January 5, 2007
For Immediate Release
Contact: Lerna Kayserian
tel: (818) 500-1918

MEMBERS OF CONGRESS AND CA STATE LEGISLATORS FULLY SUPPORT AYF FAST TO FOCUS NATIONAL ATTENTION ON ARMENIAN GENOCIDE

Los Angeles, CA — California Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA) and California State Legislators Paul Krekorian, Lloyd Levine and Anthony Portantino are among a growing number of elected officials standing in solidarity with Armenian Youth Federation members fasting in front of the Turkish Consulate in Los Angeles. The fasters, who have not eaten since January 2nd, are working to bring national attention to the continued denial of the Armenian Genocide and the ongoing genocide in Darfur.

Those fasting will be joined by hundreds of supporters at a rally slated for 5:00 p.m. this Saturday at the Turkish Consulate located at 6300 Wilshire Boulevard. Earlier on Saturday, State Assembly member Paul Krekorian will join those fasting and Armenian Genocide survivor Ghazaros Kademian at a press conference to draw media attention to the aim of ending the global cycle of genocide. All Armenian Americans and human rights supporters are encouraged to attend the 5:00 p.m. rally on Saturday in support of those fasting.

Congressman Adam Schiff released the following statement in support of the AYF action. “I stand with the Armenian Youth Federation and the United Human Rights Council’s efforts to raise awareness of the Armenian Genocide through a fast in front of the Los Angeles Turkish Consulate. Turkey must acknowledge the genocide committed by the Ottoman Empire nine decades ago. We as a nation must also acknowledge the Armenian Genocide and I will soon introduce a resolution in the House that will honor the victims and put the Congress on the record. I am hopeful that with new leadership in Congress we can finally get it passed.”

“I am proud to support the Armenian Youth Federation and the United Human Rights Council’s efforts to raise awareness of the Armenian Genocide through a fast in front of the Los Angeles Turkish Consulate,” stated Assembly member Lloyd Levine. “Turkey must acknowledge the genocide committed by the Ottoman Empire nine decades ago, and it is of the utmost importance that we as a people do all we can to educate others about the Armenian Genocide, and all genocides. That is why, this past session, I was honored to author legislation creating a California International Genocide Memorial in Sacramento. We must remind people of the atrocities that have occurred in our nation’s history so they will never be repeated.”

State Assembly member Anthony Portantino issued the following statement of solidarity with those AYF and UHRC members fasting: “It is important that we not only condemn the genocides of the twenty first century, but also to support the recognition of the first genocide on the twentieth century. I applaud the members of the Armenian Youth for focusing attention on these important issues.”

The Armenian Youth Federation and the United Human Rights Council launched the “Fast for Remembrance” this week in front of the Turkish Consulate to raise awareness about the Armenian Genocide and the ongoing Genocide in Darfur. The fast began on January 2, 2007 with 19 youth fasting for justice and comes to a symbolic end on January 6, 2007 — Armenian Christmas. The rally will bring the five-day (120 hour) fast to a close.

The Armenian National Committee of America (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.

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