LOS ANGELES — A lawsuit to return the properties, formerly belonging to Armenians and confiscated during the 1915 Genocide in Incirlik was filed in 9th Circuit Court. “Its progress is contingent on another, similar case that is awaiting a ruling from the Supreme Court of the United States,” Prominent Armenian lawyer Vartkes Yeghiayan told Armenpress.
Three Armenian-Americans, Los Angeles-area residents Rita Mahdessian and Anais Haroutunian, and Alex Bakalian of Washington, D.C., who have deeds proving ownership of properties stolen from their families during the Genocide, are seeking compensation for 122 acres of land in the Adana region of Turkey where the strategic Incirlik U.S. Air Base is partly located on their property.
Yeghiaian said that the case against the Getty Museum, filed in 2010 on behalf of the Armenian Catholicosate of Cilicia in order to regain ownership of eight canon table pages illustrated by medieval Armenian manuscript illuminator Toros Roslin, is in the final stage of negotiations.
The lawyer stressed that talks with Turkish attorneys are currently underway in order to satisfy the claims of over a hundred clients whose families once owned properties in Turkey. Yeghiaian’s law firm has also been asked to investigate property claims made by Protestant and Catholic Churches.
In addition, the law firm has published seven books on the Armenian Genocide, and prepares another one on confiscated Armenian properties for publication.
Since 2004, Yeghiaian’s firm has been able to reach agreements with two insurance companies to secure compensation for the descendants of Genocide victims.