WASHINGTON—Friends of Armenia will travel to Washington, D.C. from across America on March 15 for a two-day Capitol Hill advocacy campaign promoting peace, prosperity, and justice for the Armenian nation, organized by the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
“We look forward to building upon the success of December’s fly-in with a renewed grassroots drive this spring challenging Azerbaijan’s aggression, removing barriers to the growth of U.S.-Armenia economic relations, and overriding Turkey’s veto against a principled American stand for a just resolution of the Armenian Genocide,” said Elen Asatryan, ANCA Western Region executive director, and Armen Sahakyan of the ANCA Eastern Region. “We encourage constituents from across America to join us, once again, in making our case to Congress.”
Friends and supporters of Armenia and Artsakh are invited to register on the ANCA website at anca.org/ANCAflyin and work with ANCA regional and Washington, D.C. staff to coordinate meetings with Senate and House offices to share core ANCA public policy priorities. Registration is free; participants are responsible for their travel and lodging. The ANCA will host a reception in the Aramian Conference Room of its Washington office on the evening of Tues., March 15.
Among the key requests that advocates will deliver to legislators during the fly-in are:
Peace: Congressional leaders will be urged to help save lives, avert war, and create the conditions for a fair and enduring peace by demanding the immediate implementation of the Royce-Engel proposals for Nagorno-Karabagh: 1) The withdrawal of snipers and heavy arms, 2) the addition of Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) observers, and 3) the deployment of gunfire locator systems. The U.S. government, the OSCE, and both Armenia and Artsakh have endorsed these proposals. Only Azerbaijan ‘s objections are preventing their implementation. (A review of ANCA’s recent pro-Artsakh advocacy can be found at www.anca.org/artsakhadvocacy.)
Prosperity: Members of Congress will be encouraged to help remove a major barrier to U.S.-Armenia business ties—the double taxation of U.S./Armenia profits—through the negotiation of a long overdue bilateral tax treaty. This accord, building upon last year’s landmark U.S.-Armenia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, would help create jobs, foster hope, and generate economic opportunity in both countries. Legislators will also be asked to support continued U.S. assistance to Nagorno-Karbagh, for de-mining of civilian areas and the urgently needed expansion of a regional rehabilitation center providing healthcare services to disabled children and adults from throughout the Caucasus area and beyond.
Justice: U.S. Senators and Representatives will be asked to support the adoption of S.Res.140 and H.Res.154, the Armenian Genocide Truth and Justice Resolution. H.Res.154, a reparations-oriented measure, goes beyond recognition, actively seeking to engage the full force of United States diplomacy in ending Turkey ‘s denial of both truth and justice for this still-unpunished crime against humanity.