Call for #KampArmen : “We will be here not only to protect the buildings, but also our history”

The solidarity vigil that began at Kamp Armen (Tuzla Children’s Camp) after heavy machinery entered the site continued all day and through the night. Nor Zartonk (New Renascense), Dört Ayaklı Şehir (Quadruped City) and İstanbul Kent Savunması (Istanbul Urban Defence) issued a collective call to attend the solidarity vigil.

Nor Zartonk appealed to “everyone who says ‘Never Again’ to the Genocide, opposes the discrimination, intimidation and destruction policies against Armenians and all peoples, and supports the struggle for coexistence”.

The call also stated the following:

“We are here, at Kamp Armen, built by the effort of more than 1500 Armenian children, each stone carried by the small but persevering hands of those children, blocking the passage of bulldozers and construction machinery, which aim to uproot the trees they planted.”

“What they aim to demolish today is not merely a derelict building they have long sentenced to rot, and turned a blind eye to its destruction under insurmountable bureaucratic procedures, or the nature that surrounds it, once lovingly nourished by children. What they aim to demolish today is an orphanage, built by the committed effort of more than 1500 impoverished, orphaned children, a place that had become “home” for them. An orphanage where impoverished Armenian children who grew up on these lands in the aftermath of the Genocide, the families or extended families of which witnessed the Genocide, a place where they sought to cope with their pain and loss, a place where they once again generated life and hope.”

“Amidst these interrelated experiences of oblivion and destruction in the city, our call is to collectively transform this site which stands witness to history, pain, loss and hope into a zone of resistance! Because Kamp Armen has been trusted to us by Armenian children who survived the Genocide, and because this camp, which they want to demolish now, is our common past, memory, and hope for coexistence, of everyone who lives on these lands!”

In a statement, İstanbul Kent Savunması (Istanbul Urban Defence) said, “We will be at Kamp Armen because we have not only to protect the buildings, but also our memory. The Tuzla Armenian Orphanage is not alone! Hrant’s memory belongs to all of us!” and issued a call for support and solidarity.

Click here for detailed information on how to get to Kamp Armen.


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