50 Travel Tips About Armenia

Armenia isn’t on many people’s list of countries to visit. However, if you are considering visiting Armenia soon, you will probably have a few problems finding correct and reliable information. Why? There aren’t many people traveling to Armenia and even less writing about it. That’s why after visiting Armenia we built this list!

50 Travel Tips About Armenia | Armenia And The Locals

#1 Armenia isn’t a “tourist ready” country, but that’s probably just another thing that makes it even more interesting! This doesn’t mean that tourists aren’t welcome since we were always pleasantly received in Armenia. However, the country still lacks many infrastructures to receive big amounts of tourists.

Things you want to know before traveling to Armenia

#2 Barely anyone speaks English, only Russian and Armenian. We believe it’s the least English-speaking country we have been to… Communication can be very difficult, though it’s manageable.

#3 Armenia is a very dry country, at least in the Summer. Yellow is the prevailing color and makes it quite scenic 🙂 There’s something about it that’s soothing…

traveling in Armenia
Karahunj Observatory

#4 It’s very mountainous or else wouldn’t be a Caucasus country… The mountains aren’t as high as its neighboring Georgia but the whole country is marked by mountains, gorges, and valleys.

#5 There are more Armenians outside Armenia than in the country! In fact, there are almost 3 times more Armenians outside Armenia (8M) than living in Armenia (3M)! This happened due to the Armenian Diaspora.

Armenia and the locals

#6 During WWI the Ottoman Government (nowadays Turkey) killed 1-1.5 M Armenians in what it’s called the Armenian Genocide or Armenian Holocaust. Until today Turkey does not recognize what happened as a Genocide.

#7 Armenia is considered the first Christian country! Christianity was implemented as the state religion in 301 A.D. Though it was introduced in Armenia even earlier, during the 1st century by Christ’s disciples Bartholomew and Thaddeus. They are known as the “Illuminators of the Armenian world”. Even today Armenia is still a very conservative and religious country, 95 % of the population is Armenian Apostolic.

Armenia travel - Mount Ararat

#8 Armenia (and Georgia) connects Europe and Asia. For centuries was a center of trade between continents and the epicenter of many wars! It has been attacked and invaded by the Greeks, Mongols, Persians, Turks, Russians, etc…

#9 However, today Armenia is a geopolitical hotspot! It has no access to the ocean and has a conflict with many of their neighboring countries. It has no relation with Turkey and Azerbaijan. Iran to the south mostly supports their fellow Islamic countries. This leaves only Georgia,  who wasn’t too happy with their support to Russia during the recent war…

How to see Mount Ararat - Armenia travel guide
In Armenia, you get some astonishing views

#10 All this made Armenia’s economic struggle and made Armenia’s transition to a market economy more difficult. Though, Armenia is still a very poor country!

#11 However, don’t feel discouraged Armenia is a stable and safe country. Moreover, it feels safe… As a tourist, I always felt relaxed and comfortable, almost as in Georgia or Western Europe.

Top atractions of Erevan Armenia
The famous cascade in Yerevan

 

Travel In Armenia And The Tourists

#12 Armenia is one of the least touristy countries in Europe. Out of the few tourists they host, even fewer are western backpackers… We only saw a handful of them.

Armenia has so many cool things to do and see, yet has so few visitors…

#13 Even in the peak season, in the biggest tourist attractions, we only saw a few tourists and no queues. It was great not being overwhelmed by people everywhere we went

What to visit in Armenia

#14 If you are planning an overland trip be aware that Armenia borders are closed with both Turkey and Azerbaijan. If you want to go to any of these countries your best option is to go through Georgia.

#15 While traveling through Armenia, one thing will catch your eyes… Half the country seems to have been abandoned to their own fate… There are way too many half-deserted towns with buildings falling apart.

Travel in Armenia and the tourists

#16 Yerevan is the exception, the center is much more developed than the rest of the country. It’s known as the pink city because of the color of the stones of the beautiful old and new buildings. Yerevan is a buzzing city and very pleasant to walk around both during the day and at night!

#17 If we had to choose the best travel attraction of Armenia, that would be the Tatev monastery and the Wings of Tatev aerial roadway! The Tatev monastery is amazing and situated in an incredibly scenic mountain range, which you can appreciate from the Wings of Tatev.

Visit Tatev Armenia - Travel tips
The gorgeous Tatev Monastery

 

#18 Mount Ararat is a very important part of Armenian National identity, however, it’s nowadays part of Turkish territory! Though you can see it from Armenia and it’s an incredible view that allows some amazing pictures particularly from Khor Virap! Unfortunately, when we were closer to it, there was a strong fog ruining the pictures

Armenia travel tips
Khor Virap, with Mount Ararat behind – unfortunately it was a bit foggy

#19 Sevan Lake is the biggest lake in Armenia and occupies 5% of the territory! We read how beautiful it was and that it’s a beach destination within Armenia… Well, the lake is impressive and being 1900-meters high makes it rather unique, however, most of the surrounding felt abandoned! it definitely wasn’t a place where we wanted to beach…

Visit lake Sevan Armenia - Travel Armenia
Sevan Lake

#20 Moreover, the town of Sevan itself was probably the worst place we have been in Armenia! Felt completely abandoned and with nothing to do… I would suggest visiting the lake as a stopover on a road trip, but nothing more!

#21 Armenia is the place to go if you want to see unique monasteries in a beautiful setting, usually hidden away in the Mountains. The most interesting we visited were Noravank, Tatev, and Geghard. Khor Virap isn’t that impressive by itself, but the view of Ararat is incredible! We also went to Etchmiadzin, which is supposedly the first cathedral ever built (between 301-303)!

Travel to Armenia
Just one example of the many Armenian Monasteries

 

Food And Drinks In Armenia

#22 Armenian food is pretty cheap, even in restaurants. With 5-10 Euros one couple can have a very good meal at a nice restaurant.

What to eat in Armenia

#23 However, it isn’t easy to find quick meals or fast food. Definitely, the country isn’t prepared for travelers… We ended up going to supermarkets and buying supplies to being able to eat “on the road”.

#24 Lavash is the staple bread in Armenia. When you ask for bread, usually you get Lavash. It’s a soft, thin flatbread. “Lavash, the preparation, meaning, and appearance of traditional bread as an expression of culture in Armenia” was inscribed in the UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

#25 The best things we tried in Armenia were Zhingyalov hats and Dolma. Zhingyalov hats are flatbread stuffed with finely diced herbs and green vegetables. Dolma is a dish of minced meat wrapped in grape leaves.

Traditional Armenian food

#26 Be careful when you ask for a Lemonade! It may not be what you expect… We learned that, in Armenia, a Lemonade is Soda, and it doesn’t have to be a Lemon Soda! You can easily have a pear or Tarragon (Yeap…) Lemonade! 🙂

#27 Fruit (fresh and dried) is very good in Armenia, particularly peaches and figs! You will also see lots of melons and watermelons…  Enjoy them, it’s a great way to eat some healthy food during the trips!

Where to eat in Armenia
We love buying fruit and veggies from street vendors – Armenia was no exception

Money And Expenses In Armenia

#28 Overall Armenia is a very cheap country to travel in! Food, accommodation, fuel, and tickets to attractions are all very inexpensive. Overall, in 5 days we only spent 190 Euros, which means less than 20 Euros per person per day. This doesn’t include the car rental!

#29 You can withdraw money from almost any ATM with your foreign card, without extra fees! It’s similar to Georgia and very different (better!) from SE Asia! Note: We are talking about the local ATM fees, not the fees charged by your bank… those depend only on your bank!

Travel to Erevan Armenia - Travel tips

#30 The problem is that in most places it can be difficult to find ATMs! I would advise you to take a few extra Eur/USD just in case you need an alternative… The exception is Yerevan, where there’s ATM everywhere like you would expect in a big capital city.

#31 Accommodation is also very cheap! It’s fairly easy to find a private double room in a nice guesthouse under 20 Euros. Most of the times we ended up paying about 15 Euros per night.

breakfast in Armenia
breakfast in Armenia

#32 Expect to pay an added service fee of 10% in every restaurant. That information is usually on the menu. Besides, even with this small added tax, meals are very cheap in Armenian restaurants.

#33 Cash is King in Armenia. Many places only accept cash, even some that have Visa’s and Mastercard’s signs (no internet, no service or any other problem).

Most supermarkets and big restaurants/hotels are exceptions. Almost every guest house will have to be paid in cash and you can’t even pay with a card when booking.

How To Travel In Armenia

 

#34 Roads in Armenia are terrible, much worse than in Georgia. They are full of potholes, even some of the main roads that connect the country. Also, be aware that just because a road is considered a highway or a main road doesn’t mean that is any good, or even paved… You may need to drive gravel in places you won’t expect it!

#35 Therefore, you cannot blindly trust Google Maps (or maps me) expected time or you’ll be in for a bad time! In our experience, add 30 – 50% to the ETA to be safe…

 Roads in Armenia -
Roads in Armenia are a hassle…

#36 However, you don’t have to drive a 4 x 4 / SUV! It will make your journey more pleasant and allow you to go to more extreme places, but most of the usual destinations can be reached with a normal car. We did it with a small Toyota and it was OK.

#37 If the roads terrible, drivers are even worse… mostly because they are impatient and will overtake you in the craziest places. We think they are more reckless than actually aggressive. Anyway, it can be dangerous and if you are driving you should be aware of it. Our experience driving in Angola was very, very useful 🙂

Transportation in Armenia - how to travel in Armenia
Out of nowhere, the road becomes like this…

#38 Fuel is very cheap at half the price of western Europe countries, which is great for road trippers!

#39 In Armenia you can (or may really need to) fill up your car in these pumps… how cool is that? 🙂

Is Armenia Safe

#40 Armenia is part of the silk road and one of its most famous passes was the Selim pass (now called Orbelian’s pass). The scenery is amazing and the road is actually good and enjoyable to drive in. Selim pass goes as high as 2410 meters!

#41 If you are planning to drive in Armenia please note that there are way too many speed cameras on the main roads! In almost every small town you’ll see one, or several! We didn’t get any ticket, however, be careful because they usually enforce the speed limit.

Best Things to do in Armenia
Beautiful open Road in Armenia…

#42 If you are planning to bring a car from Georgia to Armenia you will need a cross-border authorization to cross the border to Armenia. It’s a document from the car rental authorizing you to take the car to Armenia in Georgian and translated to Armenian! It will cost at least 50 USD and you’ll probably need to request it 1 or 2 days in advance.

#43 Additionally you will also need to buy car insurance in Armenia, but you’ll need to buy it in Armenia. Right after crossing the border you’ll find many places selling insurance. Just stop and buy it. It’ll probably cost 10-15 USD.

Other Travel Information About Armenia

#44 In Armenia you’ll find free WIFI everywhere, restaurants, bars, hotels, guesthouses, and even some tourist attractions! However, if you want you can also easily buy a sim card close to the borders. We didn’t buy and didn’t miss it!

#45 Armenia uses the power sockets and plugs of type C and F, with a standard voltage of 230 V and a frequency of 50 Hz. Type C plug is usually called the Euro socket as it’s used in almost every country in Continental Europe. If you need to buy an adapter, we recommend this one.

#46 Do you need a visa to enter Armenia? Probably not. The citizens of many countries are exempted from visa: the US, most EU, the UK, Australia, etc.. Curiously, not Canada… Both Canadians and Indians need a visa on arrival. Nevertheless, have a look here for the lists of countries that exempted countries, visa on arrival, and visa requests.

#47 If you can buy products on the side of the road. This way you will get great products at very reasonable prices and it will directly help the local economy! Fruits, nuts, honey, and wine are some of the great things you can buy…

Armenia travel information
Another street vendor – this time it was honey

#48 Be aware that the working day starts very late… There’s nothing open before 9:00… However, at night many things come to live, particularly in Yerevan.

#49 Crossing borders between Georgia and Armenia is perfectly easy and fairly quick. One time took us 30 minutes, the other for almost 2 hours. But most importantly it was peaceful and without any “problems” from the Police. We were particularly worried about the Brava Border (because it’s very small) but it was very simple and without any trouble!

#50 If you want to travel to a country that it’s still off the radar of tourism, visiting Armenia is probably one of your best options! It’s safe, cheap, relaxed, fairly easy to travel. It has many interesting destinations and unique culture and history!

Things you need to knwo about Armenia
Garni Temple, close to Yerevan

 

Take My Heart

This is a very special piece with piano and Duduk instrument ( The Armenian duduk is one of the oldest music instruments in the history of mankind.)

 

The lyrics of this instrumental ” Take my Heart” is following:

“I wish you were a flower in my garden. I wish you were a bird flying over my garden. I wish you were with me, my love. Stay with me, don’t cause me too much pain. You may take my heart away if you wish, only please don’t leave me. Stay with me and I will do anything for you.”

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Arman Demerjian – duduk, lead vocals
Mihran Kalaydjian- Piano
Aram Kasabian – Lead Guitar
Hratch Panossian – Bass
Samer Khoury – Violin
Tony Amer – Saxophone
Haim Cohen – KeyBoard
Albert Panikian – Trumpet
Nicole Del Sol – Percussion
Dana Debos – Trombone
Roman Calote – accordion

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The duduk translates the pain and sorrow of the Armenian people and all that we went through…hearing the duduk sends shivers down my spine and through my soul, I think of my ancestors who perished during the Armenian Genocide and our lost lands…especially with “My Home”, this piece is a memorial to the Armenian Genocide, think of the Armenian families being massacred and forced from their homes onto the death marches and outright massacre.

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I beg of you

I beg of you not to fear
If people call those ambitious, ambitious simply, and not humble;
Those that are rascals, rascals simply, and not noble;
Those that are distant, distant simply, and not present.

I beg of you don’t ever fear
A frank word that is spoken;
A frank word never kills a person,
It only makes a closed wound open.

If you are a child and you are hungry,
Never fear to cry loudly;
Since if a child never cries loudly,
No one will give it breast feeding.

Never fear to scrub a rusty cup,
Never fear, it will not rotten.
Never fear to write the truth about that which is false,
For in so doing you will not undo that which is false.

I beg of you to do some maths just for a while,
But on condition not to add up the just to be unjust,
But that you divide the unjust with the just;
Not to add up sympathy to sorrow,
But that you divide sympathy with sorrow.

Don’t ever boast around by the question,
But that you be proud with the solution,
With correct open brackets,
The remainder and also the quotient.

I beg of you to be also a little aware of the psycho,
So that if a child with his sad song is mourning his parent’s death,
I beg of you don’t ever stop him simply because his song is not good enough.
I beg of you never to bother me and make me involved
In such questions and ones alike.

Will Obama Hide Behind Erdogan’s Hypocrisy?

By Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA

Marketing/Media Writer, Strategist and Consultant

It’s that time of the year again when Armenians across the world—but especially in the United States—await the annual White House statement on the Armenian Genocide, which, since 1981, has never actually used the word “Genocide.”

This will be President Obama’s sixth such statement, the last five of which clearly veered from his campaign promise to recognize the Armenian Genocide and used euphemisms to characterize what actually happened and played into the an almost century-long campaign by Turkey to deny the events of 1915. Essentially, the president who campaigned for “change” himself became complicit in the crime of Genocide by unabashedly denying it as an apologist for Turkey.

This year, however, two recent statements make us wonder whether Obama’s April 24 statement will be different—different bad or different good?

Earlier this week, US Ambassador to Armenia John Heffern said that the White House was planning to issue a statement that would signal a change in US policy regarding the Armenian Genocide. He did immediately add that he was unsure whether the word Genocide would be used or not, signaling that whatever the vernacular not much change was coming down the pipeline.

Then on Wednesday, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, issued a verbose and absurd statement, which in a nutshell was adeptly characterized by the ANCA as “repackaging denial.” Using the tried and true “shared suffering” argument articulated by Turkish officials for decades, Erdogan offered condolences to the descendents of Genocide survivors—almost a century too late.

In 2009, Obama chose Turkey as the destination of his first official visit and during public appearances urged the government and citizens of Turkey to come to terms with their past. Then in a defeatist move, the Obama administration took to pushing the State Department-crafted Turkey-Armenia protocols, which was inherited from the Bush Administration, but nevertheless was embraced by the then Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Did Heffern preview a “change” in US policy based on his knowledge that Erdogan was about to issue an announcement? Does the Obama Administration view Erdogan’s feeble attempt at, once again, rewriting history as a sign that Turkey is heeding his call and coming to terms with its past?

One thing is clear: If any mention of Erdogan’s statement finds its way into Obama’s April 24 statement, then it cements the reality the US is unable to advocate for justice and human rights around the globe and is a victim of Turkey’s imposed gag rule on the Genocide, further perpetuating US’s complicity in the crime.

Will Obama hide behind Erdogan’s/Turkey’s hypocrisy? As Americans we hope that he will NOT!

 

 

Romanticizing the future of the Syrian Armenians

By Mihran Kalaydjian

Romanticizing the future of the Syrian Armenians

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During these hot summer days that the US media calls the “silly season,” the Turkish media covers the situation of the Armenian diaspora in Syria indifferently.

Oddly enough in Syria, where 60,000 Armenians live, not a single Armenian media organization has appointed a permanent representative or correspondent. Inexplicably, none of the Armenian journalists who wrote about the situation of the Armenian diaspora in Syria have ever set foot in Syria. The articles from Armenian journalists on the situation of the Armenian diaspora in Syria are based on stories told by Syrian Armenians coming from Aleppo and Damascus and arriving at Armenia’s Zvartnots airport or the other Syrian Armenians that they randomly met while drinking tea at cafes.

In fact, most Syrian Armenians that Armenian journalists interviewed at the airport already hold Armenian citizenship. In other words, they are Armenian citizens who went to Syria in order to work or marry a Syrian citizen. One can easily understand this by hearing their Armenian accents, but no one cares about this. The Syrian Armenians reporters interview at cafes, just say: “My uncle said they have a comfortable life there,” or “My aunt said she just came from the market and there were no clashes there.” In addition to this, many journalists wrote news stories using the guise of a leader of the Armenian community in Syria who wished to remain anonymous in order to make their articles more interesting or convey their own thoughts to the Armenian government.

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The information pollution and countless Arab world experts

On Armenian television channels a new “Arab world expert” is presented almost every day. We don’t know if these people were always there and waited for this event to make assessments during their professional lives, but they do their best to make the issue more incomprehensible by using a unique terminology.

Considering the situation of the Armenian media, the attitude of the Armenian Ministry for the Diaspora seems much more serious. After a long silence, the ministry has made a detailed announcement and stated it will try to help people as much as possible. However, the ministry has undermined its own creditability by announcing they would have difficulty hosting refugees if hundreds of thousands Syrian Armenians immigrate to Armenia after giving the number of Armenian living in Syria as 60,000.

Since the Armenian media suffers from the ministry’s mistakes, the issue of Syrian Armenians is placed on the top of the list of the government’s fatal errors. According to anti-government media organizations in Armenia, the government’s attitude both creates a roadblock to Armenia’s diaspora policies and highlights Russia’s influence over Armenia. They claimed that Armenia implements the strategy that Russia imposes on it even when their goals are in question.

Briefly, information pollution dominates the Armenian media. According to the Armenian media, the Turkish media unintentionally misleads the people. The information pollution in the Armenian media leads to the spread of false information and distorted analysis in the world, especially when it comes to Turkey.

Mass immigration and other myths

The Armenian news report on a possible mass immigration of the Syrian Armenians to Armenia immediately became the subject of serious analysis in the Turkish media. Here are some of the creative, groundless claims covered by both the Armenian and Turkish media:
Thousands of Syrian Armenians are in line to settle in Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh — Azerbaijani territory controlled by ethnic Armenian separatists with the support of the Republic of Armenia — but the Armenian government does not support this. However, the Armenian government would exert efforts to attract the Armenian capital in Syria to Armenia.
Syrian Armenians armed themselves and are ready to join the clash. The Armenian communities in Kesap repelled the opposition forces even before government forces arrived.
The Armenian government is making serious arrangements in universities and primary schools to support Syrian Armenian children and university students. It is offering a discount to Syrian Armenians on flights.
Russia uses Syrian Armenians not only to influence Armenia but also to exert pressure on Georgia. If there is a mass emigration from Syria, Russia wants to make sure that they are settled in Georgia’s Javakhk region — a region where a large number of Armenians already live.
Turkey is doing its best to evacuate the Armenians from the Syria in order to weaken the Armenian diaspora.
If we want to give fair and reasonable answers to these claims, we have to accept the reality is quite different than what is presented in the news.
First of all, the Armenian community in Syria is showing no intentions of migrating to Armenia en masse. Beginning in the 1980s, the members of the Armenian community in Syria have migrated to several countries, particularly to the US and Canada, by using Armenian capital that is planned to be transferred to Armenia. In other words, Armenians whose financial status was good enough have not chosen Armenia as the country they will live in.
In fact, some middle-class Syrian Armenians have applied for Armenian citizenship. According to the data provided by the Armenian Ministry for the Diaspora, 3,300 Syrian Armenians have obtained Armenian citizenship. However, that does not mean all these 3,300 Syrian Armenians will reside in Armenia. Until now, only 60 Syrian citizens have wanted help from Armenia and migrated there.
The Syrian Armenians, who are both Syrian and Armenian citizens, are middle-class Armenians either running businesses in Armenia or holding an American or European country’s citizenship.
Like many of the Armenian diaspora, Syrian Armenians are apolitical and deem themselves lucky if the turnover of their companies are good. The reasons why the Armenian groups have acted in favor of Bashar al-Assad’s regime so far is due to Islamophobia triggered by the Muslim Brotherhood (MB)’s attacks targeting Syrian Armenians in the past and the pro-status quo mentality of Armenian diaspora.
As is the case in Turkey, the uncertainties of a new regime concerning the rights of minorities and their loyalty to the secular regime force Armenians to protect the current situation at the expense of undermining democracy and human rights. Of course, they provide passive support. Thus, it is perfectly safe to argue that even imagining that Syrian Armenians have armed themselves and they are ready to join the clash is impossible. The only thing they would do is have some armed watchmen in the regions with a sizable Armenian population as a precaution against possible attacks.

The aid sent by the Armenian government to Syrian Armenians and arrangements they reportedly have made are over-exaggerated. They would not change their university system. Since the Soviet era, Armenian universities allocate quotas for students of the Armenian diaspora. The only change is a 20 percent reduction of school fees for Syrian Armenian students. For a country that others claim has a serious diaspora policy, asking students who have left their countries and come to Armenia for higher education to pay more tuition fees would be a big contradiction. When we turn to claims concerning the schools, this issue is only a student exchange program that aims to promote teaming Armenian children from Armenia with children from the diaspora. The program lasts only 2 weeks.

The diaspora policy that Armenia cannot develop

Although both the Armenian government and the Armenian Ministry for the Diaspora are trying their best, they neither distribute free flight tickets nor beg diaspora Armenians to migrate to Armenia. Armenian Diaspora Minister Hranuş Hakopyan has underlined that the Armenian community should continue to stay in Syria and maintain their existence there.

The Armenian government has moved the Armenian Embassy in Aleppo to another district with a considerable Armenian population and allows the embassy to grant citizenship to Syrian Armenians who previously applied.

In addition to this, Syrian Armenians are now able to obtain a sticker visa at the border gates. When we consider that for close to 20 years, Armenia has given Turkish citizens — both Turks and Armenians — a sticker-type visa at border gates, this is not a big favor.

Given the fact that Armenia has very serious social security and infrastructural problems, the Armenian government’s decision to provide houses and job opportunities to Syrian Armenians will cause serious unease within the country. In the end, whether the Armenian government accepts it or not, they have two serious problems: easing migration and the economy’s recovery. Thus, they can only help the Syrian refugees in a reasonable way.

The institution that should be concerned about the future of the Armenian diaspora in Syria and is worth studying is the Armenian Ministry for the Diaspora. Although the ministry does not accept that it makes mistakes on this issue, they underlined that they will accelerate their efforts. Stressing that the subjects of these stories are human beings, the ministry warned the media to avoid practicing false journalism. Trying to analyze the developments in Syria and their impact on Armenia, while including discourses on the Armenian diaspora in Russia, Georgia and Turkey, only produces conspiracy theories.

Now, the most ridiculous impact of the pollution of information concerning developments in Syria is leaving its mark on Turkish-Armenian relationships. The unfounded claim that Armenia would resettle Syrian Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh is spreading. And this reminds me of the horrifying headlines run by the Turkish media in response to Turkey’s decision to allow religious ceremonies at Van’s Akdamar Church.

Such illusions are useless. Just like diaspora Armenians in New York, Paris or Buenos Aires, who did not settle in Van after the opening of Akdamar Church, the diaspora Armenians in Aleppo and Damascus do not want to live in Nagorno-Karabakh. They visit Nagorno-Karabakh as tourists and express admiration but they return to Syria.

A realistic perspective would upset those who adopt romantic-nationalist perspectives on the issue but would relieve the Turkish and Azerbaijani people. These ridiculous scenarios are far from realistic and do nothing for the frozen bilateral relations.