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Armenian architects, who by mediation of Armenia’s national committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites were in Turkey to watch reconstruction works of Surp Khach church of Akhtamar Island, shared with their impressions at a press conference on 1 October. Architect Ashot Hovsepian said that they failed to meet the author of the church’s layout, a Turkish architect. The latter did not come to the meeting for uncertain reasons. The layout fitting required criteria in general, still has a number of inadequacies that can be corrected before the end of the reconstruction. “Those deficiencies are perhaps not a deterioration but the layout would be more perfect if they were not there. We told 3 Turkish architects working there about our observations asking to correct visible deficiencies”, he said. The Turks turned down Armenian specialists’ offer to mix cement with lime batch. The Armenian architects think that the quality of the Turks’ work is not satisfying but the overall impression is not despairing. Gagik Gyurjian, minister of culture of Armenia, said that Armenian and Turkish specialists will make visits in near future. The Turk architects will have a chance to study Armenian architecture scrupulously. Van-born academician Varazdat Harutyunian expressed wish to celebrate his 97th anniversary in Van, hoping that Turkey will open borders and improve relations with Armenia before his birthday. By Ruzan Poghosian

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