WASHINGTON–The Armenian Genocide Resolution (H.Res.106) reached an important milestone today with the number of cosponsors for the human rights measure growing to 218 ‘s a majority of the U.S. House of Representatives, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.
"We welcome the growth of Armenian Genocide Resolution cosponsors to the 218 threshold ‘s and want to extend our appreciation to Congressman Schiff and his colleagues who helped us reach this mark, as well as to each and everyone of the two hundred and eighteen cosponsors of this measure," said Aram Hamparian, Executive Director of the ANCA. "We look forward in the coming days and weeks to working with our chapters and activists across the country in maintaining and expanding the bipartisan majority in favor of the timely adoption of this human rights legislation."
"In gaining 218 cosponsors, we have demonstrated that a majority of the House strongly supports recognizing the facts of the Armenian Genocide," said lead sponsor, Congressman Adam Schiff. "While there are still survivors left, we feel a great sense of urgency in calling attention to the attempted murder of an entire people. Our failure to acknowledge these dark chapters of history prevents us from taking more effective action against ongoing genocides, like Darfur."
Introduced on January 30th by Rep. Adam Schiff along with Representative George Radanovich (R-CA), Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) and Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI), the Armenian Genocide resolution 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.
A similar resolution in the Senate (S.Res.106), introduced by Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Sen. John Ensign (R-NV) currently has 31 cosponsors, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (D-NY).
Over the past five months, Armenian Americans and human rights advocates have joined with Members of Congress in educating their colleagues about the Armenian Genocide and the importance of proper recognition of this crime against humanity.
Just this week, thousands participated in the ANCA "Call for Justice Campaign," a national Congressional call-in effort in support of H.Res.106. The campaign was a follow up to the weeklong ANCA "Click for Justice" web campaign in April.
On March 22 and 23, over 100 activists from 25 states participated in the Washington, DC advocacy days, titled "End the Cycle of Genocide: Grassroots Capitol Campaign." By the end of the whirlwind two-day campaign, organized by the ANCA and the Genocide Intervention Network (GI-Net), activists had visited all 100 Senate and 435 House of Representatives offices, meeting with Members of Congress and their staff, and dropping off information regarding pending Armenian and Darfur genocide legislation.
The grassroots campaign continued with the launching of the ANCA Western and Eastern Region POWER Initiatives designed to significantly expand community outreach and support. Dubbed "Project Outreach Western Region" in the West and "Project Outreach Waves the Eastern Region" in the East, the program has generated renewed grassroots activism in large and small communities.
Travels to traditional strongholds in California, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Illinois have been complemented with visits to Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Nevada, North Carolina and South Carolina, expanded outreach to established communities in Ohio, Wisconsin and Missouri and burgeoning communities in Alabama, Colorado, Hawaii, New Mexico, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington state.
The Armenian Genocide resolution is supported by a broad-based coalition of over 47 human rights, religious, civic, and ethnic organizations, including the (in alphabetical order): American Federation of Jews from Central Europe (New York, NY), American Hellenic Council of CA (Los Angeles, CA), American Hellenic Institute (Washington, DC), American Hungarian Federation (Washington, DC), American Jewish World Service (New York, NY), American Latvian Association in the U.S. (Rockville, MD), American Values (Washington, DC), Arab American Institute (Washington, DC), Belarusan-American Association (Jamaica, NY), Bulgarian Institute for Research and Analysis (Bethesda, MD), Center for Russian Jewry with Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (New York, NY), Center for World Indigenous Studies (Olympia, WA), Christian Solidarity International (Washington, DC), Congress of Romanian Americans (McLean, VA), Council for the Development of French in Louisiana (Lafayette, LA), Estonian American National Council (Rockville, MD), Genocide Intervention Network (Washington, DC), Global Rights (Washington, DC), Hmong National Development, Inc., Hungarian American Coalition (Washington, DC), Institute on Religion and Public Policy (Washington, DC), International Association of Genocide Scholars (New York, NY), Jewish Social Policy Action Network (Philadelphia, PA), Jewish War Veterans of the USA (Washington, DC), Jewish World Watch (Encino, CA), Joint Baltic American National Committee (Rockville, MD), Leadership Council for Human Rights (Washington, DC), Lithuanian American Community (Philadelphia, PA), Lithuanian American Council (Rockville, MD), National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (New York, NY), National Council of Churches USA (New York, NY), National Federation of American Hungarians (Washington, DC), National Federation of Filipino American Associations (Washington, DC), National Lawyer’s Guild (New York, NY), Polish American Congress (Chicago, IL), Progressive Jewish Alliance (Los Angeles, CA), Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (Wyncote, PA), Slovak League of America (Passaic, New Jersey), The Georgian Association in the USA (Washington, DC), The Workmen’s Circle/Arbeter Ring (New York, NY), U.S. Baltic Foundation (Washington, DC), Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (New York, NY), Ukrainian National Association (Parsippany, NJ), Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations (Washington, DC), United Hellenic American Congress (Chicago, IL), Washington Chapter Czechoslovak National Council of America (Washington, DC), and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (Philadelphia, PA).