The president of the Union of Greek Communities of Armenia, Maria Lazareva, sends her own message, through Proto Thema, during these difficult times.
Armenian forces in Artsakh are fighting the Turkish-sponsored Azeri aggression and there are many Greeks living in Armenia who are fighting for the homeland where they were born, grew up and today are its citizens.
Today, it is estimated that 1,000 expatriates of Pontic origin live in Armenia, mainly in the northern part of the country and in the provinces of Shirac, Lori and the border region of Tavos close to Georgia, but also in the capital city of Yerevan. There is also a smaller Greek community in Artsakh that is being challenged once again in its modern history.
Lazareva spoke of the Greek community’s challenges in the face of Azerbaijan’s invasion attempt of Artsakh.
“In Armenia, this struggle is called a ‘Struggle for existence.’ And indeed, this is not just a piece of land, as the Azeris say, but a homeland, a heritage and a culture,” pointed out Lazera to Proto Thema, before also highlighting that there is not the slightest hint of Azeri and Islamic heritage in Artsakh.
“Go to Artsakh and show me the Azeri-Islamic cultural heritage. You will not find anything, but you will find old Armenian monasteries and khachkars (typical Armenian medieval crosses). Armenians do not have to prove whose country this is,” she said.
“The morale of the Armenians in Armenia and Artsakh, but also of the Greeks who live there, is very high and everyone, without exception, is ready to run to the front line. There is no fear at all in the Greek community or in the whole of Armenia. Unfortunately, war and conflict are not new to our lives. Even in the last days when the Azeris target the civilian population, when our villages and cities are being bombed, the people are fearless and united,” said Lazareva.
She makes it known that many Greeks that are citizens of the Republic of Armenia and the yet-to-be internationally recognized Republic of Artsakh, are fighting on the side of the Armenian forces.
“Most Greeks living in Armenia are citizens of the Republic of Armenia. So this is our duty to protect our homeland. Yes, soldiers and volunteers of Greek origin are fighting alongside the Armenian forces. But now there are no Greek, Russian, Kurd, Yazidi and other ethnic minorities in Armenia. We are a people and we all protect our common homeland,” Lazareva highlighted.
On the occasion of communicating with the Greek public opinion, through Proto Thema , the president of the Union of Greek Communities Armenia, sends her own message during these difficult times for both Armenians and Greeks in Armenia and Artsakh.
“No people in the world can understand the situation and fate of the Armenians like the Greeks. So our Greek friends and brothers, in this struggle we must be united. I repeat, this war is not for land, but for freedom, for peace, so our struggle is fair,” she said.