18 April 2022: Week to Week by Armenia Media with Shahen Araboghlian

By Shahen Araboghlian – Armenia Media | Friday, 22 April 2022

Week to Week / ՇԱԲԱԹԷ ՇԱԲԱԹ

By Shahen Araboghlian – Exclusively for Armenia Media

The Fate of Artsakh in Limbo

brown concrete statue on green grass field during daytime

Image caption: The Fate of Artsakh Lies Blur

The Russian MoD reported that Martakert, Artsakh, experienced a violation of the line of contact by Azerbaijan on the 15th of April. One Armenian soldier was wounded.

With rumours of behind-the-door agreements between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and with Artsakh’s sovereignty in question, RA National Assembly opposition MPs staged a walkout after placing the flags of Artsakh on their desks. They were on their way to Artsakh when MP Saghatelyan, one of the leading opposition figures, informed on Facebook that they were denied entry; Russian Peacekeepers had denied their entry into the Republic. The Armenian MFA expressed concern over this move.

In a speech to parliament the next day, PM Pashinyan said the RA’s goal is to ensure “long-term peace.” MFA Mirzoyan said Aliyev claims the OSCE Minsk Group mandate is invalid, but the OSCE framework is the only way the Artsakh conflict will be settled; Mirzoyan had held phone calls with his Azeri counterpart days before.

The President of Artsakh, Arayik Harutyunyan, said he will ensure a path to independence. The Artsakh parliament stated that self-determination is the only way out. Artsakh MFA said Artsakh has only one future under Azerbaijan, and that future is genocide.

The line of contact was violated the next day in the area of Martakert, Artsakh.

Opposition officials have launched an open-ended protest period and hunger strikes demanding Pashinyan’s resignation.

The US and France have reiterated their commitment to ensuring long-lasting peace in the region. The EU has expressed its satisfaction over Armenia-Azerbaijan direct talks.

Armenian School Vandalised in Istanbul

The Bomonti Mekhitarian Armenian School of Istanbul had its gates vandalised last week with swastikas. This same school was vandalised not long after the 4-Day War in 2016 when the school's external walls were spray-painted with “we’ll see you in Karabakh one day”.

I spoke to Arno Kalaycı, an Armenian lawyer and member of Nor Zartonk, born and raised in Istanbul, to get

“For sure, to see the Nazi swastika drawn on an Armenian school is quite worrying,” he tells me, “this is precisely due to hate speech and crimes against minorities resulting in impunity [in Turkey].

“We don't have more information about this incident right now. However, it is obvious that this is the consequence of the hate atmosphere and impunity which encourages these actions,” Arno concludes.

Centre after Centre - Big Tech Continues Taking Major Leaps in Armenia

Image caption: Big Tech Companies Open Up Spaces in Armenia

It’s been a great week for tech in Armenia, and it’s fortunately not a unique phenomenon for the Silicon Valley of the Caucasus.

First off, the humongous tech company NVIDIA plans to launch a new centre in Yerevan, headed by Rev Lebaredian, VP of Omniverse and NVIDIA employee for more than 20 years. I dug a little into it and found out that NVIDIA’s already hiring in Armenia; 94 job openings at the time of writing this article. Check them out here.

Additionally, Grid Dynamics, a global IT systems company with 22 offices around the world and headquartered in Silicon Valley, will launch a new engineering centre in Yerevan.

ManyChat, a chatting bot used for services such as Facebook Messenger by more than a million businesses, opened a product development and engineering office in Yerevan.

The tech field in Armenia keeps growing exponentially by the day, here’s to hoping Armenia prospers in the decades to come in a field that’ll dominate all fields.

Football Kentron - Weekly Soccer News

Image caption: FC Pyunik caught up to Ararat-Armenia for first place (image by FC Pyunik Facebook page).

Football Kentron, once again, delivers the weekly soccer news of all things Armenian. Read them below.

  • The Armenian Premier League title race is heating up as FC Pyunik caught up to Ararat-Armenia for first place. They are equal with 57 points, however, Ararat-Armenia sits in first place with a goal difference of 31 and FC Pyunik of 21.

  • Armenian National Team forward Tigran Barseghyan won the league in Slovakia with SK Slovan Bratislava. He joined the club in the January transfer window.

  • Artur Galoyan, FC Veles Moscow 22-year-old captain and offensive midfielder, flew to Armenia to get his citizenship and is the new addition to the Armenian National Team. He has stated that his heart was set for Armenia from the beginning, even if he grew up in Russia. His blood is Armenian he said.

  • Football Kentron Future Star Daron Iskenderian is getting consistent game time at Las Vegas Lights FC after returning from Armenia U21 camp, where he came off the bench and played for 30 minutes alongside another Football Kentron Future Star Armen Hovhannisyan.

  • Felix Ferahyan is back from injury and started a cup game in which HIFK demolished a 4th tier club 10-0. He managed to keep a clean sheet - his second in total this season.

Notable News:

gray concrete building under blue sky during daytime

Image caption: MEPs place pressure on Azerbaijan to stop the agenda of ethnic cleansing in Karabakh.

What happened this past week? Let’s find out.

  • Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia Aram I gave a very political sermon during Easter Mass on Sunday in Antelias, Lebanon, defending the right to self-determination of the people of Artsakh.

  • Chess Grandmaster Levon Aronian’s iconic dog, Ponchik, turns 7. This definitely is newsworthy to all those following Aronian on social media.

  • ICRC visits Armenian POWs in Azerbaijan.

  • Dr. Oz, running for US Senate in Pennsylvania, dodges the Armenian Genocide question. His full name is Mehmet Oz and he is Turkish-American.

  • University of Southern California Dornsife Institute of Armenian Studies launches a truck that helps you record your Armenian story, for their famous #MyArmenianStory initiative. Read more about it here.

  • Armenian MFA spokesperson says Armenia plans to open the border with Turkey for diplomats, but Turkey’s still hesitant.

  • MEPs place pressure on Azerbaijan to stop the agenda of ethnic cleansing in Karabakh. Read the full statement here.

  • Many Armenians, including the three presidents – current and former – of Artsakh attended Easter mass at Amaras.

  • Sev Ohanian is among the new writers of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Multimedia Corner

Image caption: How would non-Armenians react to Armenian staple dishes? Find out below. (Video still from BuzzFeed)

  • Read: Learn about us, Armenians, from a spectacular third-angle view in this book written by Phillip Marsden called The Crossing Place: A Journey among the Armenians. Here’s the Amazon link. There’s a Western Armenian translation by Loucig Srabian-Guloyan, but I couldn’t find it online. I’ll get back to you, dear reader, with an update on that next week.
  • Listen: The State Youth Orchestra of Armenia performing the Kung Fu Panda soundtrack at a music festival in Lebanon. Sounds like a fever dream? It’s not! Check it out here.

  • Watch: Old but gold, watch people try Armenian food for the first time here.

  • Learn: China had a bustling community of Armenians through the 19th and 20th centuries, learn all about them here.