Hundreds gather in SF after Biden recognizes Armenian genocide

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — In the Bay Area, the Armenian community gathered on Mount Davidson in San Francisco as it has every year for 25 years.

The crowd membered the lives lost in the mass killings.

And this year’s event was even more special coming on the heels of President Biden acknowledging the genocide.

At the base of the cross, atop Mount Davidson in San Francisco, descendants of survivors honored and remembered the one-and-a-half million Armenians killed by the Ottoman Empire 106 years ago.

“Everyone has a personal connection,” Haig Baghdassarian said. “Many of the people here have grandparents or great-grandparents who were orphaned.”

This year, San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara counties all passed resolutions marking this day as Armenian Genocide Commemoration Day.

“What happened then was wrong, and we have to recommit ourselves to making sure that things like that never happen again,” Mayor London Breed said.

Yet the Armenian community continues to be the target of violence.

Last year in San Francisco, the fbi investigated three hate crimes against armenians.

“Last August, I stood alongside many of you against the acts of vandalism at the KVZ Armenian School in San Francisco,” Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis said.

KRON4’s Ella Sogomonian served as the memorial’s mistress of ceremonies.

“We reflect on the challenges that our people have faced and better yet continue to overcome,” Sogomonian said.

One challenge conquered happened hours before the commemoration.

When President Biden became the first U.S. president to officially acknowledge the atrocities of 1915 as a genocide.

“President Joseph Biden has reclaimed the United States’ position as a champion of human rights on the planet earth,” San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin said.

A major step Armenians hope other world leaders will adopt moving forward.

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