The champion of the recently adopted Armenian Genocide resolution in Canada’s House of Commons–the Honorable Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral–along with Armenian Revolutionary Federation Bureau member Hagop Der Khatchadourian–attended the 10th annual Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) Observance on Capitol Hill to honor victims and survivors of the Armenian Genocide. The program–which took place on April 28–was held in the historic Cannon Caucus Room.
During her one-day visit–Dalphond-Guiral took the opportunity to visit the ANCA offices–and was briefed by Khatchadourian and ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian–on the numerous and diverse ANCA activities.
ANCA Representatives–along with regional and local ANC representatives–accompanied the Canadian parliamentarian to offices of those Congressmen who work diligently to advance Armenian American issues.
In what was a most memorable visit–Congressman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) bombarded Dalphond-Guiral with questions about the activities and details that led to the positive vote in Canada’s House of Commons.
During the Capitol Hill Observance that evening–author Peter Balakian–along with Dalphond-Guiral–were honored for their tireless efforts to advance the Armenian Genocide issue–and their commitment to the Armenian community.
Many Senators and Representatives expressed their support not only for official US recognition of the Armenian Genocide–but also for monetary and other assistance to strengthen the government of Armenia. They commended the ANCA for their work–unwavering commitment–and ability to rally absolute support. They also addressed the importance of Canadian Parliament’s resolution–its potential to spur similar activity in US Congress.
Over 400 community members and guests greeted Dalphond-Guiral with lingering cheers as she got up to speak.
After presenting her brief biography–Dalphond-Guiral explained that the debate on the Armenian Genocide is nothing new in Canada’s House of Commons–beginning with efforts in the 1980s. Since then–five motions and several debates have succeeded one another in the House–all aimed at having Canada acknowledge the 1915 genocide of Armenia’s.
After three attempts by Dalphond-Guiral–(the first two motions were never put to a vote) Motion M-380 was adopted on April 21.
"What seemed to be impossible–voting on acknowledgment of the Armenian Genocide–became possible…"
She applauded Canada’s Armenian community–particularly the network of Armenian National Committees.
"This community’s determination–perseverance–and attachment to its identity are models for all of us. Over the decades–through its unwavering demand for acknowledgment of the genocide of 1915–it has given us the right to think that faith can move mountains. It was the steadfast support of Armenia’s–young and old–that persuaded Canada to join its voice to those of the parliamen’s of Argentina–Belgium–Cyprus–France–Greece–Italy–Lebanon–Russia–Sweden–Switzerland–Uruguay–the Vatican–the European Parliament–the European Council and almost 30 American states–including Missouri–Nevada–South Carolina–Florida–Arizona–Washington–Virginia–Illinois–Michigan–New York–New Jersey–and California. Here is the true glory of freedom and democracy," concluded Dalphond-Guiral.