The Armenian Student Associations of Canada inform you of an extreme case of a violation of academic integrity in Concordia. It has come to our attention that the following student organizations: the Strategic and Diplomatic Society and the International Relations Society, under the umbrella organization of the Political Science Student Association, are to host an event tomorrow, on March 19th, regarding the Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) conflict. The organizations are scheduled to host Mr. Karim Uras, the Turkish Ambassador to Canada to give a “unique perspective” on the Artsakh war, the Armenian Student Associations of Canada and the Armenian National Committee of Quebec informs Zartonk Media.
We urge you to recognize that hosting Turkey’s representative unopposed and providing the Government of Turkey an academic platform to discuss the Artsakh Waris unethical, at best. During the entirety of the Artsakh War, systematic ethnic cleansing of Armenians was at the forefront of the Turkish and Azerbaijani governments’ objectives yet again. This event is extremely racist in nature. The Republics of Turkey and Azerbaijan have a campaign of Genocide denialism engraved in their foreign policy.
This event is not meant to be a dialogue between two nation-states and their perspectives, as these organizations have not reached out to all the concerned parties involved. This biased stage is a clear violation of academic integrity, and we believe this event will undermine Concordia University’s values and damage its image within the international academic sphere. This conference will offer the Turkish regime a platform for direct disinformation inside a University which hosts the largest Armenian student community in Canada.
After receiving comments on the event’s Facebook posts expressing the unconscionable decision to allow for a genocide-perpetrator government to provide their “perspective” on the conflict, the organizations mentioned above proceeded to delete any comments that questioned their decision to host a representative of an aggressor nation to speak about the ethnic conflict of a people against whom they have committed genocide.
We urge you to immediately cancel this extremely racist and disrespectful event which offers a free and uncontested platform to an official of Turkey to spread their Armenophobia and hate against the indigenous population of Artsakh.
Concordia Armenian Students’ Union |
McGill Armenian Students’ Association | firstname.lastname@example.org
Association des Étudiants Arméniens de l’Université de Montréal | email@example.com
Armen Karo Student Organization | firstname.lastname@example.org
As Zartonk Media was informed from the Armenian National Committee of Quebec, the statement runs as follows,
“Montreal, QC – The Armenian National Committee of Quebec has been made aware that Concordia University’s Strategic and Diplomatic Society and International Relations Society have organized an online event on March 19th, 2021, where the Turkish ambassador, Mr. Karim Uras, will be discussing the recent circumstances concerning the region of Artsakh. A region inhabited by native Armenians for over 2,000 years and came under attack by Azerbaijan in late 2020. Upon further review, Concordia’s Armenian Student Association approached the event organizers to ask for fair representation and equitable discussion, allowing for the Armenian ambassador of Canada to participate as well. Instead of Concordia University reviewing the matter and allowing a fair and healthy debate, the request went unconfirmed, stating the invitation will only be extended if the Turkish embassy gave consent. Although the event organizers agreed to host an event later with an Armenian ambassador, the second event will not be allowed to be publicized during the Friday night discussion.
The ANCQ, as well as the Armenian community as a whole, which count thousands of graduates from its alma mater, are deeply disturbed and ashamed by the actions taken this week, not only by Concordia University, but by the Political Science Department for allowing such brazen lobbying by the Turkish embassy. Ararad Torosyan, Co-President of the ANCQ says “The Turkish ambassadors of past and present have always been very active when it came to rewriting and reshaping the narrative of a story they don’t agree with. In the past, they tried organizing events about the denial of the Armenian Genocide in Concordia and Mcgill Universities but faced backlash from Armen Karo Student Association, the ASA members, AYF and ANCQ. Now they are using their influence once more to write their own narrative. How can Turkey be invited to a meeting and take an impartial stance when it was actively involved in the destruction of Artsakh with Canadian made technology. Erdogan just yesterday confirmed Turkey’s involvement. This is unacceptable for Canadian Armenians in general. Turkey is trying to shape and poison the minds of students with their own narrative and using the university political science division as a tool to do so”
Source: Armenian National Committee of Quebec
Contact Information: Ararad Torosyan