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 Wednesday, December 11 2019 13:38
Marianna Mkrtchyan

85th Patriarch of Constantinople Diocese of AAC elected in Turkey

85th Patriarch of Constantinople Diocese of AAC elected in Turkey

ArmInfo.The chairman of the religious assembly, Archbishop Aram Ateshyan, congratulated Bishop Sahak Mashalyan on his election as the 85th head of the  Diocese of Constantinople of the Armenian Apostolic Church (AAC).   Ateshyan on his Facebook page wished Mashalyan success in his new  mission. At the same time, he expressed hope that these elections  will ensure unity and fraternity between the Armenian community of  Constantinople and the Church.

To note, early in the morning in the Constantinople diocese of the  AAC, the elections of the 85th patriarch were held. 103 secular and  17 clerical delegates took part in the elections. Sahak Mashalyan and  Aram Ateshyan fought for the place of the patriarch. As a result of  the vote, Sahak Mashalyan was elected patriarch.

It should be added that in the first round of elections held on  December 8, Mashalyan also enlisted the support of the majority of  voters who took part in the electoral process. Then only 13,704  members of the Armenian community took part in the elections, which  is about 30% of voters with the right to vote. Many did not come to  the polls, considering the elections to be unfair, since the election  qualification established by the Turkish state limited the  possibility of nominating a number of clergymen as candidates.

It should be noted that since 1998, Mesrop Mutafyan held the position  of the First Hierarch of the AAC in Constantinople. However, after  the operations and several assassination attempts carried out by  members of the Ergenekon terrorist organization, the 53-year-old  Patriarch's health worsened, and then the doctors diagnosed him with  incurable amnesia, and later he fell into a coma. From 2004 to March  8, 2019 (on this day Mutafyan passed away), the Turkish leadership  did not give permission to the Armenian community (the head of the  national community according to Turkish laws should at the same time  be the spiritual head) to announce the election of a new Patriarch or  at least his co-ruler. All this time, the locum tenens of the diocese  of Constantinople was Aram Ateshyan, the attitude of the community  towards whom was rather mixed. The community has repeatedly appealed  to the Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II with the request to  remove Ateshyan because he is not engaged in his direct duties, does  not protect the interests of the community and is engaged in  self-enrichment.

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