A sizable audience gathered at the Armenian Heritage Park. (Ken Martin photo)

BOSTON — On Sunday, April 21, the Armenian Heritage Park was the site of the second statewide Genocide commemoration this April; the first was the State House on Friday, April 19.

A substantial audience of Armenians and friends from throughout New England gathered at the Park near the Genocide monument as master of ceremonies Hagop Toghramadjian introduced speakers, clergy, vocalists, who expressed a message of continued survival and positivity for the Armenian world.

Young attendees just enjoyed the beautiful park setting. (Ken Martin photo)

A color guard of marching Homenetmen Scouts brought the meeting to order followed by prayers from the Boston area clergy. The Meghedi Ensemble sang the national anthems of the United States and the Republic of Armenia.

An integral portion of the event was dedicated to the ethnic cleansing — called by many the second genocide of the Armenians — of Artsakh (Nagorno Karabakh) by Azerbaijani military forces last September, and the hardships of those who fled to Armenia.

Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian (Ken Martin photo)

Peter Koutoujian, Sheriff of Middlesex County, spoke warmly about the people of Artsakh and the time he shared with them during his visit to the capital, Stepanakert. Koutoujian said that now was not the time to feel down, but that everyone must remain active and positive about the future and work for a brighter future despite all that is happening in the world lately and in and around Armenia.

Vocalist Angelina Nazarian, a student at Berklee School of Music, and a former contestant on NBC’s competition show, “The Voice,” captured the audience’s attention singing in Armenian and English including heartfelt renditions of Sareri Hovin Mernem and Yesterday by Charles Aznavour.

Angelina Nazarian (Ken Martin photo)

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Special guest and keynote speaker was Siranush Sargsyan, a historian and journalist who was living and reporting from the scene in Stepanakert and Artsakh during the September 2023 attack by Azerbaijan, escaping in the caravan of vehicles through the mountains to Armenia.

Sargsyan holds a Bachelor’s Degree in History from Artsakh State University and a Master’s Degree in Political Science from the Public Administration Academy in Yerevan, Armenia, and is currently a Tavitian Scholar at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.

Keynote speaker Siranush Sargsyan (Ken Martin photo)

Sargsyan addressed the audience as descendants of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide and introduced herself as a survivor of yet another Armenian Genocide, this time in the ancient Armenian land of Artsakh, commemorating the atrocities committed against their compatriots over a century ago. She told the people that “the Genocide left unprevented, inadequately condemned, and devoid of reparations, has led to further massacres and ethnic cleansing of our indigenous Armenian populations.” She said because of this the Armenian Genocide cycle had not been broken in Artsakh, her birthplace. “The target and the goal remain the same – to destroy, eliminate, and ethnically cleanse us as a nation.”

Master of Ceremonies Hagop Toghramadjian (Ken Martin photo)

Sargsyan said that over her recent years as a journalist she has shared the stories of the forgotten people of Artsakh, “who were besieged, faced starvation, and lived through terror.” She told heart rending stories including of a 9-year-old boy, Areg, from Horatagh village, who on September 19, 2023, when Azerbaijan attacked, asked his mother while the sound of bombs exploding was heard if he would still be alive after the war. Sargsyan said he was killed a few minutes later with his grandmother.

“The triangle of our nation — Armenia, diaspora, and Artsakh — has been shattered,” Sargsyan said. “With Artsakh lost and Armenia’s future in jeopardy, the diaspora, represented by you, becomes the heart of Armenia and the people of Artsakh in turn, we are the essence of the diaspora.”

A sizable audience gathered at the Armenian Heritage Park. (Ken Martin photo)

She still has hope and strength that, “We, the people of Artsakh, will endure, and we must secure the right to return to our homeland with a guarantee of safety That together Armenians are capable of enduring and more so thriving to ensure the future generations of our nation is stronger and more resilient.”

Nazarian closed the commemoration with an unforgettable performance of Rise Up.


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