discipline and educate youth to become free–just and morally upright citizens of a free country.
The agenda for the delegates representing approximately 60,000 members worldwide will include the fundamental direction of future Homenetmen activities–development of the Armenian scout movement–and feasibility of increased athletic activities in the Diaspora.