The only solution to patriarch election-related problem is Ateshian’s resignation – says Archbishop Garegin Bekchian
YEREVAN, MARCH 16, ARMENPRESS. Archbishop Garegin Bekchian, who was elected as locum tenens of the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul, says the only solution in connection with the issue of patriarchal elections is the resignation of patriarchal Vicar Archbishop Aram Ateshian, Agos reports.
After the election results were released on March 15, Ateshian presented a document sent by Istanbul Governor’s Office where the local authorities announced the non-recognition of the locum tenens election results, as well as the impossibility to hold patriarchal elections at this stage. In response to this note, the group led by Aram Ateshian and Sahak Mashalian plans to visit Istanbul Governor’s Office.
“I will not be in the group during the visit. During the meeting the group members will present the logic of locum tenens election, and this will be followed by a statement. All this will happen within several days. I will be here during this period”, Bekchian said.
He stated that they respect any note sent from the state, that’s why they will visit the Governor’s Office in order to clarify the content of the statement. “If Ateshian was aware of this note, he must have presented it before the meeting. And we would make a decision in accordance with it, however, what was going to happen, happened. The only solution of this issue is Aram Ateshian’s resignation”, Garegin Bekchian said.
Istanbul Governor’s Office has interfered in the patriarchal election. In a notice sent to the patriarchate by deputy governor, it is stated that it is “legally” impossible to start the process of the elections of locum tenens.
The notice was handed out by Archbishop Ateşhian who lost the election.
The Clerical Assembly kicked off at 15:00, March 15 to elect the locum tenens, but the writ of the governor’s office was sent to the Patriarchy at 13:47.
Aram Ateshian promulgated the writ only after it became known that he has lost the election.
Primate of the Armenian Diocese of Germany Archbishop Garegin Bekchyan has been elected locum tenens of the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul.