The ownership certificate of Camp Armen Armenian orphanage in Istanbul, Turkey, has been handed over to the Armenian Protestant Church of the city.
The attorney of the church foundation, Sebuh Aslangil, announced that all activities regarding the return of the ownership certificate of the orphanage building have completed, and the building is now owned by the Armenian Protestant Church, reported Agos Armenian bilingual weekly of Istanbul.
Camp Armen Armenian orphanage was confiscated by the Turkish authorities back in 1987. Subsequently, it was sold to a Turkish businessman who, in turn, decided to demolish the orphanage and build luxury homes in the premises. As a result of public pressure, however, the demolition of the orphanage has been temporarily halted.
The camp was once home to around 1,500 Armenian children, including the late Hrant Dink—the founder and chief editor of Agos, and who was shot dead on January 19, 2007 outside the office of his weekly—, and his wife Rakel.
The orphanage sought to help underprivileged Armenian children and orphans, who had moved to Istanbul from other parts of Turkey, get an education.
Armenian activists keep watch in the area for several months now, and against the demolition of Camp Armen.