Armenians call on Concordia University to cancel event with Turkish Ambassador

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 Nagorno-Karabaկh.

The region inhabited by native Armenians for over 2000 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 the 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.”

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