Armenian Diaspora

There are more than ten million Armenians living in Armenia, Artsakh and the Armenian communities across the globe, that is, the Armenian Diaspora. The Armenian Diaspora was formed throughout the centuries as a result of the loss of Armenian statehood and the establishment of foreign powers, the massacres of Armenians and the Genocide of 1915. Today, there are Armenian communities in more than 100 countries all over the world and the majority of them are in the Russian Federation, the U.S.A., France, Georgia, Syria, Lebanon, Argentina, Canada, the Islamic Republic of Iran, as well as other countries. Armenians of the Diaspora are mainly involved with issues concerning preservation of the national identity; they establish schools, churches, cultural homes and pan-Armenian organizations. After the independence of Armenia, relations between Armenia and the Diaspora intensified and reached a new level of cooperation.

The domestic and foreign challenges facing Armenians in Armenia and the Diaspora in the 21st century require a new quality, form and content for the guarantee of the strengthening and preservation of Armenian statehood, that is, the cooperation between Armenia and the Diaspora based on human, cultural and social capital, complete social integration and competitiveness.

Armenia and the Diaspora can be traced back to their common historical-cultural roots and the two are strong together: the challenges facing Armenia are those of the Diaspora and the main issues of the Diaspora are those of Armenia. The strength of the Armenian people lies in the collective, unified strength of all Armenians. The variety of culture, education, language, religion, politics and ideology of the Diaspora is the never-ending potential of all Armenians.

For centuries, Armenia has been and still is the land of dreams of all Armenians. Armenia’s statehood, its imperative for provision of security, strengthening of politics, economy, society, culture and religion is the axis around which the Republic of Armenia is going to unite Armenians across the globe, as well as the lives and activities of Armenians in the Diaspora.

The relations between Armenia and the Diaspora are aimed at defending the fundamental rights and freedoms, legal interests of each citizen of the Republic of Armenia, Armenians in Artsakh and the Diaspora within the limits of international law and preserving the qualities of national identity, that is, preservation of Armenians. The Republic of Armenia is going to do its best to support its citizens and nationals living abroad.

In spring 2008, the President of Armenia initiated reforms aimed at the implementation of the coordinated and productive state policy on Armenia-Diaspora relations by implementing the propositions stated in his pre-election platform and taking into account the preconditions formed as a result of the prospective policy led by the Republic of Armenia after the founding of Armenian statehood and based on the Constitution, norms, principles, interstate and international juridical and political obligations.

One of the reforms includes the formation of the Diaspora Ministry of the Republic of Armenia, which function as part of the government starting from October 1, 2008.The Ministry will be in charge of drafting and implementing the policy of the Government of the Republic of Armenia aimed at the strengthening of ties between Armenia and the Diaspora, development of cooperation with non-governmental organizations, preservation of Armenian national identity, revelation of potential of the Diaspora, drafting of the repatriation programs and work in other fields reserved for the Ministry under the supervision of the President of Armenia.

The Ministry will draft and implement prospective pan-Armenian programs aimed at developing ties between Armenia and the Diaspora and the rise of the reputation of Armenia and the Armenian people. The Ministry will also contribute to the implementation of pan-Armenian educational programs and development of public Armenian schools in the Diaspora; it will support activities aimed at preservation, protection, development and broadening of national identity, culture and heritage, establish and radicalize Armenian national identity among Armenians speaking a different language or those who belong to a different religion, as well as support the repatriation of Armenians of the Diaspora and the pilgrimage of Armenian youth to the Homeland.

The Ministry will support the participation of businessmen of the Diaspora in economic programs of the Republic of Armenia; form a political, economic, cultural, juridical and spiritual environment for the productive participation of the Armenian Diaspora in the solution of national issues and strengthening of Armenian statehood.

The Ministry will help to further organize the Diaspora, contribute to the creation and implementation of activities of pan-Armenian professional committees and unions, as well as create and implement processes for Armenians of the Diaspora to acquire dual citizenship.

The Diaspora Ministry will contribute to the formation and development of the pan-Armenian unified information field, unification of the political, economic, intellectual, scientific-educational, cultural-spiritual abilities and efforts of Armenia and the Diaspora aimed at international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, peace settlement of the Nagorno-Karabagh conflict, as well as the prevention, revelation and counterinfluence of anti-Armenian propaganda and Armenian history falsifiers.

The drafting of the development concept for Armenia’s cooperation with the Diaspora is a part of the reforms initiated by the President of Armenia. The creation of the “National Council” headed by the President of Armenia will set a goal to make Armenians in the Homeland and the Diaspora cooperate, discuss and determine principles for issues of international concern, as well as clarify the national and state priorities, steer the activities of state bodies in the necessary direction and secure the cooperation between the bodies. 

Letter to the
President of Armenia

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