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YEREVAN. – The Pope’s visit to Armenia, as the first Christian state, will certainly give new impetus in terms of the opportunity to make use of the Papal archives, said Amatuni Virabyan, Director of the National Archives of Armenia, at a press conference on Wednesday.

In his words, the archives of the Bishop of Rome hold data on all the peoples of the world.

“The problem is that the huge information, which is stored in the archive, is not coordinated,” added Virabyan. “There are dark chapters likewise in the documents about Armenian history. We [i.e. Armenians] maintain contact with the Pope since the 3rd to 4th centuries, but we are more interested in the documents related to the Armenian Genocide.”

The Pope had his representatives in virtually all countries, including in the Ottoman Empire. In Amatuni Virabyan’s words the Papal archives have accumulated reports on the Christians in the Ottoman Empire, ever since the 19th century.

He informed that the National Archives of Armenia already have the photocopies of the documents of the open Papal archives.

“The question is that these archives are either in Latin or in French, and there are translation problems,” added Virabyan. “Although the translation from French does not cause many difficulties, the translation from Latin is a problem.”

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