SAN DIEGO, CA — The Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region 2002 Congressional Outreach Campaign continued last Friday with a meeting with San Diego area Congresswoman Susan Davis. ANCA-WR Executive Director Alex Sardar, Ardashes Kassakhian, ANCA-WR Government Relations Director and ANC San Diego Chapter activist Kate Nahabetian, met with Representative Davis of California’s 49th District to discuss issues of concern to the Armenian American community. Rep. Davis’ District Director Dan Hammer joined the meeting. During the hour-long meeting numerous topics were discussed including the growing support amongst members of Congress for the letter co-authored by Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) and Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) calling upon President Bush to reaffirm the Armenian Genocide in a public statement. Rep. Davis addressed the importance of educating members of Congress about Armenian American issues and said she’d sign on as a co-host of the Armenian National Committee of America’s 8th annual Capitol Hill Observance to be held on April 17. Representative Davis explained that while in the State Legislature she worked hard with fellow legislators to ensure that the Armenian Genocide was properly memorialized. “The Armenian community of San Diego is a growing and vibrant community and we look forward to facilitating a working relationship between Representative Davis’ office and our local chapter,” said Sardar.
ANCA-WR Government Relations Director Ardashes Kassakhian briefed Congresswoman Davis on the efforts underway to urge President George W. Bush to follow through on his campaign promises of recognizing the Armenian Genocide. He also outlined the concerns of the Armenian American community in the wake of the waiver of Section 907 and gave the US Representative a sense of the dangers faced by Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia, with a rogue neighbor such as Azerbaijan receiving increased military capabilities.
“There are no guarantees that the military aid being sent to Azerbaijan from the US under the pretext of the war on terrorism will not be used against the Armenians of Karabakh and as such we must take the necessary steps to ensure their security and right to self-determination,” explained Kassakhian.
Congresswoman Davis pledged her support for ANCA-WR initiatives and issues of concern to her Armenian American constituents, and welcomed the idea of working more closely with the Congressional Armenian Issues Caucus, and possibly becoming a member of the growing House group.
The Armenian National Committee of America is the largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots political organization. The ANCA actively advances a broad range of issues of concern to the Armenian-American community.