Prelate's Message

HOLY SEE LAWSUIT AGAINST TURKEY CONTINUES

As is known, on the centennial of the Armenian Genocide in 2015, the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia, as the rightful heir to the historical Catholicosate of Sis, filed a lawsuit against Turkey. Pandemic-related disruptions have slowed down the legal proceedings but the case is moving ahead.

Following several delays caused by the Covid emergency, the court held its first hearing on March 30, 2021. A new hearing date is still pending because of health restrictions. The Catholicosate’s legal team, led by His Holiness Catholicos Aram I, follows the developments closely.

The Catholicosate’s lawsuit, as the continuation of the claim submitted at European Court of Human Rights, was filed on July 30, 2019 in the Kozan (Sis) Court of First Instance.

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The grounds of the Armenian Monastery of St. Magar, in the northern part of Cyprus illegally occupied by Turkey, were used by a group of Turkish young people for concert. The performance was followed by partying that was inappropriate for a religious site.

The incident prompted the repudiation by the religious and political leadership of Cyprus. The Pontifical Vicar of Cyprus, His Eminence Archbishop Khoren Doghramadjian, the Greek Patriarchate, the mufti of Cyprus, as well as the ambassadors of Sweden and the United States, the Cyprus representative of the European Court of Justice, the Cypriot official in charge of community relations, House Representative of Cyprus Armenians Vartkes Mahdessian, and other officials have condemned this desecrating act and sent a letter of protest to the European Parliament and the United Nations.

Archbishop Khoren has kept His Holiness informed on the matter. The Catholicos has advised him to condemn in his name this inacceptable incident and to follow closely the developments related to St. Magar.

On June 2019, Catholicos Aram I, accompanied by Archbishop Khoren and representative Mahdessian, paid an informal visit to the monastery of St. Magar and saw for himself the current state of the monastery and familiarized himself with the work to renovate it as well as to guarantee its security.