Chris Bohjalian discusses recent trip to Artsakh in New York

N.Y. Times Bestselling Author Chris Bohjalian Presents ‘Artsakh: Our Line in the Sand;’ Fundraising Held for Arajamugh Village Expansion Project

Armenian Weekly — Fifty friends and supporters of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) gathered in New York on October 29, to hear New York Times bestselling author Chris Bohjalian discuss his recent trip to Artsakh.

Held at the Tufenkian Artisan Carpets Showroom in midtown Manhattan, Bohjalian’s presentation called “Artsakh: Our Line in the Sand,” vividly described Artsakh’s current conditions, especially in light of the recent Four Day War in April. Bohjalian spent much time with people living near the front lines, and in the liberated territories—especially those areas in and around the Lachin Corridor.

During his five-day visit, Bohjalian also met with Artsakh government officials, everyday heroes—both military and civilian—as well as students, teachers, and literary figures, who were eager to meet him and learn more about his work.

chris-bohjalianSince his return, Bohjalian has been busy putting pen to paper, recounting his impressions in articles in various publications, including USA Today, the Burlington Free Press, and other U.S. media outlets. His most recent story depicted the life of a Syrian-Armenian refugee who escaped from the clutches of Daesh (ISIS/ISIL) with his family, and resettled in the liberated territories of Artsakh, where he has received a warm welcome.

The event was co-organized by ACAA Artsakh Fund and the Tufenkian Foundation. Antranig Kasbarian opened the program by explaining the significance of recent events in Artsakh, particularly April’s Four Day War, and emphasized the crucial strategic importance of the liberated territories in maintaining Artsakh’s national security, as they promote an indivisible bond with Armenia.

Kasbarian noted that areas near the Lachin Corridor, routinely called “occupied territories,” are in fact the cradle of Armenian Christianity, with centuries-old villages, cemeteries, churches, and other cultural artifacts attesting to widespread, continuous Armenian presence there—before Azerbaijan’s wholesale ethnic cleansing of these territories in the 1920’s. Kasbarian then introduced Bohjalian, whose longstanding interest in Artsakh became a pressing concern following April’s Four Day War.

Following his presentation, Bohjalian patiently answered numerous questions from his enthusiastic audience.

In addition to promoting awareness, the October 29 event also raised funds for the Arajamugh Village Expansion Project, which is being implemented by the ACAA Artsakh Fund, with the support of the Tufenkian Foundation. Arajamugh village is located in the liberated territories of NKR. Those who wish to donate to this worthy project may do so by sending checks to ACAA Artsakh Fund, 80 Bigelow Ave., Watertown, Massachusetts 02472.

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