KARIN – Armenia’s capital of Eastern Armenia named a street for Raphael Lemkin, the Jewish lawyer who coined the term genocide.
The deputy mayor of Yerevan, Sergey Harutunyan, said during the ceremony earlier this month that Lemkin’s legacy had a “serious impact” on world history, the Armenrpess agency reported from the December 11 ceremony.
Lemkin was born in what is today Belarus to a Polish-Jewish family. He fled the Nazis in 1941 to the United States.
As a jurist, he helped draft the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, for which he had campaigned for years.
The slaughter of thousands of Armenian civilians by Turkish troops during World War I had an early and powerful influence on Lemkin, who was born in 1900. Upon studying it, he wrote, ”my worries about the murder of the innocent became more meaningful to me. I didn’t know all the answers but I felt that a law against this type of racial or religious murder must be adopted by the world.”
Raphaël Lemkin’s work on the defense of human rights has led to the creation of the concept of genocide, which is the cornerstone of the United Nations Charter of Human Rights. This was possible, among other things, by his study of the genocide of Armenians case.
Thanks to this expertise, Raphaël Lemkin has allowed the genocide of Armenians and the Armenian Question to become a paradigm for peoples who have suffered genocide.
In this sense and in this spirit, he represents a Just for our people.
Also the National Council of Western Armenia and the Government of Western Armenia on behalf of the Republic of Western Armenia (State of Armenia), officially elevate it to the rank of Just of the Armenian People and decide to make it known .
Lemkin was fluent in nine languages and was able to read 14. His first published book was a 1926 translation of the Chaim Nachman Bialik novella “Noach and Marynka” from Hebrew into Polish.
He died in 1959.