ASIA/TURKEY - Armenian courses for «crypto-Armenians»

Friday, 22 November 2013

Diyarbakir (Agenzia Fides) - The city of the southern province of Dyiarbakir in south-east Turkey, has decided to continue programming Armenian courses aimed in particular at the so-called «crypto-Armenians» to enable them to learn their mother tongue. The courses - organized in collaboration with a Kurdish association and Armenian foundation - have so far issued 67 certificates to Turkish nationals who had belatedly discovered their Armenian origin.
The news of the initiative, publicized by Turkish sources consulted by Fides Agency, raises anew the question of Armenians who converted to Islam to escape persecution and death during the tragic events of 1915. Some of them have kept their Armenian identity.
In several municipalities where Kurdish and Armenian minorities are concentrated, local authorities, with the consent of Ankara, have allowed in recent times to recover some of the Kurd, Armenian or Syrian names that the cities and the streets had in the past. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 22/11/2013)