Burbank City Hall (photo Los Angeles, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons)

City of Burbank Recognizes Independent Republic of Artsakh, Rescinds Friendship City Status of Hadrut

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BURBANK, Calif. (thebluntpost.com) – The City of Burbank unanimously adopted a resolution recognizing the Independent Republic of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) and rescinding the friendship city status of the town of Hadrut in Artsakh during its March 2 city council meeting. The Council requested for the city staff to write the final text of the resolution to be approved in the next few weeks.

The request for the City of Burbank to consider the resolution was initiated by the Armenian-American journalist, radio host, and activist, Vic Gerami. It was sponsored by Councilmember Nick Schultz.

“As an Armenian-American who grew up in Burbank, this is a very important recognition for me. I am grateful for Councilmember Nick Schultz for sponsoring the resolution, as well as other Councilmembers for their vote.” Vic Gerami, the host of the Blunt Post with VIC on KPFK 90.7 FM.

He continued, “Burbank is known as the ‘Media Capital of the World,’ so this historic move will have significant reverberations and send a clear message that Burbank stands for human rights, people’s right to self-determination, and in support of its large Armenian-American community.”

Burbank is a city built by people, pride, and progress. These three ingredients turned a tiny, rural town into the thriving community it is today. Throughout its 100-year history, Burbank has embodied a forward-thinking city that provides a high quality of life and strong sense of community to its residents. In keeping with this tradition, the city will continue to combine 21st century technology with the same small town feel that will make Burbank an ideal place to live, work and play for years to come.

Armenians make up more than 10% of Burbank’s population. The total population at the 2010 census was 103,340. Since 1990, the number of Armenians in Burbank has nearly quintupled, from 2,780 to 13,846, according to the most recent census data. This number is likely much higher now as it does not reflect the results of the most recent census conducted in 2020.

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“Early last month, I spoke with Vic Gerami about the steps taken by our regional partners (e.g., Los Angeles, Glendale, and West Hollywood) to formally recognize the Independent Republic of Artsakh. He encouraged the Burbank City Council to take action and I am thankful that he brought it to our attention. He was quickly joined by many members of our community,” said Councilmember Schultz.

He added, “Tonight the Burbank City Council unanimously requested that city staff bring back a resolution to finalize this recognition. This step will be incredibly meaningful to the Armenian members of our community who have been directly and indirectly impacted by the violence and loss of life stemming from the military aggression by Azerbaijan in the region. I look forward to formalizing this recognition of Artsakh in furtherance of promoting democracy and the right to self-determination.”

Approximately 900,000 Armenians live in California, 700,000 of whom in the greater Los Angeles area, including West Hollywood, Hollywood, East Hollywood (Little Armenia), Glendale, Burbank, Pasadena, and throughout the San Fernando Valley.

Ten (states across the US have recognized the Independent Republic of Artsakh so far. They are California, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan Minnesota and Rhode Island. Cities that have recognized Artsakh include Los Angeles, Glendale, West Hollywood, Fresno County, Highland, Gardena, Fort Lee Borough, Fowler, Englewood Cliffs, Clark County, Ridgefield, Cliffside Park, and Orange County.

In addition to dozens of cities across the US, hundreds of cities and principalities in France and Italy have recognized Artsakh, as well as cities in the United Kingdom, Spain, Uruguay, and Guatemala.

On November 25, 20202, the French Senate voted 305-1 recognizing the independence of the Republic of Artsakh, calling upon the US administration and Congressional leaders to take similar action.

Following the Senate’s vote, on December 3, 2020, France’s National Assembly approved a resolution calling on the government to recognize Artsakh as a “republic.” The resolution was adopted in the Assembly with 188 “yes” votes against three “no” votes, while 16 deputies

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