SANTA BARBARA, CA – The Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region (ANCA-WR), along with long-time Santa Barbara resident and Armenian American community-member Haik Hakobian, met with US Representative Lois Capps in her District Office in Santa Barbara on Friday, September 2nd.
During their meeting, the ANCA-WR introduced a number of measures of interest to the Armenian American community pending in the House of Representatives to Congresswoman Capps. ANCA-WR Regional Director Armen Carapetian gave a summary of the Armenian Genocide resolutions, H.Res. 316 and H.Con.Res. 195, the South Caucasus Integration and Open Railroads Act of 2005 (H.R. 3361) introduced by the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues Chairmen Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) and Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Representative George Radanovich (R-CA), as well as a bill aimed to end the Turkish blockade of Armenia (H.R. 3103) introduced by Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA). A strong supporter of issues of concern of Armenian Americans, Representative Capps immediately expressed her support for the Armenian Genocide resolutions and stressed her concern over ongoing attempts on behalf of Turkey and Azerbaijan that aim to strangle the Republic of Armenia’s forward progress.
“The Congresswoman’s immediate and strong support for the issues that we discussed during our meeting was very touching,” said Haik Hakobian. “She has a very good understanding of the issues that the Republic of Armenia confronts today and of what we as Armenian Americans face in our efforts to strengthen US-Armenia relations.”
Upon her return to Capitol Hill from the August Recess, Representative Capps fulfilled her pledge and became a cosponsor of H.Res. 316, introduced by Representatives George Radanovich (R-CA), Adam Schiff (D-CA), Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), and Frank Pallone (D-NJ). H.Res. 316 currently has 124 cosponsors and is awaiting a markup by the House International relations Committee on Thursday, September 15th.
“The Armenian Genocide was a tragedy of enormous proportions. If Turkey doesn’t acknowledge this tragedy they will not be able to move past it,” stated Congresswoman Lois Capps.
Representative Lois Capps was among many Members of Congress that ANCA-WR met over the August Recess to discuss issues of concern to Armenian Americans, including, Representatives Susan Davis (D-CA), Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA), Brad Sherman (D-CA), Adam Schiff (D-CA), and Diane Watson (D-CA). The meetings aimed to introduce Members of Congress to their Armenian American constituents, discuss and galvanize support for issues of concern to Armenian Americans, and strategize on how to advance these issues.
“Congresswoman Capps represents a majority of Congressional members who support issues of concern to Armenian Americans such as the resolutions affirming the Armenian Genocide,” said Armen Carapetian. “Members of Congress want to respect the views of their constituents, so it is imperative that Armenian Americans express their concerns to their Representatives.”
The ANCA is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian-American community on a broad range of issues.