By Karine Kalantarian
Armenian leaders extended on Wednesday their sympathy to the government and people of the United States as memorial services in Yerevan marked the first anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks in New York and Washington.
President Robert Kocharian and other top officials were among hundreds of dignitaries attending a solemn performance of Mozart’s Requiem staged by Armenia’s leading symphonic orchestra and choir. Catholicos Garegin II said a prayer for more than 3,000 victims of the worst act of terror in the world’s history.
Late on Tuesday, Garegin led a special service at the main cathedral of the Armenian Apostolic Church in Echmiadzin dedicated to the attack anniversary.
The Requiem was also performed at Yerevan’s Saint Gregory cathedral on Wednesday morning. And in the Armenian parliament, deputies started the day with a minute of silence in memory of the dead.
“We again strongly condemn terrorism, and repeat that terrorist activities, whatever their nature and their purpose, strike and undermine the very purpose for which they strive,” Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian said in a statement to the media.
“The international community stood in support of the US in order to combat this evil called terrorism which has become an international threat and has taken root in different corners of the world. Armenia, too, from the first day, joined the struggle against international terrorism, and brought its modest input to those efforts,” Oskanian said.
That input was again mentioned by U.S. Ambassador to Armenia John Ordway as he addressed the memorial concert at the American University of Armenia.