YEREVAN (Hayots Ashkhar/Noyan Tapan)–The fifth Armenian Revolutionary Federation Youth Jamboree began at Lake Sevan–August 1. More than 650 AYF members from around the world are participating in this 17 day camp.
The first day began with a 6 am singing of the Armenian national anthem at the flag ceremony. It was followed by the blessing of the jamboree delivered by Primate Anania of the Gegharkounik Diocese. He also conveyed the warm greetings of His Holiness Karekin I–Catholicos of All Armenia’s.
Armenia’s Education and Sciences Minister Artashes Petrossian read a welcoming message from Prime Minister Robert Kocharian.
Armenian Revolutionary Federation-Armenia Executive Council member Rouben Hakopian greeted the participants on behalf of the ARF.
Also present at the official opening of the jamboree were members of the National Assembly–official guests–representatives of humanitarian and social organizations–political parties–defense attorneys of the "Trial of 31," as well as ARF workers and media representatives.
Jamboree participants will address issues concerning Armenia’s both in Armenia and the Diaspora–and the question of the Armenian Cause.
They will become familiar with the social–cultural–economic and political condition of Armenia; evaluate them and try to apply solutions.
Participants will also visit relevant ministries and establishmen’s.
Additionally–a round table discussion with the participation of all political parties operating in Armenia is scheduled.
Participants will sightsee at Dzidzernagapert–Yeraploor–St. Etchmiadzin–as well as visit military bases in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Vigen Kyufekchian–a jamboree leader–observed that such large gatherings are being held in Armenia for the first time.
According to him–"the major objective of the Jamboree is to provide Diasporan youth with the opportunity to come in close contact with their homeland–feel their native earth and water–feel what it means to be an Armenian–to obtain knowledge of their homeland–and enjoy the beauty of Armenia."
The Jamboree will conclude in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Among those participating in the Jamboree are more than 50 Armenian Youth Federation members from the Western United States.