ASIA/TURKEY - Criticism by the Armenian community to Patriarchal Vicar Atesyan for the position taken with respect to the German resolution on Genocide

Tuesday, 14 June 2016 oriental churches  


Istanbul (Agenzia Fides) - Representatives of the Armenian Apostolic communities in Turkey have expressed a clear distancing towards the letter sent by the Patriarchate to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the vote of the German parliament, which last June 2 recognized the systematic massacres of Armenians perpetrated in Anatolia in 1915 as "Genocide".
After the violent reaction of Erdogan (with subtle threats of expulsion of the Armenians living in Turkey) to the resolution adopted by Bundestag, Apostolic Armenian Archbishop Aram Atesyan - Patriarchal Vicar who exercises the functions of the Patriarch, hit by a severe debilitating disease - had sent a letter to the Turkish President in which he expressed "his regret and that of Armenians" for the resolution voted by the German parliament, describing it as an attempt to exploit the tragedy of the Armenian people for the interests of "international policy".
After a few days, the Armenian-Turkish bilingual weekly Agos, published and distributed in Turkey, published a long letter, signed on behalf of the "Armenian Community of Turkey", in which "shame, anger and grief" are expressed for topics and tones used in the Archbishop's letter to Erdogan Atesyan. You - reads the letter, the text of which was sent to Agenzia Fides - define the systematic annihilation and almost totally carried out by a people at the behest of the State itself, as 'events that occurred during the tragic hours of World War I' ".
In 2008, the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul, Mesrob II, was hit by Alzheimer's Disease in a form that rapidly reduced him to a vegetative state. According to Turkish laws, the office of Patriarch is held for life, and a new Armenian Patriarch cannot be elected until its predecessor is still alive. Since 2008, for the ordinary administration of the Patriarchate, Archbishop Aram Atesyan exercises the patriarchal duties as Patriarchal Vicar (GV) (Agenzia Fides 14/06/2016)