Many took the harrowing experience with them to their graves. Others would share only fragments of memories. All of them suffered unimaginable loss. They were the orphans of the Armenian Genocide and their stories must never be forgotten.
From those who survived the Armenian Genocide to those who moved to Soviet Armenia during the Great Repatriation of the 1940s, Western Armenians contributed to Yerevan’s incredible rise as a major city, turning it into the heart and soul of the Armenian nation.
Is Armenia moving towards the implementation of a human rights-based state and state policy? To find out, Anahit Simonyan interviews Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Zaruhi Batoyan, Minister of Health, Arsen Torosyan, and Deputy Minister of Education, Arevik Anapiosyan.
With a global demand for outdoor sports increasing and a heightened interest in hiking and guiding in Armenia, several companies are now not only building trails, but possibly rebuilding lives in Armenia’s mountainous landscape.
Negotiating the complexities of civil aviation aside, Tatevik Revazian, chair of Armenia’s Civil Aviation Committee has had to learn how to negotiate the media landscape, trust less and break down stereotypes.
With the global market value of natural cosmetics steadily rising over the past decade, a number of Armenian companies have begun to create a niche and secure a strong customer base for natural beauty products made in Armenia.
The destruction of some historic buildings began in the Soviet era. That practice continued after the independence of Armenia. The Old Yerevan Project is meant to restore the architectural heritage of the capital city, however, progress has been slow and controversial.
Despite a number of legislative and institutional reforms initiated over the past decade, the water sector in Armenia still faces serious challenges with respect to management and protection.
While rates of infertility have started to come down in Armenia, many couples do face the possibility of never having a child. Not being able to conceive rips some couples apart, while others become stronger as they search for alternative solutions.
When you are suspended in an in-between place, belonging everywhere and nowhere at the same time, what does it take to prove you are Armenian? A baptismal certificate from an Armenian Church...but even that may not be good enough.
Hidden away in dusty archives, Seda Grigoryan discovered documents from a 1939 Soviet trial that found 20th century writer, literary critic and public figure Zabel Yesayan guilty of crimes she had not committed.
A survivor of the 1915 Armenian Genocide, Soghomon Tehlirian assassinates Talaat Pasha, the mastermind behind the attempted annihilation of the Armenian nation in Berlin on March 15, 1921. Historian Suren Manukyan examines the repercussions and consequences of that act of revenge.
“A male writer is free to be average, but never a female writer.” This is what 19th century writer Srbouhi Dussap told Zabel Yesayan when she announced she wanted to be a writer. Hasmik Khalapyan traces the extraordinary lives of Armenian women writers of the Ottoman Empire.
Vigen Galstyan takes the reader on a journey spanning a century of Armenian women photographers who carved out their own individual spaces and honed a personal vision that spoke to urgent, collective questions, often speaking the unspeakable and approaching the unapproachable.
For International Women’s Day, we asked women what they would tell their younger selves. While their answers weren’t always surprising, they were emblematic of the difficult choices women are often forced to make.
An abundance of illegal garbage dumps and legislation that is sometimes unclear about the responsibilities of different governmental bodies with regards to waste management, it’s a wonder Armenia hasn’t drowned in a sea of trash.
LGBT people and issues became a mainstream topic of conversation last year in Armenia, much to the fanfare, or perhaps due to, the former ruling elite, and a public glued to social media.
Mining has a potential to play a significant role in Armenia, however current gaps in legislation and poor monitoring and assessment presents many risks.
Will Armenia be able to turn the tide on migration? According to a 2015 UN Report, Armenia’s population is projected to decrease to 2.7 million by 2050. Following the Velvet Revolution, however, the ominous demographic situation is starting to show some positive developments.
Sex continues to be a taboo subject in Armenia. When it comes to sexual relations between individuals with disabilities, the misconceptions and taboos are even greater, writes Kushane Chobanyan.
A recent ruling by the ECHR has brought up the issue of the proper application of eminent domain once again. While the state has the right to exercise eminent domain, it also has a responsibility to guarantee that the purpose is to benefit society, not narrow business interests.
Couples who have struggled with infertility, sometimes turn to surrogate mothers to have a child of their own. With continuing economic hardship in Armenia, policymakers and health professionals need to address issues in the current legislation that may leave women who choose to become surrogates vulnerable.
Journalist Gohar Abrahamyan stumbled upon a scuffle on one of the central streets of Yerevan involving an elderly man and his young grandson. While trying to understand the situation, Abrahamyan also uncovered the irreversible consequence of people’s indifference when they witness abuse.
As women in Armenia continue to break stereotypes, they are entering professions usually reserved for men. Kushane Chobanyan spent a day with female first responders and got a peek inside the life of these incredible women.
Amnesty is practiced in countries where judicial independence is weak or compromised and courts are among the most mistrusted institutions. This year, the ninth amnesty was announced in Armenia. Considering its timing and the stakeholders it affects, some argue that it was politically motivated.
Three decades after the catastrophic Spitak Earthquake, Hovhannes Nazaretyan takes a look back at how that tragedy was covered by one of America’s most prestigious newspapers.
Palliative care is an approach that strives to improve the quality of life of patients who are terminally ill; it endeavors to provide a life of dignity. In Armenia, culture, stereotypes and entrenched practices make this approach very difficult to achieve, and instead of helping the patient, often causes them to lose their voice and their dignity.
This is a film about the Velvet Revolution, which took place in April-May of 2018 in Armenia from the perspective of Anna Hakobyan, the wife of Nikol Pashinyan, the man who led the nationwide movement that drastically changed the country's political landscape. The film portrays the personal side of Pashinyan’s political life and career.
Thirty years ago, a devastating earthquake ripped through northern Armenia, killing over 25 thousand people, destroying buildings, decimating entire villages and in its ominous wake, leaving a people traumatized. Today, 30 years on, Gyumri, one of the hardest hit cities, is rising.
Another case of a woman being killed by her husband has forced Armenian society to speak once again about the one thing it doesn’t like to address - domestic violence.
While Armenia has participated in several international comparative educational assessments, and has designed national assessment tools, neither have been implemented properly. Today, more than ever, there is a great need to properly analyze existing data that can inform educational policy making and curriculum development.
A prominent Armenian Bolshevik activist and head of the Baku Commune Stepan Shahumyan’s ghost now wanders through his native Caucasus. Armenians have largely forgotten his century-old verbal attacks on nationalism and insistence on internationalist fraternity of peoples, yet his statues remain and streets, villages and towns are named after him in Armenia and Artsakh.
Being born with Down Syndrome has not stopped Tigran Gevorgyan from pursuing his dreams. From winning gold medals at the Special Olympics to finding love, Tigran is not only breaking stereotypes, he’s creating a life of joy, fulfillment and meaning.
Education is an inalienable right, regardless of circumstances. Juveniles deprived of liberty in Armenia face challenges that include issues with rehabilitation and reintegration, but also with the right to education.
Even after Armenia gained independence from the Soviet Union, it is still reliant on many Soviet-built (sometimes very poorly built) infrastructure that can prove to be dangerous to local communities, flora and fauna, as well as the country’s economy and national security.
UNICEF Armenia recently held a conference discussing child abuse in Armenia, a topic that is often not talked about. Based on the Demographic and Health Survey conducted in almost 8000 households in the country, the numbers of children experiencing physical and psychological abuse are quite alarming.
Cross-border cooperation among environmental groups is imperative to ensure real environmental protection globally. Drawing examples from Armenia and Lebanon, Sophia Manukyan delves into the world of high-stake investments and assistance in heavy metal mining and waste management.
In this first analytical piece for EVN Report, Yerevan-based psychiatrist Aram Hovsepyan writes about the struggles of people with mental health issues and their caregivers based on field research from his recent visit to the border communities in the Tavush region of Armenia.
The Araratian Baccalaureate, a public-private partnership between the Armenian Government and Ayb Education Foundation launched under the previous administration, came under the spotlight when Education Minister Arayik Harutyunyan questioned the need for “elite” schools and the financial efficacy of the program.
It was in her sophomore year at university that Lilit Makunts realized that fighting for justice wasn’t simply a slogan. From her first involvement in a civic initiative to her foray into politics, Makunts has been ‘present’ all along, although perhaps slightly under the public radar. That is, until she was appointed as Armenia’s Minister of Culture on May 12.
Revelations of corruption at the highest levels in recent weeks have shaken many people in Armenia, including the youth who were active during the Velvet Revolution. In this first essay for EVN Report, Nune Harutyunyan writes about her feelings after investigators discovered stolen boxes of supplies meant for soldiers on the frontlines and more.
The essay attempts to offer several historical and pedagogical responses to the genocide of the Armenian people by suggesting a program on the study of the Middle Ages of Turkey, one that would entail the study of the three mediaeval epic tales that were forged during the Middle Ages on Anatolian soil.
The Amulsar gold mine, owned and operated by Lydian Armenia, is one of the most controversial projects in recent years in Armenia. Over the past weekend, activists from Yerevan and elsewhere traveled to the province of Vayots Dzor to raise awareness about the potential danger the mine poses to the environment.
A series of extraordinary events in early spring of 2018 that came to be known as the Velvet Revolution fundamentally changed Armenia’s political landscape. EVN Report’s Maria Titizian reflects on some of her personal experiences during those heady days.
Arpine Haroyan looks back at how an avant-garde art movement called Futurism impacted the work of a number of young Armenian intellectuals in Constantinople, Tbilisi and Yerevan at the turn of the 20th century.
In his first piece for EVN Report. Alen Amirkhanian writes about the current state of the mining industry in Armenia. He argues that mining governance, from decision-making process on granting mining licenses, monitoring performance to ensuring compliance with laws and standards, is defective and in need of determined reform.
After centuries of being stateless, Armenia declared independence on May 28, 1918. Institutions needed to be built from the ground up including the creation of the symbols of statehood. Here are the stories behind those national symbols as remembered by the First Republic's last Prime Minister Simon Vratsian.
As Armenians prepare to mark the centennial of the First Armenian Republic (1918-1920), Varak Ketsemanian writes that there seems to be little consensus regarding its true meaning, its contested legacy and the various forms through which it should be commemorated.
As a participant and observer in every protest starting with the Karabakh Movement in 1988, Lusine Hovhannisyan writes that while Nikol Pashinyan gifted Armenians victory in 2018, the people now find themselves nervous about every decision, every appointment, every opinion being expressed.
Photojournalist Eric Grigorian's series of portraits from Republic Square where thousands gathered in protest as Yerevan enters the seventh day of mass rallies, protests and innumerable acts of civil disobedience.
Vardges Baghryan, a journalist from Artsakh recounts his personal memories from the Karabakh Movement and the war. He recalls the siege on the village of Karintak and how the future freedom and independence of the people of Artsakh was forged.
President Serzh Sargsyan’s second and final term in office ends on April 9. It is almost certain that he will be elected as the country’s new prime minister thereby prolonging his power. EVN Report looks back at the Constitutional amendments that led to this situation and a new military-patriotic educational doctrine that is set to pass in parliament.
A perceived absence of agency has led to growing public indifference in Armenia. When those who do take a stand, regardless of their tactics, are left to stand alone, more questions than answers surface. From the recent sentencing of radical opposition activists, to sit-ins and hunger strikes Opera Square to continuing impunity, everyone seems to be forgetting to ask, why?
Lusine Hovhannisyan was a witness and participant in the Karabakh Movement. Thirty years later, she had the chance to meet with someone who was on the opposite side of the barricades - a Soviet official who had tried to infiltrate the ranks of the demonstrators.
Gender discrimination is a deeply cultural problem, Rafik Santrosyan writes. The incident last month in Yerevan City Hall where a group of men beat a woman councilor highlight how patriarchal relations, toxic masculinity and internalized misogyny have influenced the public discourse.
“There are no invalids in the USSR!” This much heard expression exemplifies how people with disabilities were stigmatized in the Soviet Union. How pervasive is the exclusion of people with disabilities in post-Soviet Armenia? Anais Bayrakdarian talks to experts working in the field and writes that the true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable.
Is corruption inherent to the post-Soviet Armenian political culture, and if so, does this make the political culture of Armenia incompatible with democratic values? Dr. Nerses Kopalyan examines how conflictual matters that should be resolved in the public sphere are almost always resolved within the cultural rules of the private sphere.
A native of Bourj Hammoud bids farewell to her hometown following an attack on writer Raffi Doudaklian in what appears to have been an attempt to silence his words. In this deeply personal essay, Roubina Margossian reflects on her complicated relationship with the town.
On March 1, 2008, police units move in to put an end to ongoing protests disputing the results of the February 19, Presidential Elections in Armenia. In the aftermath ten people are dead, hundreds were injured. The reality before and after March 1st as seen through the lenses of the members of the 4Plus photo collective.
Deciding never to use the word Genocide and then coming face-to-face with it again in a new context; between reading biographies of the victims of the Sumgait Pogrom over and over again and the urge to see who now occupies the homes of the Armenians of Baku and Sumgait, writer Lusine Hovhannesyan unexpectedly discovers a common yet obvious thread.
Journalist Lusine Hovhannesyan recounts her personal memories as a university student during the first days of the Karabakh Movement. She writes, “We became beautiful and fell in love easily like young men and women living out their last days at the barricades and we sang songs of resilience in the streets of Yerevan.”
In the last 100 years, there have been hierarchies of identity and canonical approaches to definitions of "Armenian," especially as articulated, rationalized and promoted by elites, institutions and political parties in the Diaspora and in Armenia. This essay is not a study of identity per se, but about one of the aspects of identity – the “Armenian” bit of it.
In this exceptionally honest and candid article, Gevorg Ter-Gabrielyan writes about his impressions from the first few months of the Karabakh Movement 30 years ago, with words he did not have nor could find at the time.
In this first essay for EVN Report, Dr. Vahe Sahakyan of the University of Michigan seeks to address the issue of Armenian diaspora leadership by examining it in theoretical and comparative perspective. He asks, who are the diaspora leaders, and can they have multiple geographical or cultural identities and yet remain ethnically “unmixed?”
Over the course of the next two years, 20,000 13-year-old girls in Armenia are to receive the HPV vaccine free of charge before the Ministry of Health makes a decision for permanent implementation of the vaccine into the national plan.
When a massive earthquake rocked northern Armenia in 1988, EVN Report’s Vahram Ter-Matevosyan was a fifth grade student in Gyumri. In this personal essay, he recounts his experience of being trapped beneath the ruins of his school for 18 harrowing hours.
In this poignant essay, Lalai Manjikian writes about the frantic rhythm of managing a career and motherhood. The transition to motherhood, she writes, is not necessarily easy and nor is it the aestheticized perfect pastel images on social media. It is messy, painful, and exhausting, yet, interspersed with pockets of unimaginable heart-expanding joy.
Even as “Global Armenians” seem to be thriving around the world, they don’t appear to be thriving in the Republic of Armenia. Global Armenians, like the ocean-crisscrossing Armenian merchants of the 16th-18th centuries, contributed to vibrant Armenian communities around the globe, “preserving a nation is not the same as preserving a community,” writes Dr. Hratch Tchilingirian.
Armenia’s Ministry of Culture shut down an exhibit entitled ECLIPSE at the Tumanyan House Museum in Yerevan stating that it was ‘politicized’. Since the public no longer has the opportunity to physically go and see the exhibit, Narine Tukhikyan, the director of the Tumanyan House Museum, provided EVN Report with all the curated artifacts so that it could live on virtually.
After decades of moving from city to city, writer and journalist Paul Chaderjian ends up with a relic that has no place in his two suitcases of mere essentials. A personal story that comes full circle from orphanages in Aleppo to civil war Beirut to Fresno and New York to Doha and Istanbul.
Journalist, activist and cartoonist Lucine Kasbarian's political cartoon "Eli and Gor, A Cross-cultural Parallel" is a reflection of her desire to make incisive and humorous commentaries about the Armenian condition.
An experimental film and an introspective by Seda Grigoryan where her experiences of covering the Daredevils of Sassoun saga merge with impressions and sentiments from a visit to Western Armenia.
Comedian and co-founder of ArmComedy Sergey Sargsyan offers some interesting advice about what to do when confronted with hateful comments on social media.
How does one navigate identities? Serving as the Deputy Chief of the Political/Economic Section at the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, Ruben Harutunian writes that it was a unique opportunity to return to his hometown to support the effort of building ever-stronger ties between the United States and Armenia.
The story of Gayane Arevshatyan’s home-restaurant began twenty years ago, after a tragedy that radically changed her life. It was the Armenia of the 1990s - the cold and dark years. The country had survived a devastating earthquake, the Karabakh War, the disintegration of the Soviet Union, blockade, an energy crisis...In a matter of years, lives and narratives had turned upside down.
Nareg Seferian discusses his experiences dealing with ethno-national identity, the current situation with the Armenian identity around the world, and how it plays out vis-à-vis the Republic of Armenia.
Jag Bambir, one of Armenia’s most beloved musicians, is an early pioneer of the rock and roll movement in the former Soviet Union. In this piece, Raffi Meneshian reviews a recent concert Jag gave in Gyumri in April where he presented his latest creation – Treaton.
In the traditional Diaspora narrative, American-Armenian, Syrian-Armenian and many other options exist, but Russian-Armenian has never been on the list according to journalist Grigor Atanesian who was born and raised in Saint Petersburg. He says that you’re either Russian or Armenian. "Visiting Armenia, we were the Russian kids who found love in a hopeless place," he writes.
The voices of women writers occupy a small space in the Armenian literary canon. They are for the most part absent in literature textbooks in Armenia with the exception of a few women writers, mentioned only in passing. Contemporary women writers, translators and educators answer the question: Where have the women gone?
Domestic violence is a critical issue facing women globally, and women in Armenia are not immune from it. In this piece, Ani Jilozian of the Women's Support Center based in Yerevan highlights the current situation in Armenia and the importance of passing legislation on domestic violence.
Every year the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets organizes the collection of flowers laid at the Genocide Memorial on April 24. The flowers are then recycled into handmade paper.
Varak Ketsemanian presents a critical analysis of Sona B. Dadoyan’s work, “2015, The Armenian Condition in Hindsight and Foresight: A Discourse,” a timely and critical piece of scholarship that sheds light on the intellectual crisis of the 21st century Armenian reality.
This year, the Zoryan Institute for Contemporary Research and Documentation marks its 35th anniversary. The Institute's core concept is to serve the cause of scholarship and public awareness relating to issues of universal human rights, genocide and diaspora-homeland relations.
Awarded on behalf of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide, co-founders of the initiative Ruben Vardanyan and Noubar Afeyan announced the nominees for the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity 2017 in Yerevan on April 24.
We need a social reformation to find the path to hope and the transformation starts with ourselves. Ahead of the 102nd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, Maria Titizian writes about the importance of having hope.
In this post-Election essay, Paul Chaderjian reflects on how a group of his peers, men and women from all walks of life, made a collective effort on April 2 to serve as citizen observers in the homeland.
Security expert Samvel Martirosyan writes that Armenia and Azerbaijan are not only waging war on the battlefield but in the media, through social networks, on academic platforms - all platforms where it is possible to disseminate information and propaganda.
Irony lurks in every corner of Armenia, writes Sergey Sargsyan, the "Russian boy" who went into the voting booth and got himself a neat Armenian accent.
In this moving piece, Paul Chaderjian writes about belonging and identity, of hovering in a ‘Go Between’ space, suspended between two worlds and how unexpected encounters make connecting to the concept of home a reality.
Arto Vaun writes about the passing of Artur Sargsyan, the man who broke through heavy police barricades to deliver food to the Sasna Dzrer and in doing so, became something of a legend.
Why is Arshaluys Amsih, originally from Lebanon, spending two years in the border town of Berd? She is one of the growing numbers of Teach for Armenia Fellows teaching disadvantaged children in Armenia’s underserved regional schools.