RECEPTION PRESENTS ANC ACTIVISTS OPPORTUNITY TO DISCUSS ISSUES WITH ARMENIAN CAUCUS CO-CHAIR
ENCINO–On Sunday–June 22–the Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region (ANCA-WR) hosted a special reception honoring Armenian Issues Caucus Co-Chair Congressman Frank Pallone–Jr. (D-NJ) at the home of ANC activists Steven and Shaghig Dadaian in Encino–California.
Steven Dadaian introduced Congressman Pallone by highlighting his leadership on Armenian American issues and his relationship with the Armenian National Committee. Congressman Pallone–who is the founder and co-chair of the Armenian Issues Caucus in the US House of Representatives–credited the ANC for its hard work and grass roots activism that have helped raise awareness and advance a wide range of issues in Congress. He shared with the audience his views on a wide range of issues and legislation that the Caucus on Armenian Issues is focusing on during the current Congressional session.
Congressman Pallone also spoke about the prospects of House Resolution 193–a bill the Representative co-authored and introduced in April. The Resolution sites the Armenian Genocide as a specific example of genocide in the twentieth century. The bill has appreciated bi-partisan support with over 120 members of Congress signing on as co-sponsors. The Judiciary Committee voted last month to adopt the bill as is–which the Congressman pointed out was a very good sign.
During his in-depth discussion–Congressman Pallone criticized the Bush Administration’s efforts to cut foreign aid to Armenia while increasing aide to Azerbaijan and Georgia. He also mentioned the importance of drawing attention to the Amnesty International Report issued on May 19–2003 that criticizes Azerbaijan–Georgia and Turkey for the human rights violations that are taking place during the construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil and gas pipeline.
Congressman Pallone was first elected to Congress in 1988 and is serving his 8th term as a Representative of New Jersey’s 6th Congressional District that covers most of Middlesex County and portions of Monmouth County–including the Bayshore and other communities on the Atlantic Ocean.
In 1995–Congressman Pallone co-founded the Armenian Issues Caucus with Congressman John Porter (R-IL) in order to educate fellow members of Congress about issues that affect Armenian Americans–and the then–newly independent Republic of Armenia. Since the founding of the Caucus–Rep. Pallone has been at the forefront of efforts to pass a Genocide Resolution in Congress–increase foreign aid to Armenia and Nagorno Karabagh and call on Turkey and Azerbaijan to lift their illegal blockades of Armenia.