During the past weeks, the 17-month conflict in Syria has escalated to dangerous proportions. Caught in the crossfire of this growing conflict are the innocent citizens of Syria, among them the large Armenian community.
The presence of Armenians in Syria dates back many centuries, and throughout that time, the community has had an important role in the Armenian Diaspora reality. Especially after the Armenian Genocide, the growing Armenian community, through its hard work and determination has created beneficial situation for nurturing families and establishing national institutions such as churches and schools, and preserving our heritage and traditions. Today, due to the current conflict, the Armenian community is facing a crisis. The Armenian community organizations in Syria, by adhering to the survivalist spirit of the Armenian people, have already mobilized to effectively and in an organized manner cater to the needs of the community.
In light of this mounting humanitarian crisis, Armenians will not remain indifferent, and will get to work to extend a helping hand and assist the Syrian-Armenian community.
The Armenian American community of Western United States is equally concerned with these developments, which impact the entire Armenian nation. Any harm inflicted upon any member of our dispersed Armenian family equally impacts the rest of the family be they in Armenia or the Diaspora. With increased resolve and conviction we must be ready to support the Syrian-Armenian population, just as we have come to aid of our brethren in Armenia, Artsakh, Lebanon and Iraq, in their time of need.
We call upon the Armenian American community of the Western United States to facilitate the needs of the Syrian Armenian community and to contribute for the preservation of the Armenian community. The Syrian Armenian community has fulfilled its centuries-old mission proudly, and today as it holds on to its home, the community is aware of its exceptional and unique role it has had in the Diaspora, which unequivocally needs to be preserved.
We hereby announce the formation of a Joint Committee in Support of the Syrian Armenian Community.
Archbishop Hovnan Derderian
Archbishop Moushegh Mardirossian
Bishop Mikayel Mouradian
Rev. Joe Matossian
Social Democrat Hunchakian Party
Armenian Revolutionary Federation
Armenian Democratic Liberal Party
Armenian General Benevolent Union
Armenian Relief Society
August 15, 2012