Rupa Huq MP commemorates the Armenian Genocide at new memorial in Ealing
Rupa Huq MP commemorates the Armenian Genocide at new memorial in Ealing

It was a chilly day but spirited event when Rupa Huq MP and local dignitaries paid tribute to Ealing’s Armenian communities at the Armenian Genocide Memorial in Ealing last Saturday. The memorial, a sculpture depicting an eternal flame, is a new installation which stands as a commemoration of the hundreds of thousands of lives lost during the first world war from the systematic persecution and execution of the Armenian People.  

Huq, alongside fellow local MPs Ruth Cadbury, James Murray, Virendra Sharma, leader of Ealing Council Peter Mason and Mayor Hitesh Tailor, joined Armenian Ambassador to the UK Varuzhan Nersesyan to pay tribute to the resilient but often persecuted community’s culture and history.   

Speaking at the event, Huq said:  

“In Ealing we have a vibrant and sizeable Armenian community and many members are hyphenated Armenians—Iranian-Armenians, Syrian-Armenians or Turkish-Armenians—underscoring that this is a country that has had pogroms, massacres and genocides for many years. The Armenian community of Ealing and Acton reminds us of how wide the Armenian diaspora is: it is scattered throughout many countries, forced out by continuous persecution, genocide and displacement.  

Ealing has long commemorated the Armenian genocide of 1915 and I call for the Government, as I have done time and time before, let’s call this as it is. Our closest ally Joe Biden of the US has…  let’s recognise 1915 as a genocide.” 

As Huq pointed out, the monument – upgraded last Autumn from the original apricot tree (national symbol) that had stood there – has already been vandalised by Turkish nationalists attempting to scratch out the word “genocide”. 

Local resident Annette Moskofian, chair of the Armenian National Committee (ANC) UK later thanked those present stating “On behalf of the Armenian Community in Ealing I would like to express our appreciation for your attendance and words of solidarity… your support is much needed in the next Labour government’s recognition of the Armenian Genocide.” 

Among the attendees were students from the Armenian Language Saturday School in Huq’s constituency and members of the Homenetmen London Armenian scouts. 

Huq has a long-standing interest in Armenia, highlighted by the considerable number of her constituents in Ealing Central and Acton of Armenian heritage. Huq says: “Although there are no up-to-date figures with the last census being back in 2021, we know that Ealing central and Acton is one of the most Armenian and Armenian-origin Parliamentary constituencies in the UK evidenced in the fact that both Ealing and Acton each boast Armenian community centres. The Armenian Summer festival in Acton is an annual highlight.” 

Huq spoke in the House of Commons at a debate on the subject only last month having previously laid a petition before it on the subject and in February 2024 visited Yerevan and Jermuk in Armenia as part of a cross-party parliamentary delegation with the Inter Parliamentary Union following attacks on the area by Azerbaijan in the Nagorno Karabach region.

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