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 September 19, 2003 

National News: Conference ponders the Armenian Condition

Experts gathered in Armenia this week for an international congress on Armenology.

The five-day gathering titled "Contemporary conditions of Armenology and its development prospects" opened September 15 at the National Academy of Armenia.

For the first time scientists from around the world have been discussing Armenology in Yerevan as an important branch of science. The conference was initiated by Yerevan State University and the National Academy of Sciences.

"The convention of the congress in our republic is of historic importance," chairman of the National Academy of Sciences Fadey Sargsyan told the opening ceremony. "Its goal is to unite Armenologists from Armenia, Diaspora and foreign countries and strengthen their cooperation."

President Robert Kocharyan addressed a message to the participants and the Catholicos of All Armenians Garegin II gave his patriarchal blessing.

More than 80 Diaspora scientists, historians and culturologists from 25 countries have been discussing important issues concerning Armenian history, culture and the Armenian Church. In all, 200 participants were registered with 180 of them expected to make speeches at the congress.

At the first session, Academician of the National Academy of Sciences Vladimir Barkhudaryan said Armenology in the independent Republic of Armenia has better opportunities for development than before under Soviet ideology.

Historian Richard Hovhannisyan from the United States presented his lecture titled "Armenology at the Crossroads" emphasizing the fact that despite recent successes, it was time to start seriously thinking about future developments.

"We Armenologists, know each other's names, especially abroad, however, we have no occasions for getting to know each other," he said. "From this point of view I consider the possibility of hearing each other's opinions and points of view during the congress to be very important."

Professor Hovhannisian believes that it is very important to make Armenian historical and cultural experiences part of world history and human memory.

Doctor of art criticism Henrik Hovhannisyan said: "Armenology is a foundation of our science and our world view. We can say it is a cornerstone of the national ideology. In this respect the Armenology Congress is of great importance."

He believes it is natural for different points of view and approaches to be expressed within the science.

"We shouldn't receive it as a negative phenomenon, moreover, there is no reason to give a political coloring to the congress at all," he said.

Participants of the congress continued their work in sessions devoted to fields such as history, philology and culture. Another group considered the relationship of the Armenian Church and Armenology.


According to Agnes
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September 15, Progressive Youth Union of Armenia demonstrated its attitude towards ArmenTel by protesting in front of the buiding of the telecommunication company with posters saying, "We demand quality communication". People passing by joined the protesters trampling down telephones. No connection, no need in phones.



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