The fliers, found taped to light poles near St. Mary’s Armenian Apostolic Church, contained messages that denied the Armenian genocide but claimed that Israel “fully supports” its completion. They referenced the ongoing blockade of the Nagorno-Karabakh region by Azerbaijan, which has become a humanitarian crisis.
The region is populated primarily by ethnic Armenians but lies within Azerbaijan; critics say the nation’s blockade has cut off access to food and medicine.
“[We] continue to witness the efforts by hate groups today which continue to promote the atrocious act of genocide right here in the city of Glendale, home to one of the largest Armenian communities in the United States,” Kassakhian said in a statement.
Kassakhian contended that those responsible for posting the signs were “undoubtedly emboldened” by Turkey’s continued denial of the Armenian genocide and by the blockade in Azerbaijan.
California Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Burbank) called the posters “vile.”
“Let’s be clear that we will not allow these hateful racists to create discord between the Jewish & Armenian communities,” Friedman said on Twitter.
The Armenian genocide resulted in the deaths of between an estimated 700,000 to 1.2 million Armenians living in the Ottoman empire in 1915.
It was not recognized by the United States until 2021 under President Biden.
The Glendale Police Department is investigating the incident as a possible hate crime against the Armenian church and community, the agency said in a statement.
The incident comes several months after anti-Armenian fliers were found taped to poles in Beverly Hills, KTLA reported.