Israeli President Promises ‘Big Step’ to Armenian Community

Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin speaks at the UN General Assembly

YEREVAN (Mediamax)—The Israeli Armenian community is outraged about President Reuven Rivlin’s attempt to equate the Armenian Genocide of 1915 with the Khojaly events of the Karabakh War during his speech at the UN General Assembly.

Last week, President Rivlin addressed the UN General Assembly, in which he mentioned the 1915 Armenian Genocide.

“In 1915, the days of the Armenian Genocide, Avshalom Feinberg of the NILI underground [a Jewish spy network in Ottoman Palestine] wrote the following: ‘My teeth have been worn away by anger, who is next? I have walked on sacred and holy ground, on the road to Jerusalem, and asked myself if it is this time that we live in -1915 – or in the days of Titus or Nebuchadnezzar?” said the Israeli President in his speech.

Rivlin then added: “Is our struggle, the struggle of this Assembly, against genocide, effective enough? Was it effective enough then in Bosnia? Was it effective in preventing the killing in Khojaly?”

Talking to Mediamax, Head of the Armenian National Committee of Jerusalem Georgette Avagian said she was surprised that one of the pioneers of Armenian Genocide recognition in Israel, Reuven Rivlin, didn’t call the Armenian Genocide by name directly. Avagian also noted that previously, as a President of the Knesset, Rivlin had repeatedly blocked Azerbaijani efforts to submit a draft law on Khojaly to the Knesset.

“It was Rivlin, as a Knesset Spokesman, that didn’t allow such a draft law to be submitted to the parliament. And now I am very much surprised by the way he speaks about the events. It’s obvious that his stance has been influenced by the political interests and intentions with Azerbaijan,” said Georgette Avagian.

She said that the Armenian National Committee informed the President about the flaws in the speech. The President’s Office responded to Avagian, saying, “The President will take a big step towards Armenians.”

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