Kim Kardashian And Her Family In Armenia
In Time for The 100th Anniversary Of
The Armenian Genocide
Keeping Up with the Kardashians stars, Kim Kardashian West and sister Khloé Kardashian made their eight-day tour to Armenia on Saturday, visiting their ancestral home while being documented for the next season of KUWTK.
The Kardashians were accompanied by Kim’s husband Kanye West, daughter North West, and cousins Kourtni and Kara.
Crowds gathered outside the luxury hotel in Republic square where Kardashians stayed. Streets in the centre of the capital were blocked and guarded by the police while fans gathered at a restaurant where Kim and her entourage lunched.
Armenian records reflect that ancestors of the Kardashian family lived in the historical town called Gyumri, a city outside the Armenian capital of Yerevan. Khloé and Kim’s father, lawyer Robert Kardashian, who passed away in 2003, was a third-generation Armenian American.
Earlier in the week, Khloé and Kim visited the Mother Armenia statue in Yerevan, a memorial commemorating the victims of the Armenian genocide. The Kardashian sisters also met with the current Armenian Prime Minister, Hovik Abrahamyan. “He expressed how proud they are that we are proud Armenians and we have not forgotten our roots!” Kim tweeted. According to a government statement the Kim and Khloe also “pledged to continue the struggle for international recognition and condemnation of the Armenian genocide”.
On April 13, 2015 super star husband Kanye West surprised his wife’s (Kim Kardashian’s) people with a FREE Live Concert in Armenia. A large crowed was gathered by the Swan Lake where Kanye performed and later jumped in the lake.
Kim Kardashian has used her celebrity since 2011 to bring awareness to the Armenian genocide.
Kardashian wrote in Times magazine: “I would like President Obama to use the word “genocide”. It’s very disappointing he hasn’t used it as President. We thought it was going to happen this year. I feel like we’re close — but we’re definitely moving in the right direction. “
Armenians are certainly keeping up with the Kardashians. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan, a historian, said: “At the beginning people were uncomfortable with the Kardashian visit; after all, this is a conservative society. But Armenia has never been discussed in the mainstream media like this before. This shows that Armenian identity is still alive.”
Here are some of the photos Kim Kardashian shared on her Instagram account with her fans:
Here’s an exclusive essay for TIME Magazine by Kim Kardashian West, reflecting on her heritage and the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide that their victims should not me forgotten.
“When we grew up, all my father did was talk about our heritage.
It was such a big part of our life: We’d eat Armenian food, we would listen to stories—my dad was really outspoken about our history. We were told that when a lot of Armenians moved, they took the “ian” off their last names in fear that they would be killed. “Whatever you girls do, never change your last name—it’s Kardashian,” he would say. He was very vocal and wanted us to never to forget where we came from.
My great-great-grandparents came from Armenia to Los Angeles in 1914, right before the genocide happened. We have no existing family left in Armenia. Had they not escaped, we wouldn’t be here. There are so many people who lost their families, and the stories of how they were killed are so heartbreaking—they should never be forgotten. The whole point of remembering the genocide is to make sure it doesn’t happen again. A million-and-a-half people were brutally massacred, and a country can just pretend like it never happened? I don’t think that’s right.
My family wanted to go back to Armenia for the longest time. My dad would have loved to go. My grandparents would have loved to go. My great-grandparents would have loved to go. None of them were able to go.
My sister Khloé, my daughter North, and my husband Kanye West finally went to Armenia this month. So many people have come to me and said, “I had no idea there was a genocide.” There aren’t that many Armenians in this business. We have this spotlight to bring attention to it, so why would we just sit back?
Now is the time to speak out, and every little bit helps. I will continue to ask the questions and fight for the genocide to be recognized for what it was.
I would like President Obama to use the word “genocide.” It’s very disappointing he hasn’t used it as President. We thought it was going to happen this year. I feel like we’re close—but we’re definitely moving in the right direction.
It’s time for Turkey to recognize it. It’s not the fault of the people who live there now; it was 100 years ago on Friday. I think if they recognize it and acknowledge it, everyone can move on. I believe in moving on and looking toward a brighter future, but you can’t move on unless you acknowledge the past. To not do so is an act of disrespect.
There’s a purple centennial pin that everyone wears to commemorate the genocide. Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan gave me his when I met him. Purple is my daughter’s favorite color, so she wants to wear it every single day. When she gets older, I will explain to her the real meaning behind it. I’m half-Armenian, but I grew up with a such a strong sense of my Armenian identity, and I want my daughter to have the same.
My great-great-grandparents were so brave to move their whole family. I’ll honor them by passing their memory down to my daughter.“
The LA Fashion Judge, Marina BerBeryan is also half Armenian and she showed her support by attending the Armenian Genocide march held in Little Armenia in Hollywood, California held on April 24, 2015. “Love you guys! Yesterday was the 2nd largest gathering in Los Angeles History!!! The march of justice was the ultimate triumph -BRAVO!! LAPD estimated 130,000 Armenians marched 6 miles through the heart of Hollywood to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. We stand ALL UNITED and globally demand for Turkey to take the responsibility to recognize the #ArmenianGenocide, the deliberately planned extermination of 1.5 million Armenians AND demand for President Barack Obama who is yet to use officially to recognize the Armenian genocide as promised!!!” posted Marina on her Facebook Page.