In Vire Normandie, a collective mobilizes for an Armenian family threatened with displacement

Claire Boisne, Robert Arstamyan and his son Davit, Amaliya Danielyan, Nathalie Coiftier and Claire Banning.
Claire Boisne (collective), Robert Arstamyan and his son Davit, Amaliya Danielyan (translator), Nathalie Coiftier (collective) and Claire Banning (collective). The Arstamyan family arrived in Vire Normandy (Calvados) in September 2021. You are now threatened with eviction. © The Voice of the Bocage

“There is an emergency,” warns Nathalie Coiftier, member of the Collective in support of the Arstamyan family, which has about fifty members. “As of April 23, 2022, they will no longer have more living spacethe situation will become extreme precarious. »

“Your asylum application was rejected twice by the prefecture. »

Nathalie Coiffier

However, they quickly integrated. The 3 children: Davit, 14; Arman, 12 years old, and Arthur, 3 years old, go to school Vire Normandy (Calvados).

“Davit integrated it Four football club and Arman, the judo club. Arman also shone at the Championships in Normandy, February 2022: He climbed the second step of the podium. And won a qualifier for the French Judo Championships.

A large number of refugees

The family is from chouchia town of 4,446 inhabitants, located in the center of the region Nagorno-Karabakh, populated by Armenians of Christian faith. In 1991, when the Soviet Union broke up, the Nagorno-Karabakh proclaims its independence.

This marks the beginning of hostilities between Armenia and Azerbaijan for control of this area. The conflict resumed between 2020 and 2021, killing 6,500 people. beaten militarily Armenia was forced to cede territories of Nagorno-Karabakh. Since the beginning of the conflict, the number of refugees has been estimated at several hundred thousand.

The family in danger

Robert Arstamyan took part in the fighting. “A lot of people died around him,” explains Amaliya Danielyan, a volunteer translator of Armenian descent.

Moved to tears, she recalls the situation described by Robert Arstamyan:

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“There are gas and power cuts over there to get the population out of the area. The historical and cultural heritage is destroyed. Churches and cemeteries are looted. »

Therefore, faced with the danger to his family, Robert Arstamyan decided to flee. By sacrificing all his savings. Why France? “It’s the country of human rights,” he replies. So much so that they fly to Paris from Yerevan, the capital of Armenia. Then the Calvados Prefecture asks them to join Vire, where they are supported by the social Reception Center for Asylum Seekers ( Cada ).

The fighting continued

Problem: The French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA) classifies Armenia among the safe countries. Armenians therefore do not have the same rights as other asylum seekers. What the collective rebels:

“Relations between Azerbaijan and Armenia have deteriorated recently and fighting resumed last month! »

In this context, the collective will fight to challenge the mayor of Vire Normandie, Marc Andreu Sabater; the deputy of Calvados, Alain Tourret; the MP for La Manche, Philippe Gosselin, member of the France-Azerbaijan Parliamentary Friendship Group.

An appointment was made with the lawyer from Caen, Maître Sarah Blache, who specifically intervenes in immigration law. “There is an urgent need to obtain the right to asylum. The right of residence in France, in Vire,” announces the collective.


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