| U.S. Congressman calls for condemnation of Azerbaijani aggression
June 23, 2012
Earlier this week, as part of the Terjenian-Thomas Internship Program, the 2012 intern class met with Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), reported the Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly).
In providing an overview of U.S. policy in the South Caucasus region, Congressman Pallone shared his concern regarding the recent ceasefire violations on the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, and expressed his disappointment that the State Department did not do more publicly to condemn Azerbaijan's latest assault.
Pallone also discussed the Nagorno Karabakh peace process, noting that such acts of aggression by Azerbaijan did not help facilitate a peaceful settlement but rather served to undermine the mediation efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs.
Turning to current legislative items, in addition to the Armenian Genocide resolution, Congressman Pallone also discussed his ongoing concerns with H.R. 2362, the Indian Tribal Trade and Investment Demonstration Act.
The Bill aims to give Turkey preferential access to tribal lands and give Turkish enterprises an unfair advantage here in the United States. "While there is no disagreement that the United States government should seek measures to invigorate the economy and promote economic development in Indian Country, providing monopoly access to Turkey only gives them a pass on their actions which run counter to U.S. interests," stated Congressman Pallone.
Congressman Pallone encouraged those present to continue to remain involved in the Assembly's advocacy efforts and also to help educate others on the issues facing Armenia and Karabakh.
"The Armenian Caucus plays an important role in helping to strengthen the U.S.-Armenia relationship," stated Alissa Tabirian, a Russian and East European Studies major at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. "The meeting was insightful and we appreciated the fact that the Congressman not only addressed current issues, but also helped us to better understand the actions that we must take in order to aid future progress in Armenia," added Tabirian.