Karen Khachanov has a Message for Armenia
By: AB G
Karen Khachanov, a Russian tennis player, has reached the semifinals of the Australian Open. The current disputes between Armenia and Azerbaijan have prompted many opinions, so Khachanov wrote his point of view on a camera lens, which had many people disapproving.
Karen Khachanov turned pro in 2013 when he was only 17 years old. He had been playing tennis since he was three years old and instantly fell in love with the sport. Khachanov’s parents, Abgar and Nataliya introduced him to tennis. Abgar is an Armenian from Yerevan, the capital, and Nataliya was a Russian. "I always say that I have Armenian roots," Tweeted Khachanov, although he plays for Russia in the Olympics and on the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) tour. He was born in Moscow, Russia, and now lives in Dubai.
In the third round of the 2023 Australian Open, Khachanov played Frances Tiafoe and battled a four-set match and won, after that, he played Yoshihito Nishioka and won against him in straight sets. After both matches, he wrote a message on the camera lens, “Stay strong, Artsakh,” referring to the border that Armenia and Azerbaijan were fighting over. The Azerbaijan Tennis Federation sent a letter to the International Tennis Federation complaining about the writing on the camera, although it did not get any recognition. “Writing heartfelt wishes on the camera lens is a kind of tradition in tennis, but Khachanov abused this, using it in his dirty plans,” The Azerbaijan Tennis Federation wrote in their letter to the ATP tour.
Armenia and Azerbaijan are two countries that share a border in Europe-Asia (can be considered in either country). These two countries have been fighting over a region called Nagorno-Karabakh, which is part of Azerbaijan although most of their population is Armenian, which causes disputes and tensions. In January of 2023, the European Union (EU) sent monitors to watch the border of Armenia and Azerbaijan, because there are many costs of this battle not only for Armenia and Azerbaijan. If these countries broke out into a war, there would be many casualties, and it would weaken the EU.