Unknown assailants have vandalized a monument dedicated to the Holocaust by spray painting graffiti over the Hebrew letters on the structure, which was created as a memorial to the victims of the Genocides of the Armenian and Jewish people.
Yerevan police has launched an investigation with officials from all spectrums condemning the desecration of the monument, known as the “To Live and Not Forget” memorial that is located at a part on the intersection of Moskovyan and Teryan streets.
Specialists at Yerevan City Hall were mobilized Friday to restore the monument and wipe off the graffiti.
Hakob Karapetyan, the spokesperson for Yerevan Mayor Hayk Marutyan condemned the incident, saying there is no place for such crimes in Yerevan “where representatives of various nations are living side by side as Yerevantsis,” reported Armenspress.
“The desecration of any memorial is extremely unacceptable, especially memorials which are related to minorities living in the city. I think this problem should be solved through cooperation with aw enforcement agencies,” Karapetyan said when asked about efforts to put an end to such hate crimes in the future, since Friday’s incident was the second time this particular memorial has been targeted by vandals during the last few months.
Mayor Marutyan expressed hope that law enforcement agencies will give a swift and adequate response to the incident.
“Such an encroachment against any memorial is an unequivocally unacceptable and condemnable act which should never happen in our city.
Noted Jewish-Armenian composer William Weiner said he sees “foreign forces” in the vandalism and that he is certain that this couldn’t have been committed by an Armenian.
“As a citizen of Armenia, as a native Yerevantsi, I very much regret that things like this are happening here. I don’t understand it, I don’t want to understand it, this is the country where things like this never happened before, and I cannot understand who organized this. This is unacceptable for me. I am sure this wasn’t committed by an Armenian. I am certain that this is from outside,” Weiner told Armenpress.
Prosperous Armenia Party lawmaker Naira Zohrabyan, who is a member of the parliamentary Armenia-Israel friendship group, also condemned the vandalism.
“This is vandalism. Regardless what our attitude is (it is definitely negative) for the Israeli arms sales and overt military and political support to Azerbaijan during the latest Artsakh War, the Holocaust memorial cannot be desecrated,” said Zohrabyan. “We publicly express our protest to Israel’s policy, but desecrating the memory of victims is vandalism. I condemn Israel’s military support to Azerbaijan and the Israeli foreign ministry’s statements supporting the Turkish-Azerbaijani military aggression, but I bow before the memory of the innocent victims of the Holocaust.”