Simon Maghakyan

A native of Armenia, Simon holds a graduate degree in political science from the University of Colorado. He is also an alumnus of the International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies. Simon is Eurasia Country Specialist at Amnesty International USA, as well as founding Executive Director of the Djulfa Virtual Memorial and Museum – www.djulfa.com.

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Latest posts by Simon Maghakyan

Australian Broadcaster Wins First Indigenous Journalism Award

  16 April 2012

The winner of the first journalism award for indigenous broadcasters hosted by the World Indigenous Television Broadcasters Network (WITBN) in Norway on March 29, 2012 was National Indigenous Television from Australia. The winning video and other finalists can be viewed on the WITBN website.

Norway Hosts First Journalism Award for Indigenous Broadcasters

  20 March 2012

Norway is widely known for hosting the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize Awards. This month, the Scandinavian country is hosting the debut of another important yet largely unknown journalism award ceremony for the World Indigenous Television Broadcasters Network (WITBN) on March 29, 2012.

USA: Has NASA Discovered a Life-Friendly Planet?

  14 December 2011

NASA has announced the Kepler Space Telescope discovery of Kepler-22b, a planet within the right distance of its star for potentially having a habitable temperature. Science bloggers have reacted to the news with analysis and theories of their own.

USA: Native Americans Take Offense at Osama Nickname

  10 May 2011

For the United States government, "Geronimo EKIA" (Enemy Killed In Action) is the code for Osama Bin Laden's death. For many Native Americans, however, comparing their folk hero Geronimo to the world's number one terrorist is offensive. Geronimo was the most famous Chiricahua Apache figure who fought against Mexican and US armies to defend Apache lands.

USA: Native Cherokees Fight for Sacred Mound

  15 February 2010

Cherokee Native Americans in North Carolina are currently fighting the construction of an electrical station they say would impede the spiritual experience at Kituwah, a sacred mound that is cherished as "Mothertown".

India: Death of a Prehistoric Language

  8 February 2010

The last speaker of the ancient Bo language, Boa Senior, has died in her native Andaman Islands (part of India) in February 2010. It's a vivid confirmation of last year's report from UNESCO, warning that 2,500 languages are at risk of disappearing.

USA: Historical Truth of Thanksgiving

  30 November 2009

“To European-Americans this holiday is laced with fanciful symbolism and metaphorical memories about that great feast between Pilgrims and Indians. But the historical truth often goes untold and unheard,” writes Rusty’s blog.

USA: No More Columbus Day at Brown University

  13 April 2009

In response to protests from Native American and other students, the prestigious Brown University in the United States has changed the name of the national public holiday Columbus Day to "Fall Weekend" on its academic calendar. Bloggers are debating this modification of a holiday that honors the European explorer Christopher Columbus for “discovering” America.

Australia: Indigenous Rights Declaration Approved

  4 April 2009

Australia’s government has endorsed the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a year and a half after voting – along with Canada, New Zealand, and the United States – against the September 2007 document. Reform Wollongong City Council, a blog from Australia, writes: On Friday 3 April...

Georgia: Holy Baby Boom!

  30 March 2009

The birth rate has increased by 20 percent in ex-Soviet Georgia and the country's Orthodox Church is taking much of the credit. The miracle responsible for the much-needed baby boom in this old Christian country has been a single promise from the head of the Georgian church to personally baptize newborns. Bloggers seem impressed.

Armenia: International Women's Day action sparks virginity debate

  16 March 2009

Although couples now marry at a later age than before, some traditions have been slow to change in Christian Armenia. One custom, for example, expects women -- but not men -- to remain virgins until their wedding night. However, a recent rally to mark International Women’s Day after which red apples were buried, a symbol of the bride losing her virginity, has prompted intense discussion in the Armenian blogosphere.

USA: Native American Consultation Policy

  9 March 2009

UOB says Native Americans will now advise U.S. Department of Homeland Security on issues concerning American Indians. The policy has been created by new Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

Armenia: First Anniversary of Bloody Post-Election Clash

Thousands took to the streets of Yerevan on Sunday to remember last year’s post-election unrest in Armenia which left eight civilians and two policemen dead. With some opposition activists still behind bars, Armenia’s government is widely accused of doing little to investigate the clashes properly.

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