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Turkey Summons US Ambassador as House Recognizes ’Armenian Genocide’

Wednesday 30 October 2019
Turkey Summons US Ambassador as House Recognizes ’Armenian Genocide’

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Alwaght- Turkey summoned the US ambassador to Ankara on Wednesday after The US House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed a resolution recognizing the atrocities committed by the Ottoman Empire against Armenians in the First World War as a "genocide".

In a 405 to 11 vote, American legislators passed a resolution titled "Affirming the United States record on the Armenian Genocide".

The bill marks the first time either chamber of Congress has described the killings of Armenians as a genocide.

"Today let us clearly state the facts on the floor of this House, to be etched to the congressional record: The barbarism committed against the Armenian people was a genocide," said Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ahead of the vote.

Turkey denounced the passage of the resolution saying it “lacks any historical and legal basis,” and for the implementation of sanctions in connection with Turkey incursion into Northern Syria dubbed as “Operation Peace Spring.”

"The resolution itself is also not legally binding. As a meaningless political step, its sole addressees are the Armenian lobby and anti-Turkey groups," the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement late on Tuesday.

“The resolution as it stands is both against U.S. and international law as it is an incrimination against the principles defined in the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide,” it said, noting the absence of any verdict from a competent court announcing the 1915 events as a crime of genocide.       

'Today let us clearly state the facts on the floor of this House, to be etched to the congressional record: The barbarism committed against the Armenian people was a genocide'

- Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

The resolution states that "the United States has a proud history of recognising and condemning the Armenian Genocide, the killing of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1923".

The country has also provided "relief to the survivors of the campaign of genocide against Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs, Arameans, Maronites, and other Christians", the bill reads.

Similar measures have failed in the past - most recently in 2010 when then-President Barack Obama urged lawmakers to drop a resolution that would have recognised the killings as a genocide.

Successive US presidents have refrained from using the term "genocide" in reference to Ottoman massacres of Armenians to preserve Washington's alliance with Ankara.

While Turkey acknowledges that Ottoman forces killed Armenians in battles during World War I, it rejects the number of victims often cited by historians.

Ankara says the killings were not part of an organised campaign and do not amount to genocide, and it has previously condemned countries that recognised the killings as a genocide.

 

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University Students Gather in Front of Iranian Foreign Ministry Building in Solidarity with Nigerian Cleric Sheikh Zakzaky

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