NEW YORK–The Armenian National Committee of America, Eastern Region (ANCA-ER) welcomed Monday the launching of Genocide Prevention Project (GPP), a newly created organization working to expand the outreach and mobilization of advocacy action during times of mass atrocity and genocide.
"The ANCA is very enthusiastic about the launch of Genocide Prevention Project as an invaluable tool to help end the cycle of genocide," said ANCA ER Executive Director Karine Birazian. "We look forward to working with their New York headquarters to expand the anti-genocide constituency in the United States, as part of the effort to end the Darfur genocide and prevent future crimes against humanity."
Originally launched in 2007 under the banner "Dream for Darfur," GPP activists called on 2008 Olympics host country, China, to encourage Sudan to end atrocities committed against the people of Darfur. The effort drew international attention, spotlighting the ongoing genocide in the region, which has already cost some 400,000 lives. Following the Olympics closing ceremonies, GPP expanded its efforts and began work with survivors and the anti-genocide constituency on a wide rang of genocide prevention efforts.
"The best way to stop genocide is to prevent it from happening," said Jill Savitt, Executive Director of the Genocide Prevention Project. "We are organizing survivors of past genocides, and their descendants and friends, to call on the global community to adopt a prevention framework ‘s pro-active diplomatic activity at the earliest stages of conflict. We will use Genocide Prevention Month next April to educate and motivate a civic response calling for an end to genocide and mass atrocity crimes."
GPP’s website, http://www.preventORprotect.org includes information on past genocides from Armenia to Rwanda, information on the genocide in Darfur as well as the special feature – "30 Days of Action in April," which provides ways for the international community to join the movement and show their support for genocide prevention. The organization also released a letter from genocide survivors marking the 60th Anniversary of the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which called for the international community to prevent genocide, mass atrocities and protect civilians under attack. Amongst the signatories were Armenian Genocide survivors Adriyan Bagciyan, Arsalos Dadir, Onorik Eminian, Hingeni Evernsel, Perouz Kalousdian, Charlotte Kechejian and Alice Shnorhokian.
The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.