NOVEMBER 22 - «HAYRENADIROUTYUN DAY»
Our cordial congratulations to whole Armenian nation in view of the victorious day -
For the past few decades now, the 24th of April has served as one of the major dates on the calendar for the Armenian people, a day representing perhaps the most significant manifestation of united Armenian political will. In the Armenian world, this date began first as one of requiems and remembrance, gradually developing into a day of righteous indignation and demands for justice through the recognition of the Armenian Genocide. Nevertheless, the 24th of April is a day of loss, a day dedicated to acknowledging that greatest of losses.
However, as a
nation and as a community in the pursuit of justice, we need a day of victory
and reparation, a day of the establishment of justice and our rights. We have
such a day; the day which keeps the flames of victory burning is the 22nd of
November, the date of the arbitral award of US President Woodrow Wilson
deciding the frontier between Armenia and Turkey. On that day, the arbitral
award granted to the
As the arbitral
award was realised on the basis of the unqualified compromis of Turkey
and Armenia, as well as of the British Empire, France, Italy, Japan, Poland,
Portugal, Belgium, Greece, Canada, India, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand,
Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Romania, having been enforced upon signing, it is
therefore binding, inviolable and perpetual for all of the above countries and
their successor states. It is also binding, inviolable and perpetual for the
According to the basic principles of international law, codified by numerous international documents, the arbitral award is to be carried out by all parties to that document, that is, by the countries which formed part of the compromis. It is their duty without reservation, their absolute responsibility. Thus, it ought to be a pan-national issue for us, to demand from those countries on the 22nd of November each year, to carry out their responsibility as per international law, and not to do so simply as a gesture of goodwill, but as an immediate and inviolable international obligation, which has lain forgotten, and which has partly been denied.
The 22nd of November must be rendered a day of restoration of justice, of demands for national reparations and the re-establishment of our dispossessed rights. In the words of that great Armenian, Garegin Nzhdeh, Hayrenadiroutian Day – National Patrimony Day.
to the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Armenia
Mr. Edward NalbandianDownload PDF of English version
On the first of October this year, at the end of the parliamentary hearings on the pair of unfortunate Armenian-Turkish protocols, you declared the following in the course of answering the predetermined questions: “Wilson’s decision has no legal implications, as it was not ratified by the US Senate” (I would like to apologise if your wording is not reproduced exactly; the meaning, however, is accurate, I believe). It was most unfortunate that I was not in attendance at that time. I could not have known beforehand that your responses would be delayed until the end of the working day & had to leave for a prior engagement.
something good has come of this. I am now compelled to respond to your claim in
the form of an open letter. It is not worthy to leave the words of a Minister
unaddressed. You have repeated, word-for-word, the opinion expressed in
as well as Mr. Mihranian have clearly confused the chronologically close, yet
two very distinct issues – the mandate for
The Paris Peace
Conference ultimately took up the main issues of the Ottoman Empire in the
For the first –
the mandate – the Paris Peace Conference approached the
The second request
– arbitrating the frontier of
What followed in
this regard is relatively better known. Based on the compromis of San
Remo (the 26th of April, 1920), as well as that of Sèvres (the 10th of
August, 1920), US President Woodrow Wilson granted the arbitral award on the
frontiers between Armenia & Turkey on the 22nd of November, 1920, which was
to come into force in accordance with the agreement immediately
& without preconditions. Two days later, on the 24th of
November, the award was conveyed by telegraph to the Paris Peace Conference
& for the consideration of the
It is necessary to state, first of all, that any arbitral award, if it is carried out with due process, does not just have some theoretical “legal force”, but is a binding document to be carried out without reservations. Moreover, arbitral awards are “final & without appeal”. “The arbitral award is the final & binding decision by an arbitrator”.
The final & non-appealable nature of arbitral awards is codified within international law. In particular, by Article 54 of the 1899 edition & Article 81 of the 1907 edition of the Hague Convention for the Pacific Settlement of International Disputes.
It is evident from the aforementioned that arbitral awards a) are inherently binding & non-appealable decisions, & b) do not require any ratification or approval from within a state.
And so, by the arbitral award of the President of
the United States Woodrow Wilson, the frontier between
is another important issue to consider. Have the authorities & public
bodies of the
highest executive power of the
mentioned above, arbitral awards are not subject to any legislative approval or
ratification. So the Senate, which reserves the right to take up matters
relating to foreign policy according to the US Constitution, never discussed
the arbitral award deciding the Armenian-Turkish frontier. Nevertheless, in the
course of discussing other matters, the Senate of the
the 18th of January, 1927, the Senate rejected the Turkish-American treaty of
the 6th of August, 1923, for three reasons. One of the reasons was that
Let me also add that the restoration of relations
The position of public bodies
The position of public bodies
most important public bodies in the
Democratic Party of the
its 1924 programme, the Democratic Party included a separate clause of the “Fulfillment
of President Wilson’s arbitral award respecting
You have stated, that “
With the collapse of the
rasa” principle (“a clean
slate”) was put in place when the
Please accept, Minister, the assurances of my highest consideration.
Head, “Modus Vivendi” Center
2 October 2009
P.S. Minister, if you disagree with my arguments, I would like to request an invitation to debate on live television. Silence, that is, the absence of an invitation, would be perceived as a sign of agreement with my arguments.
to the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Turkey
Mr. Ahmet Davutoglu
Download PDF of English version
I read with interest the text of your speech of the 21st of October at the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. My impressions were mixed. However, I mainly felt that you wished to present what was desirable, instead of what was real.
To begin with, it
was astonishing to hear of “occupation” from the foreign minister of a
country which has itself been occupying 37% of the
While commenting on
the fifth clause of protocol on the establishment of diplomatic relations
This is a very
arbitrary conclusion indeed. The document in question does not cite the
aforementioned so-called treaties. The protocols refer only to “the relevant treaties of international law”.
That is, evidently, the treaties in question must be governed by international
law, at the very least not being in violation of it. Simultaneously, by
referring to “the relevant treaties of
international law” and not simply “international
treaties”, the protocol provides a more inclusive definition, and thus
brings in “the instruments of
international law” in general, regardless of the kind of document, as,
given the present case, we have a document known as a “protocol”.
Accordingly, a “treaty” must be understood in a way separate from the
term for the document, purely as a legal, written international agreement. [“Treaty”
means an international agreement concluded between States in written form and
governed by international law – Article 2.1(a),
is evident that “the existing border” mentioned in the protocol is not
the illegal dividing line, which came about as a result of Bolshevik-Kemalist
actions. Ex injuria non oritur jus, illegal acts cannot create law. “The existing border” implies that which exists in international
law and in accordance with international law. Moreover, there is no only one
such border between
The treaties of
Do you really
believe that two unrecognised, and consequently illegal self-proclaimed
administrations, as the Bolsheviks and Kemalists were in 1921, could, through a
bilateral treaty (of
Do you really believe that the Armenian Soviet
Socialist Republic, as well as the Georgian and
It is an indisputable fact of international law that no legal consequences are held for an occupied country by the acts of the occupiers, as “a cession of territory during occupation is not effective." There is no ambiguity in this matter.
The fact that the protocols do not make legal the situation created as a result of the Armenian Genocide and that they do not recognise any frontiers was stated outright in the address of the President of the Republic of Armenia, Serge Sargsyan, on the 10th of October 2009: “Any sort of relationship with Turkey cannot cast into doubt the reality of the dispossession and genocide of the Armenian people”, and “The issue of the current frontier between Armenia and Turkey is subject to a resolution as per prevailing international law. The protocols say nothing more than that.”
Clear and simple.
Now let us see what this “prevailing international law” is exactly, according to which “the issue of the current frontier between
In order to understand this, one must return to the not-too-distant past, during that short period of time, when the international community recognised the
When it came to the borders of the Republic of Armenia, naturally, the most important was the question of the Armenia-Turkey frontier. And so, at the San Remo session of the Paris Peace Conference, alongside other issues, this particular question was discussed during the 24th to the 27th of April, 1920, and, on the 26th of April, the US President Woodrow Wilson was officially requested to arbitrate the frontiers of Armenia. On the 17th of May, 1920, President Wilson accepted and took on the duties and authority as the arbiter of the frontier between Armenia and Turkey. I would like to especially emphasise that this was almost three months before the Treaty of Sèvres was signed (which took place on the 10th of August, 1920). Whether the Treaty of Sèvres would come to pass or not, the compromis of a legal arbiter existed, and consequently, the arbitral award deciding the border between Armenia and Turkey would take place. It is another matter that the Treaty of Sèvres consisted of an additional compromis. It is necessary to note that the validity of the compromis only requires the signatures of the authorised representatives and that no ratification is required for compromis.
Accordingly, based upon the compromis of San Remo (of the 26th of April, 1920), as well as that of Sèvres (of the 10th of August, 1920), US President Woodrow Wilson carried out his arbitral award on the borders between Armenia and Turkey on the 22nd of November, 1920, which was to be enforced thereupon and without reservations in accordance with the agreement (compromis).
days later, on the 24th of November, the award was officially
conveyed by telegraph to the Paris Peace Conference for the consideration of
It is necessary to state, first of all, that any arbitral award is a binding document to be carried out without reservations. Moreover, arbitral awards are “final and without appeal”. “The arbitral award is the final and binding decision by an arbitrator”.
The final and non-appealable nature of arbitral
awards is codified within international law. In particular, by Article 54 of
the 1899 edition and Article 81 of the 1907 edition of the Hague Convention for the Pacific Settlement of
International Disputes. And so, by the arbitral award of the President of the United States
Woodrow Wilson, the frontier between
Therefore, when the fifth clause of the protocol on the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Turkey mentions “the mutual recognition of the existing border between the two countries as defined by the relevant treaties of international law”, then that can only take into consideration the border defined by the only legal document in force to this day, the arbitral award of US President Woodrow Wilson. There is no other legal document “of international law”, as the protocol says.
is another important issue to consider here. Have the authorities and public
bodies of the
executive power of the
Arbitral awards are
not subject to any legislative approval or ratification. They are governed by
international public law. Therefore, the Senate, which reserves the right to
take up matters relating to foreign policy according to the US Constitution,
never directly discussed the arbitral award deciding the Armenian-Turkish frontier.
Nevertheless, in the course of discussing other matters, the Senate of the
the 18th of January 1927, the Senate rejected the Turkish-American
treaty of the 6th of August 1923, for three reasons. One of the
reasons was that
The most important
public bodies in the
The Democratic Party of the US (the party of current President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton) has official expressed a position on Wilson’s arbitral award on two occasions, in 1924 and in 1928.
In its 1924
programme, the Democratic Party included a separate clause of the “Fulfilment
of President Wilson’s arbitral award respecting
As opposed to the
current generation of Americans and Europeans, we know the Turks well, and we
therefore do not harbour any illusions. I believe that you, in turn, know us
well, and must therefore bear no illusions of your own. If you Turks believe
that by arm-twisting
– the Armenians and the Turks – are condemned together to find mutually
acceptable solutions. Such solutions may come in many forms, but one thing must
be clear, that they have to benefit the establishment of a stable peace for the
entire region, the development of a diverse economy, the creation of a
co-operative atmosphere, while serving as well the realisation of certain
interests of global powers and their greater inclusion in regional issues. And
so, that solution must be such that it dispels the security concerns of the
Armenian side, while providing conditions of sustained economic growth and
development for the
We are willing to co-operate, but do not take that as a sign of weakness and do not force us to raise a white flag of surrender. That will never occur.
Accept, Minister, the deepest assurances of my consideration.
Head, “Modus Vivendi” Center
Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the
23 October 2009
Center for Social Science
NGO is founded on 30 April 1999 (Certificate No 1016)
Solving the Regional problems by peaceful means through International Law.
It is the Force that bears Law ...
|... but Law bears Force.|
|Garegin Nzhdeh (1886-1955)
||Modus Vivendi (2007)|
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Last update: 04 November 2010