Demanding


Therefore their main demand is the opening of borders between Turkey and Armenia which they believe would have a positive effect on both the Armenian economy and Turkish-Armenian relations. For most of our interviewees, the remaining “official” demands such as compensation and territory are rather insignificant. For some of the interviewees, however, compensation is a must, because it symbolizes the economic, social, and cultural losses of the Armenians. For them, the compensation can restore the Armenian nation’s long-lost strength.

As in the case of Armenian youth in Turkey, the most outstanding distinctive fact is that their very existence is denied from the start. In this perspective, the demand of recognition stems from a rather existential basis in Turkey. For the Armenian youth in Turkey, recognition is not only an acceptance of genocide, but also an acceptance of who they are; thus by recognition their primary goal is to establish a secure environment that they can live peacefully with others. Thus, for Armenian youth in Turkey, the demands address more to the people rather than to the government, just like it is for Armenia. As for the rest of the demands such as compensation and territory, they attribute a symbolic meaning rather than functional, therefore do not force them as their obligatory demands.