03 April 2003, 02:07

Aykuni, Gurgen Sarkisovich

Armenian politician, journalist, and writer.

Born in 1889 in Turkey in a family of an office worker. In 1896 through 1906, studied in Etchmiadzin Gevorgyan Seminary, was expelled for revolutionary activities; later studied in Moscow Commerce Institute. Member of RSDRP since 1905. Led revolutionary activities in Armenia, Moscow, and Central Asia. In 1906-1909, Aykuni participated in Kagizman socialist democratic organization (propaganda activities among Tiflis railroad workers and Batumi workers, leaflet distribution, and proclamations). During WWI, published a row of articles in Armenian media where he pointed out the imperialistic nature of the war and disavowed the Turkish ruling circles as Armenian genocide organizers.

After the February Revolution of 1917, led revolutionary work among the workers and soldiers in Tiflis, Alexandropol, Karsa, and Sarikamysh. Aykuni was the only Bolshevik to participate in the First Congress of Western Armenians in Yerevan, was elected the deputy chairman of the West Armenian National Council. Directed the Bolshevik organization of Alexandropol and its printed medium - the Nor Kyank ("New Life") newspaper.

In November 1917, Aykuni, in Tiflis, together with a group of Armenian communists, started creating the Communist Party of Armenia, which was organizationally formed by early 1918. In 1918, Aykuni was the member of the Central Executive Committee board of the North Caucasian Soviet Republic and People's Commissar of Nationalities.

In March 1919, Aykuni participated in Constituent Congress of the Third International and signed its manifest. Worked in Armenian Affairs Commissariat. Later, was editor of several Armenian newspapers, led official affairs in Transcaucasia and Moscow. Engaged in literature. In 1937, was groundlessly repressed, spent over ten years in prison and exile, later worked in Russia. Returned to Armenia in 1954.

Deceased in Yerevan on April 13, 1966.

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