Representatives of the Assyrian community of Armenia today gathered near the National Assembly and held a protest against inclusion of the Assyrian Dmitrov village in the process of enlargement of communities.
The Assyrians call on the authorities to revisit the bill and not turn the 200-year-old village into a separate community. According to the residents of the village, this may put preservation of the language and culture of the villagers at risk.
It should be mentioned that Armenia's laws stipulate that the villages with a compact population of representatives of national minorities must not be affected by the enlargement of communities. Nevertheless, the authorities want to merge the village with Artashat community.
Head of Dimitrov village Irina Sahradova-Gasparyan says she and the residents had been promised that the village "wouldn't be enlarged", but in his recent speech in parliament, Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure Gnel Sanosyan said "the Assyrians make up only 14% in the village".
"The village school has only one Assyrian teacher. If Dimitrov becomes one of the 40 villages of Artashat community, who will think about the Assyrians?" Sahradova-Gasparyan said, adding that out of the 7 members of the village's council of elders, only one member is Assyrian.