ARF-D Press Service Issues a Statement Regarding Georgian Official’s Comments

YEREVAN (ARF-D Press Service, 18 March 2005) – In the March 14 issue of the Georgian newspaper “Rao-Rao” an interview is published with Georgi Gachechiladze, advisor to the Georgian president on international issues; we state the following regarding his comments:

1. The Armenian Revolutionary Federation has never sought and does not seek “Georgia’s destruction through North Caucasus.” The ARF is pursuing the protection of the rights of the Armenians of Javakhk within Georgia. Statements such as those made by the Georgian president’s advisor may only sow disturbance in the Caucasus.

2. On the eve of the 90th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the Georgian president’s advisor insults the memory of the Genocide victims, accusing them of becoming a blind tool in the hands of others. Actually, he is repeating the official position of Turkey, the perpetrator of the Genocide. Such a reprehensible stance of the Georgian president’s advisor is incompatible to the high office he holds.

3. The Georgian presidential advisor’s threats directed at the Javakhk Armenians are basis to suspect that the attempts to initiate disruption in Javakhk are aimed at justifying those very threats. The Georgian presidential advisor’s intimidating tone is unbecoming of a state that claims to be a champion of democracy; it resembles the style of dictators speaking to their subjects in tyrannies.

4. The level of the Georgian presidential advisor’s ignorance may be low enough to call a Yeltsin aide an ARF member, but it should not be as low as to overlook the real problems in Javakhk.

5. The ARF is ready to assist the Georgian authorities in protecting the political and civil rights of the Javakhk Armenians as well as resolving their socio-economic problems if the Georgian authorities take such steps. Continuing the discriminatory policies of the Georgian authorities towards the Javakhk Armenians can not result in favorable consequences for Georgia.