Armenian Secret Army For The Liberation Of Armenia

From: http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/pgtrpt/2001/html/10252.htm#hum (http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/pgtrpt/2001/html/10252.htm#hum)

Alias

ASALA, The Orly Group, 3rd October Organization

Description

Marxist-Leninist Armenian terrorist group formed in 1975 with stated intention to compel the Turkish Government to acknowledge publicly its alleged responsibility for the deaths of 1.5 million Armenians in 1915, pay reparations, and cede territory for an Armenian homeland. Led by Hagop Hagopian until he was assassinated in Athens in April 1988.

Activities

Initial bombing and assassination attacks directed against Turkish targets. Later attacked French and Swiss targets to force release of imprisoned comrades. Made several minor bombing attacks against US airline offices in Western Europe in early 1980S. Bombing of Turkish airline counter at Orly Airport in Paris in 1983--eight killed and 55 wounded--led to split in group over rationale for causing indiscriminate casualties. Suffering from internal schisms, group has been relatively inactive over past four years, although recently claimed an unsuccessful attack on Turkish Ambassador to Hungary.

Strength

A few hundred members and sympathizers.

Location/Area of Operation

Australia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Canada, France, Greece, Holy See (vatican City State), Iran, Islamic Republic Of, Iraq, Lebanon, Western Europe, Armenia, United States, Canada, and Middle East.

External Aid

External Aid Has received aid, including training and safehaven, from Syria. May also receive some aid from Libya. Has extensive ties to radical Palestinian groups, including the PFLP and PFLP-GC.