Leading members of the Armenian Diaspora are looking to take on a greater role in how Armenia is run. In a recent full-page ad published in The New York Times, 23 Diaspora personalities from around the world appealed to their compatriots to make “a long-term commitment toward collectively advancing” Armenia.
The 5-million strong Armenian Diaspora has helped prop up the struggling Armenian state since the country gained independence in 1991. But Diaspora support, until now, has tended to focus on international issues, in particular recognition of the Armenian Genocide. Diaspora groups have also been involved in apolitical charity works in Armenia.
The open letter, published October 28, called on members of the Diaspora to take a more assertive approach. “The goal of our enemies whoever they may be” is to destroy Armenia, wrote Charles Aznavour, the 92-year-old French superstar singer, one of the signatories. “However, the greatest threat comes from within us, and it is through inaction.”
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Emil Sanamyan is a freelance writer who specializes in coverage of Armenia.