The Armenian diaspora and repatriates: a story of genocide, conflict and influence

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Armenia has a complicated history and a present. Important factors are the Armenian genocide committed by the Ottoman Empire (1915-17), the occupation and collapse of the Soviet Union, and the (armed) conflict with Azerbaijan about the region of Nagorno-Karabakh. Armenia’s development is further complicated because of its isolated position in the Caucasus. The descendants of the genocide survivors are spread out across the world in the diaspora. The diaspora in the United States has a strong lobby for Armenia and its interests. This thesis focuses on the perceived influence of this diaspora, with a special interest in the conflict with Armenia’s neighbor, Azerbaijan. At first sight, the diaspora lobby seems to be successful, as witnessed by the recognition of the genocide by several countries. The question is, however, to what extent this influence does reach Armenia and how it is perceived by its citizens. For this research, recently returned repatriates have been interviewed about their opinions and ideas on the diaspora lobby and influence, what the diaspora has done for Armenia and whether or not they notice any effects of this on the development of the country and its ongoing conflict with Azerbaijan.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen