On Thursday, Feb. 15 at the University of California, Bell Tower the Armenian Student Association (ASA) protested Turkey and the United States’ refusal to recognize the Armenian Genocide. ASA students covered their mouths with duct tape while sitting down and holding signs that “spread awareness on Turkey’s and the United States’ denial of the Armenian Genocide,” said ASA Vice President Angela Burmayan, The Highlander reports.
The demonstration is held on UC and Cal State campuses every year to remind students of the importance of the issue, with the duct tape meant to symbolize the US’ failure to acknowledge the Genocide. Among the around 20 participants were students from the UCR ASA chapter as well as the Middle Eastern Student Center.
Burmayan, a fourth-year biology major, in an interview with The Highlander, explained that the reactions from passersby were “typically very positive.” She continued, “A lot of the time we will get people who have not heard about the issue and want to learn more about it.”
Another Armenian student and treasurer for UCR ASA, Maher Zaher, said that it is important for people “not to remain silent … by remembering it, you are using your voice to minimize the chances of any other future atrocities.” Zaher, a fourth-year environmental engineering major, thanked students for their support and willingness to learn.
Another event, entitled “Flowers of the Fallen” will be held the week of April 24 to commemorate the 103rd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.