WEST LOS ANGELES–Representatives of the Armenian National Committee of America -Western Region met with Rep. Henry Waxman (D-29) on Monday to discuss key political issues and brief the Congressman on the organization’s legislative priorities for the 2002 calendar year.
ANCA-WR Board of Directors member Raffi Hamparian was accompanied by Executive Director Alex Sardar and Government Relations Director Ardashes Kassakhian. The three representatives briefed Rep. Waxman on the concerns that Armenian Americans have regarding the Presidential waiver of Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act as well as the current state of affairs regarding pipeline plans vis–vis Armenia and Azerbaijan.
Kassakhian explained to the Congressman the security issues that were of concern to Armenia’s in the region in light of the recent military aid package approved for Azerbaijan from the United States. He also informed the Congressman that without realistic guarantees for security–military assistance to a rogue nation like Azerbaijan–which has a reputation for hosting Al Qaeda terrorist cells–would be against US interests.
During the meeting local issues such asredistricting and its impact on the Armenian community of Hollywood were also discussed. Rep. Waxman pledged continued support for acknowledgment of the Armenian Genocide in Congress. Waxman–a member of the Armenian Caucus–was a cosponsor of H.Res. 398–the Armenian Genocide Resolution–which was introduced during the last Congressional session but failed to come to a vote on the House floor following heavy pressure upon House Speaker Hastert (R-IL) from the State Department and the Clinton Administration.
The meeting was in a series of Congressional meetings–which comprise the ANCA-WR 2002 Congressional Outreach Campaign and aim to educate and familiarize Members of Congress on the concerns of their Armenian American constituents.
The Armenian National Committee of America is the largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots political organization. The ANCA actively advances a broad range of issues of concern to the Armenian-American community.