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What is going to happen to ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh?

An ethnic Armenian boy from Nagorno-Karabakh, looks on from a car upon arrival in Armenia’s Goris, the town in Syunik region, Armenia, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023.

Although Emin Abrahamian was born in the United States, he learned Armenian before he learned English. He went to an Armenian elementary school in a Boston suburb, visited Armenia multiple times and joined the Armenian Student Association of Northeastern University as soon as his first semester of college had started.

Abrahamian, 21, who will graduate in May with a degree in bioengineering, says that a lot of people get surprised when they hear that his parents grew up in Iran, where his father’s family lived for generations in the predominantly Armenian town of Nor Jugha (or New Julfa) and where his mother’s family escaped to from Eastern Turkey during the Armenian genocide.

Like other members of the international Armenian diaspora, Abrahamian has been focused for the last week on the news coming out of Nagorno-Karabakh, a breakaway region in Azerbaijan about the size of Rhode Island populated by ethnic Armenians. “These past few days have really been tough for all diasporans,” he says.

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