Serzh Sargsyan invites next President of Turkey to Yerevan to confront
Posted 20 January 2015 - 10:51 AM
Jan 19 2015
Armenians Decry Erdogan's Gallipoli Celebration as a "Provocation"
by Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D.19 Jan 20153
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has invited world leaders,
including Armenian President Serzh Sarkysian, to participate in
festivities to be held in Turkey to celebrate the anniversary of the
Battle of Gallipoli on April 24. Coincidentally, that is the very day
when Armenians are preparing to commemorate the hundredth anniversary
of the Armenian Genocide, perpetrated by the Ottoman Turks.
Christian Armenians living in Turkey have dubbed Erdogan's move a
"provocation." According to the newspaper Agos, the bilingual Armenian
weekly published in Istanbul, local sources have defined Erdogan's
invitation as "the dishonest action of an ill-mannered person."
For some time now, Armenia has been planning an international event
dedicated to the memory of the Armenian victims, for April 24, 2015,
the centennial of the genocide.
Armenians observe April 24, 1915 as the start of the Armenian
Genocide. On that day, several hundred Armenian intellectuals were
rounded up, arrested, and later executed.
Figures compiled by the University of Minnesota's Center for Holocaust
and Genocide Studies show that there were 2,133,190 Armenians in the
empire in 1914 and only about 387,800 by 1922, a loss of some 1.75
In a sternly worded letter, Armenia's President has responded to
Erdogan, condemning Turkey's "traditional policy of denialism" and
assuring him that before he organizes commemorative events, he should
publicly recognize and denounce the genocide.
"Leaving aside the well-known meaning of the Battle of Gallipoli or
the questionable role of Turkey in World War I and World War II,"
Sarkysian writes, "one shall recall that peace and friendship first
and foremost shall be based on the courage to confront the past, on
the historical justice, as well as on recognition of full-fledged
universal memory but never on selective approach."
Why suddenly commemorate the Battle of Gallipoli on April 24, when "it
began on March 18, 1915 and lasted till late January, 1916"? Sarkysian
Moreover, Sarkysian notes, the allies' land campaign--the Gallipoli
land battle--took place on April 25, 1915.
"What purpose does it serve if not a simple-minded goal to distract
the attention of the international community from the events dedicated
to the centennial of the Armenian Genocide?" he asks.
According to Sarkysian, "before organizing a commemorative event,
Turkey has a much more important obligation towards its own people and
the entire humanity, namely the recognition and condemnation of the
In a "PS" to the letter, Sarkysian reminds Erdogan that already "a few
months ago I invited you to join us in commemoration of memory of the
innocent victims of the Armenian Genocide in Yerevan on the 24th of
April." Sarkysian retorts that it is not "common practice" to receive
back an invitation for the same date "without receiving a response to
Posted 20 January 2015 - 11:05 AM
Gallipoli as a litmus paper
12:53, 19 January, 2015
100 days later, when the Armenian people will commemorate the victims
of the one of the crimes of the century - the Armenian Genocide on
April 24, the country, which carried out that crime, will hold a
celebration. By all means, Turkey never used that symbolic date as an
occasion to understand the pain of the other people, reassess the
history or to repent.
But this time, they will openly hold a celebration on the official
level without additional formalities. If it is not so, then how can
one explain the fact that the commemoration of the anniversary of the
Battle of Gallipoli (Çanakkale), which was usually marked on March 18
for years, has been moved to April 24 in the Turkish calendar? But
this is not the question of questions as well...
It is now a fact that modern Turkey does not merely deny the Armenian
Genocide, but also turns the pain of the Armenians into an occasion of
holding a festival referring to the commemoration of the anniversary
of the Battle of Gallipoli, as a justification. Denialism seems to be
a simple game in comparison with this. It was not surprising for any
individual, who has slightest idea about the Armenian-Turkish
relations, that the political elite of Turkey will take all the
startling steps advancing the 100th anniversary of Armenian Genocide.
Unfortunately, there are all bases to assume that this is the
beginning of new provocations by Ankara advancing the Armenian
Undoubtedly, Erdogan's next step was even more cynical - among the
other world leaders, he sent an invitation to the Armenian President
and received a self-restrained and honorable reply from a country that
mourns the massacre of its 1,5 million sons, but moves forward to the
future. Erdogan's invitation to Gallipoli sent to over 100 leaders of
the world is now a litmus paper and a unique measuring instrument of
For the Turkish state, this statement is an elimination and end of the
incomplete and fake condolences offered to the Armenian people in
April of the last year; for those taking an observers position, this
is an opportunity to remove the pharisaical mark of equality put
between the Armenians and the Turks; for us, this is a proof of the
truth enclosed in Homer's lines saying that "wolves and lambs have no
The ruins of Troy are not far from the Greek Gallipoli, which was
renamed to Çanakkale. Those walls witnessed the war, which became a
source of inspiration of ancient poetry. The cause of defeat in that
war was the gift, which was taken inside the gates of the impregnable
city to hold a celebration. The wooden horse - the trap of the
Achaeans, with the enemy's soldiers hidden inside of it, ruined Troy
and as Virgil states it became a warning: "Beware Danae bearing
Now, Erdogan's invitation is the horse, and the value basis,
encouraging the denial of the crimes against humanity, are the
soldiers, on which the Turkish President constructs his call. About
the soldiers, by the way... Few weeks after overcoming the threat of
losing the Battle of Gallipoli on March 1915, the Ottoman Empire began
realizing the program of total annihilation of the Armenians.
Erdogan declares that Armenians also participated in the Battle of
Gallipoli. This is a popular historical fact, but he has chosen a
wrong target in this case as well, to remember the Armenian soldiers
of the Ottoman army. I'm not certain how many cases one can encounter
in the history of the organized and mass elimination of the servicemen
of its own army solely because of their ethnicity, but the fact that
the Ottoman army became the cemetery of its Armenian servicemen is
certain not for me alone, but for a number of my colleagues studying
the history of the Ottoman army. The Armenians recruited to the
Turkish army in 1914 were disarmed and stage by stage sent to the
working battalions, where they were brutally murdered. Even the
Turkish archives state that only few hundred out of the tens of
thousands Armenian conscripts survived in the end of the WW I.
The elimination of Armenian soldiers was one of the stages of the
Armenian Genocide, though which the Armenians were even deprived of
the opportunity to protect their lives and dignity. The elimination of
the soldiers was followed by the mass massacres of the Armenian
intellectuals on April 24, as well as of unprotected women, children
and the old people. It is this crime that Ankara doesn't want to
accept, it is this day of mass murder that Turkey wants to celebrate
hiding behind the Battle of Gallipoli, thus passing to the massive
attempt of destroying the memory of the Armenian people.
I don't know whether the people, who'll go to Gallipoli (and there can
be such, as this trap was meant to turn the representatives of at
least Britain, Australia, and New Zealand into a part of denialism),
will remember that on that very hours, the neighboring country marks
the remembrance day of the victims of the genocide carried out by the
Turkish empire, but the thousands of people, who'll be in Yerevan on
that day, will make a realized choice for the sake of future, human
rights, and prevention of new genocides.
On April 24, the Tzitzernakaberd memorial will become the centre of
magnetic attraction of those people. And avoiding from the Gallipoli
trap will become a litmus paper for many, which will show everything
in a simple and unvarnished way.
Director of Armenpress News Agency
Doctor of History
Posted 21 January 2015 - 09:47 AM
Armenian Assembly of America News
1334 G Street, N.W., Suite 200
Washington, D.C. 20005
Tel: (202) 393-3434
Fax: (202) 638-4904
Turkey Calls for `New Beginning' with Armenia While Engaging in
Decades-Old Campaign of Genocide Denial
By Taniel Koushakjian
January 20, 2015
While Americans commemorated the life and legacy of renowned civil rights
activist Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on January 19, 2015, Armenians around
the world commemorated the life and legacy of Hrant Dink, an Armenian
Turkish journalist, and the founder and editor of AGOS Newspaper, who was
gunned down in the streets of Istanbul, Turkey on the same day on 2007.
Ironically, these two men have a lot in common: both sought to serve as a
bridge between two estranged communities (White Americans and African
Americans; Turks and Armenians); both rejected violence and extremism and
worked in an atmosphere of peace and common understanding; both were
assassinated for their ethnicity and their message of peace through
Some Armenian circles even call Hrant Dink the Martin Luther King of the
Armenians. Yet, to mark the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink's murder, Turkish
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu attempted to capitalize on Dink's message of
tolerance and understanding by calling for a `new beginning' in
Armenian-Turkish relations. `The way to leave the great tragedy that had
frozen history in 1915 is to break taboos,' according to Davutoglu.
However, it is beyond hypocritical to accept Davutoglu's call for a new
beginning while, under his leadership, the modern Turkish republic
continues to engage in the decades-old campaign of Armenian Genocide denial
across the globe.
Nothing could illustrate this fact more than the timing of the Gallipoli
centenary currently being planned by Ankara. As the acclaimed writer Robert
Fisk of The Independent recently wrote in an article entitled `The
Gallipoli centenary is a shameful attempt to hide the Armenian Holocaust,'
`This is not just diplomatic mischief.' Fisk reveals that, `The Turks are well
aware that the Allied landings at Gallipoli began on 25th April - the day
after Armenians mark the start of their genocide, which was ordered by the
Turkish government of the time - and that Australia and New Zealand mark
Anzac Day on the 25th. Only two years ago, then-president Abdullah Gul of
Turkey marked the 98th anniversary of the Great War battle on 18th March
2013 - the day on which the British naval bombardment of the Dardanelles
Peninsular began on the instructions of British First Lord of the Admiralty
Winston Churchill. At the time, no-one in Turkey suggested that Gallipoli
- Canakkale in Turkish - should be remembered on 24th April.'
It is difficult for anyone aware of the issues to believe Davutoglu's
statement that `Turkey, for its part, has moved beyond this point and left
stereotypical rhetoric and generalizations in the past.' If Turkey truly
wants a new beginning with Armenians, it would immediately end its
decades-old campaign of Armenian Genocide denial. But that policy
continues, nearly 100 years after committing the greatest crime against
humanity during World War I. To invoke the message of Hrant Dink in this
vein, Turkey, once again, exposes that it's true intentions are to continue
the Ottoman Turkish Empire's policy to distort the facts, distract
attention away from, and deny the Armenian Genocide.
Available online at: http://bit.ly/1Cf7DpP
Posted 21 January 2015 - 10:01 AM
Armenia gave Turkey adequate rebuff - opinions
12:15 * 20.01.15
The Armenian president's response to his Turkish counterpart's
invitation to attend the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli battle was
an absolutely adequate reaction to the country's polices, says Giro
Manoyan, the political director of the Armenian Revolutionary
"It was very good that the response letter reflects Turkey's policies
and also very good that our president reminded the president of Turkey
that he himself had an invitation to come to Armenia," he told
Tert.am, not ruling out the possibility of further tricks by the
country ahead of the April 24 Genocide centennial.
"Turkey is clearly doing this because of the very bad situation it has
found itself in in terms of the 100th anniversary of the Genocide. It
is a counteraction rather than a preemptive step by them towards the
events and steps already implemented in part by the Armenians," he
Asked whether Turkey will manage to eventually divert the world's
attention from the April 24 date, the politician said he expects the
contrary scenario. "I think it will be just the other way around: with
that very step, Turkey actually attracted the international
community's attention to April 24, the Genocide anniversary," he said,
considering the goal absolutely obvious.
As for Turkey's failure to respond to Armenian President Serzh
Sargsyan's invitation to visit the country on April 24 to participate
in the Genocide commemoration events, Manoyan said he finds such an
inaction absolutely characteristic of the country. "This is their
policy, and it not something new; once they are unable to present a
serious text on any issue, they just try to ignore it," he noted.
The politician further recalled the country's earlier pporposal for
creating a commission of historians ahead of the big tragedy's 90th
anniversary . "Armenia's then-president, Robert Kocharyan, replied
that the [unresolved] issues between the two countries are so big that
it is first of all necessary to start with inter-state relations
instead of leaving it to historians. For three years on end - up until
the Armenian president's 'football diplomacy' initiative - Turkey
denied [receiving] any response from Armenia. The president, prime
minister and minister of foreign affairs were telling lies by saying
that we had left their appeal unanswered," he said, describing the
policy as Turkey's common conduct.
"When they are unable to react in their own interest, they are trying
to ignore things," he added,
Asked whether any Turkish official is likely, after all, to visit
Armenia on April 24, Manoyan said he neither expect nor rules out such
Commenting on the president's response, Turkologist Ruben Melkonyan
agreed that it was a proportionate step, supported by stronger
arguments and academic records.
An important message, according to him, was the president's statement
denying any time connection between Armenian Genocide anniversary and
the Canakkale battle. He described Erdogan's move as an attempt to
declare an artificial holiday, adding that the President Sargasyan
reacted adequately to his Turkish counterpart's speculations that the
Armenians and Turks fought shoulder to shoulder during the battle.
"The second important remark is that the president stated clearly and
explicitly that they [the Turkish authorities] are intentionally
trying to shadow the message behind the Armenian Genocide day. But
that is doomed to failure," he added.
Commenting on the Turkish media's prompt reaction to the president's
rebuff, Melkonyan said he finds that the Turks have so far not found
any counterargument to the facts and statements presented. "I believe
that Armenia has to send letters with a similar accentuation to all
the invited leaders. Especially those who are willingly trying to be
get lured, reminding that the Turkish authorities are misrepresenting
history," he added.
Posted 21 January 2015 - 10:42 AM
Turkish PM Davutolgu's offer of a "New Beginning with Armenia"
translated (satirically) into the truth
20 January 2015 at 11:56
Ahmet Davutoglu (Turkish PM): OK. Armenians. Do I have your attention?
There's something I'd like to discuss about our common past. You know,
our shared history.
To start, I did, in fact, kill half your family. Tortured some. Raped others.
Sure. I burned down your house.
It's true. I stole all you owned and drove you into the street.
No argument from me here. I grew wealthy through my theft. And I got
powerful through your suffering, even as you've struggled just to
Yes. I've lied about my crime. Told people it was your fault.
Demonized you... the victim.
I've buried evidence.
I've bribed the cops to stay away.
I've bullied the neighbors into silence.
And it's all worked rather well. You could say I committed the perfect crime.
There's one thing though that's still bothering me, and that's you.
You, and your complaining and your endless claims.
You won't calm down and you won't give up.
But we can fix this. I'm sure about that, which is why I'd like to
propose a "new beginning." A fresh start, if you will, to
Now. Let's be clear about this. I won't be giving up anything I stole.
Won't compensate you for your losses. Won't even apologize for my
But I will need you to stop making accusations against me. To drop
your claims. To openly accept the status quo, and willingly leave me
in peace to finish consolidating the gains of my genocidal crime. And
then, see, we can be friends.
Just like old times.
Aram Suren Hamparian
Armenian National Committee of America
1711 N Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
Posted 22 January 2015 - 10:36 AM
You can't even fool a two years old with this blatant lie!
Turkish Foreign Ministry: Message to Armenians not tactical
Messages from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last year and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Jan. 20 addressed to Armenians were not “tactical” steps taken for the 100th anniversary of the 1915 events, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tanju Bilgic has said,Hurriyet Daily News reported.
“Those statements have sincere and functional dimensions. They represent a conscientious stance and a humane perspective,” Bilgic told reporters on Jan. 21.
In a commemoration message for the eighth anniversary of the assassination of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink on Jan. 20, Davutoglu called on all Armenians to jointly seek ways to resolve their historical differences with Turkey, stressing that it is a must for Turks and Armenians to “engage in humane relations and to recognize each other in light of 800 years of common history.”
Posted 22 January 2015 - 11:12 AM
Turkish PM's message 'new melody with old words' - MP
20:56 * 21.01.15
Chairman of the Standing Committee on Foreign Relations, Parliament of
Armenia, Artak Zakaryan, on his Facebook page, commented Turkish PM
Ahmet Davutoglu's message to the Armenian people.
In his message, the Turkish PM called on Armenians to join efforts
with Turks to find ways of settling historical disagreements, by
establishing "human contacts" and "getting to know each other in the
light of 800-year-long common history."
"Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's message on the occasion of
the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink's death is a new melody of Turkish
diplomacy with old words.
"This is my conviction is not because I do not any longer trust
official Turkey's empty calls for Armenian-Turkish rapprochement.
Rather, it is because the genocide denial policy, overt anti-Armenian
propaganda by means of all diplomatic and information channels,
economic blockade of Armenia has been Turkey's priority in all times.
Speaking of Armenian-Turkish friendship and getting rid of stereotypes
on the date marking the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink's murder is
nothing but official hypocrisy."
Turkey is not ready for a dialogue and especially for getting rid of
stereotypes, building confidence and developing cooperation.
Posted 22 January 2015 - 11:25 AM
ARMENIA MUST SHOW WORLD APRIL 24 IS TIME TO DECIDE - EXPERTS
14:04 * 22.01.15
The first thing Armenia was supposed to do was similar to that done by
Turkey, when it invited Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan to ceremonies
marking the centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli in Canakkale.
That is, Armenia must send out invitations to world leaders to
arrive in Yerevan and attend events marking the Armenian Genocide
centennial on April 24. Armenia must put a the question of their
stance point-blank, Styopa Safaryan, Head of the Armenian Institute
of International and Security Affairs (AIISA), told Tert.am.
"Are they are going to be in Istanbul or in Yerevan on April 24? And
letters must be sent out to world leaders, showing Turkey's conduct.
April 24 is a victory day and a jubilee for Turkey, with no affected
pain Erdogan is showing. That is, we should make them understand it is
a problem of their prioritizing where the world is going to find itself
100 years after the Armenian Genocide. This is the question," he said.
Turkey is showing deceit in preparing for the 2015 events and,
regrettably, the Armenian side will be disappointed because, Turkey
can insult, cynically commemorating the Battle of Gallipoli on April
24. On the other hand, it can create an impression of its willingness
for a dialogue.
Political analyst Saro Saroyan told Tert.am that Mr Davutoglu's
message, particularly his calls for "sharing our common pain" and
"studying our 800-year-long common history" are nothing but cunning
and not new at all.
"It is not the first such message," he said.
This is the spirit of Turkey's policy, including Erdogan's invitation
to 102 world leaders, list of events for that state to avert the
threats it has to face in the context of the Armenian Genocide
"And this all is in the context of Davutoglu's message. They have
nothing to do, but assure the world that their borders are open and
they are willing for something. But the Armenian Genocide problem
will not be resolved," Mr Saroyan said.
As to why the message was addressed to the Armenian people, not to
the Republic of Armenia, Mr Saroyan said that the format has changed
in the past two years. The Armenian-Turkish Reconciliation Commission
and later messages involved the Republic of Armenia, whereas Turkey's
present-day foreign policy is aimed at the Armenian Diaspora.
Turkey has come to realize that settling problems with Armenia without
the Armenian Diaspora's involvement was impossible, and a different
format is needed in dealing with the latter.
Posted 23 January 2015 - 10:11 AM
Thursday, January 22nd, 2015
Turkish Nationalist Claims Government Plans Land Transfer to Armenians
ANKARA—A leading Turkish opposition figure has claimed that the government is preparing to offer some land to Armenians as the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide approaches, Today’s Zaman reports.
“I know the AKP [ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party] has an ongoing project [on the issue]. A professor has been advising and working on the transfer of land to Armenians who will be brought to Turkey,” Oktay Vural, deputy chairman of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), told Today’s Zaman.
Noting that the Armenian diaspora has legal claims on lands, and citing recent law suits over lands at the former presidential residence in Ankara and some land in Istanbul’s Yeşilköy district, Vural demanded to know if it was a coincidence that the government earlier said the Istanbul Atatürk Airport in the city’s Yeşilköy district would be removed.
The former presidential residence, known as Çankaya presidential palace, was in service until President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was elected president in August last year.
Erdoğan lives instead in a recently built presidential palace, while the former presidential residence will be, as Erdoğan said, allocated to the Prime Ministry.
Vural said: “Will [Istanbul] Atatürk Airport and Çankaya presidential palace be given to meet the demands of the Armenian diaspora? Is it a coincidence that they are being evacuated at this particular juncture?”
A large majority of historians and scholars, as well as more than 20 countries and 41 states in the US, have recognized the Armenian Genocide of 1915, the one hundredth anniversary of which is this year.
But according to Vural, the issue should still be left for historians to discuss, saying that the issue should be kept outside the realm of politics and that Armenian demands “should not be legitimized.”
“Such an attitude would render Turks into being slaves on their own land,” Vural maintained.
“Are we going to retry history by legitimizing the demands of those who ask for Çankaya presidential palace and the Atatürk airport in Yeşilköy? What will the AK Party say if some others demand to have Istanbul back saying it used to be called Constantinople?” Vural said.
He added: “Those who seek to bring old issues under the spotlight should know that history cannot be undone by a political trial.”
Noting that some Turkish foundations used to have properties in Cyprus, which used to be part of the Ottoman Empire, Vural demanded to know if the government would make a claim on those properties together with those in the same category in Palestine, ironically ignoring the fact that the Republic of Turkey, in fact, currently occupies about half of Cyprus.
Posted 23 January 2015 - 10:16 AM
TURKEY AFRAID OF OWN ITS HISTORY: HAYK DEMOYAN
18:06, 22 Jan 2015
Turkey is afraid of its own past, its own history, which finds
expression in the policy of denial, Director of the Armenian Genocide
Museum Institute Hayk Demoyan told reporters today.
According to him, it's time to apply to the World Health Organization
to check the medical history of the Turkish officials.
The comments come after the condolences and invitations of Turkish
officials and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's statement on the
anniversary of Hrant Dink's assassination.
"We know the history of this illness. It's a fear of its own history
and past, reflected in the policy of denial. It's interesting to
check, however, whether the different invitations and messages are
the immediate complications of the disease," Demoyan said.
Posted 26 January 2015 - 10:30 AM
17:19 26/01/2015 » POLITICS
Nalbandian: Turkey failed to get rid of internal taboos
Over the past 5-6 years, the Turkish authorities had a good opportunity to ratify the Armenian-Turkish protocols, Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian told reporters on Monday.
“Unfortunately, they failed to get rid of their internal taboos and missed no chance to deny the Armenian Genocide and, to put it mildly, make unfriendly statements and actions for the Armenian people and Armenia,” he said, commenting on Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s recent statement on the 8th anniversary of Hrant Dink’s assassination.
In Nalbandian’s words, a question arises: why did Ahmet Davutoglu and other senior Turkish officials wait until 2015 to make a statement on Hrant Dink’s assassination and how can one explain the fact that over eight years the Turkish authorities failed to find those guilty of Dink’s murder?
“That statement has nothing new and an answer to it has already been given,” Mr Nalbandian said.
Posted 26 January 2015 - 11:38 AM
I WISH THE GROUND WOULD SWALLOW YOU UP - TURKISH ANALYST SLAMS ERDOGAN'S MESSAGE TO ARMENIAN LEADER
12:32 * 26.01.15
A Turkish political analyst has criticized President Recep Tayyip
Erdogan's move to invite the Armenian president to the country next
year to join the Gallipoli battle's 100th anniversary events on the
day coinciding with the Armenian Genocide centennial.
"I wish the ground would swallow you up. I see you have turned a blind
eye to those people's pain, but you could have at least abstained
from mocking at them. Against the background of such a disgrace,
Erdogan is inviting Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan to Canakkale,"
Bakin Oran said in an article published in Radikal.
He noted that Turkey earlier traditionally celebrated the the Canakkale
(Galippoli) battle anniversary on March 18. "The president will this
year head to Canakkale with the Azerbaijani despot Ilham Aliyev,
the Turkish foreign policy's biggest 'attraction stone'. And they
will celebrate [the anniversary] on the day symbolizing the heinous
atrocities against the Armenians, committed by butchers of Ittihat
ve Terakki," he wrote.
In his invitation letter, sent to the Armenian leader on January 16,
Erdogan said that they plan hold massive on April 23 and 24 to mark
the centenary of the battle. In his response message, issued shortly
after, President Sargsyan said that "it is not our rule to be hosted
without receiving an answer to our own invitation".
Posted 28 January 2015 - 10:14 AM
14:50 28/01/2015 » SOCIETY
Holocaust Memorial Day 2015: We must stop denying the Armenian Genocide by Ottoman Turkey a century ago
By Raffi Sarkissian, International Business Times
According to Prime Minster David Cameron, a national service of commemoration at the Cenotaph in London on Anzac Day, 25 April, 2015, will be a high-profile UK-Led event arranged in co-operation with the governments of Australia and New Zealand, who have held a ceremony there on that date for the last 98 years.
Unsurprisingly, the prime minister's announcement also includes a UK-led Commonwealth and Ireland ceremony at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Helles Memorial in Turkey on 24 April, 2015, the eve of the Gallipoli landings. The Prince of Wales will be leading the UK delegation.
But the year 2015 also marks the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, the first genocide of the 20th century, organised and perpetrated throughout different regions of the Ottoman Empire by the government of the Young Turks in 1915 during the course of World War I.
Armenian people across the world have been commemorating the Armenian Genocide on 24 April every year.
The British Armenian Community has petitioned Downing Street every year calling for official recognition of the veracity of the Armenian Genocide by the government in the UK, urging our successive prime ministers to stop the denial of the first genocide of 20th Century and complying with Turkey's policy of unjust denial.
In a blatant act of denial, Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Edogan invited Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan to ceremonies marking the Centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli in Çanakkale on 24 April 2015, which coincides with the Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day.
This is the first time that the Battle of Gallipoli will be commemorated on 24 April.
President Sargsyan rebuffed Erdogan's invitation by reminding Erdogan of the invitation handed to him in person several months ago for the events to be held in Yerevan, Armenia on 24 April, 2015 to mark the Centenary of the mass killing of Armenians across Ottoman Empire, to which the Turkish president has not ever responded.
Genocide scholars agree that 70% of the Armenian population, roughly 1.5 million, were killed mercilessly or fell victim to starvation and illness during the forced deportations. Massacres and deportations continued throughout 1916 and occurred with lesser intensity until 1923.
In an open letter addressed to Turkey's Prime Minster in 2005, the International Association of Genocide Scholars invited Turkey to face its history and officially recognise the Armenian Genocide. Since 1965 over 20 countries and international bodies, including Germany, Canada, France and Italy have recognised the veracity of the Armenian Genocide.
Turkey and its allies remain adamant by denying the historical validity of the Armenian Genocide. The UK, USA and Israel's governments fail to realise that by supporting Turkey's policy of denial, they promote injustice.
In the case of the British government, they deny their own history by forgetting the fact that in the course of World War One the British government revealed the truth about the genocidal fate of the Armenians.
So why, 100 years on, does today's British government refuse to acknowledge that truth?
The first phase of the massacres and forced deportations of Armenians began with the arrest, confinement and murder of 1,000 Armenian community leaders, doctors, lawyers, merchants, pharmacists and teachers in Constantinople, modern-day Istanbul, capital of Ottoman Turkey, on 24 April 1915.
This date is therefore significant and commemorative for Armenians across the globe.
Given the recent changes in Turkey and following the assassination of the Turkish Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, the Armenian Genocide is commemorated in Turkey every year. Turkish intellectuals openly address the subject, inviting their government to change their policy of denial.
The Turkish government should realise that after 100 years of denial, it is time to acknowledge their past and accept that millions of Armenians and other Christians fell victim to their 'relocation' policy of Christian minorities.
By acknowledging the truth, they will pave the way for Turkey's democratisation and progress bringing the country closer to European values.
Posted 30 January 2015 - 10:03 AM
Same BS different day!
Turkey is ready to take required steps if ‘found guilty’ of Armenian killings, Erdogan says
Accusing Turkey of committing genocide is a form of execution without trial, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has indicated, while also stating that Ankara is “ready to pay for any misdeed” if an “impartial board of historians” concludes that it was at fault for the events of 1915, Hurriyet Daily News reports.
“We are not obliged to accept that the so-called Armenian genocide was ‘made-to-order,’” Erdogan said late on Jan. 29, speaking during a live interview on public broadcaster TRT Haber.
“We are saying, ‘If you are sincere on this matter, then come, let’s leave this to historians, let historians study the issue, let’s open our archives,’” Erdogan said.
Posted 30 January 2015 - 10:57 AM
Armenian President: Denial of Armenian Genocide turns present-day
Turkish authorities into accomplices to the crime committed by Young
by Nana Martirosyan
Thursday, January 29, 17:28
A number of countries have already accepted Armenia's invitation to
attend the events commemorating the 100th year of the Armenian
Genocide, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said on Thursday during
the 5th meeting of the National Committee for the Commemoration of the
Centennial of the Armenian Genocide.
Sargsyan said that some countries are going to send governmental
delegations. Others will attend the events to be organized by local
The Armenian President believes that the scale of the events and the
number of those present are especially important now that Turkish
President Recep Erdogan has appeared with a cynical and short-sighted
invitation to attend the celebrations of the 100th year of the Turks'
victory in the Gallipoli Battle.
"They say that in politics all means will do, but in this particular
case Ankara has harmed its own self. Once I received that indecent
invitation, I hurried to publicly respond to it so as to prevent any
improper comments from international mass media. I think my response
and the reaction of the Turkish society have proved that it was an
injudicious initiative," Sargsyan said.
He believes that Erdogan's invitation was as unjustified as are all
forms of denial. "Denial is not only a complex of political
incometence but also a legal category. It turns the present-day
Turkish authorities into accomplices to the horrible crime committed
by their predecessors," the Armenian President said.
The President also pointed out that on Jan 28 Turkey was denying the
Genocide at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), when it tried
to present the case of the criminal nationalist repeatedly convicted
at the Turkish Court, Dogu Perincek, as the Court's legal view of the
Armenian Genocide. Sargsyan said that Armenia is participating in the
hearing as a third party. The Grand Chamber of the ECHR will decide
whether the Swiss legislation on the Genocide denial complies with the
European Convention on Human Rights.
"This is an important verdict for us, because we are sure that the
Genocide denial is a possible signal for reoccurrence of such crimes.
In the meantime, we do no think that the Perincek case is case about
legal recognition or denial of the Genocide. As people, who suffered
from the Genocide, we have never applied to court because we don't
consider it to be an issue of the ECHR's jurisdiction, however, the
Turkish propaganda will present it as its own victory in any case", he
said. The President noted that the Turkish side did not even hesitate
to release Perincek from prison or permit his departure so that he
could be present at the ECHR's session.
A hearing on the "Perincek vs. Switzerland" case was held at the
Strasbourg court's 17-member Grand Chamber on January 28. The verdict
will be announced in 6-8 months. In 2007, the Swiss court had
convicted Dogu Perincek under Article 216 of the Criminal Code for
denying the Armenian Genocide, subjecting him to financial and
The Court of Appeals of Vaud Canton and the Federal Supreme Court had
denied the appeal submitted against the given verdict. On December 17,
2013, the ECHR ruled in favor of Perincek's lawsuit that was filed
against Switzerland, according to which Swiss courts had violated
Perincek's right to freedom of speech. On March 11, Switzerland's
Federal Office of Justice had informed that Switzerland was preparing
to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) with the demand
for the Grand Chamber to reconsider Perincek's case. The ECHR had sent
the case to the Grand Chamber prior to March 17. On August 25, Armenia
filed an application to participate in the trial. Turkey had also
filed an application to participate. Armenia and Turkey participate in
the hearings as third parties.
Posted 31 January 2015 - 10:48 AM
14:00 31/01/2015 » IN THE WORLD
Hurriyet: Sargsyan rebuffs Erdogan again
The website of Turkish newspaper Hurriyet touched upon the statement Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan made at the 5th session of the State Commission on Coordination of the events for the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.
The website quoted a part from Serzh Sargsyan’s statement: “I am asking both the state commission members and the regional committees to join the diplomatic representatives of the Republic of Armenia in ensuring as broad participation as possible in the coming events and in the international media forum to be held at the end of March. It is particularly important, taking into account Turkey’s short-sighted and cynical decision to edit its own history through marking the anniversary of the Gallipoli Battle on the day commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. It is said that in politics all means are good, but I think that by doing it, official Ankara did itself a disservice. When I received that immodest invitation, I deemed it necessary to instantly and publicly respond to Recep Erdogan.”
Referring to the statement, Hurriyet said that the Armenian President rebuffed Erdogan’s invitation one more time.
The website noted that such steps by Turkey are evidence of not only its political weakness, but also its desire to avoid legal accountability.
Posted 31 January 2015 - 11:51 AM
Armenian president again blasts Ankara over April 24 invitation
GENOCIDE | 30.01.15 | 11:00
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan described as "cynical and
shortsighted" the recent invitation by his Turkish counterpart to
attend events marking the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Gallipoli
in Istanbul on April 24 - the day when Armenians around the world will
be marking the centennial of the Genocide committed in Ottoman Turkey.
"They say all measures are suitable in politics. But I believe
official Ankara offered a bad service to itself in this matter,"
Sargsyan said during Thursday's fifth session of the State Commission
for the Coordination of the Events for the commemoration of the 100th
anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.
In mid-January Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent out invitations to the
leaders of more than a hundred countries, including the Armenian
president, to come to Turkey for the massive ceremonies.
Sargsyan immediately replied then reminding Erdogan about his earlier
invitation to him to come to Yerevan "to face up to history" on April
24. The Armenian president also called the Turkish move a "primitive"
attempt to overshadow the centenary of the Armenian Genocide in the
Meanwhile, on Thursday the State Commission for the Coordination of
the Events for the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the
Armenian Genocide made a "pan-Armenian declaration" on the Centennial
of the Armenian Genocide.
The commission headed by President Sargsyan and comprising senior
Armenian state officials, the top clerics of the Armenian Apostolic
Church and Diaspora leaders met in Yerevan to discuss final
preparations for the anniversary commemorations. Sargsyan read out the
declaration adopted by them at the Tsitsernakaberd Genocide Memorial
The document made of 12 points, in particular, expresses "the united
will of Armenia and the Armenian people to achieve worldwide
recognition of the Armenian Genocide and the elimination of the
consequences of the Genocide, preparing to this end a file of legal
claims as a point of departure in the process of restoring individual,
communal and pan-Armenian rights and legitimate interests."
The declaration calls on the Turkish state to "face up to its own
history and past" by ending its long-running denial of the genocide.
It also praises a growing number of Turks acknowledging the genocidal
character of the 1915 mass killings and deportations of Armenians.
Posted 31 January 2015 - 11:58 AM
Turkish president's response to Pan-Armenian Declaration proves Turkey
has no answer
13:49 * 30.01.15
Chairman of the European Integration NGO Karen Bekaryan does not
consider it coincidence that thePan-Armenian Declaration on 100th
anniversary of Armenian Genocide mentions future generations.
It suggests that the relevant work will be continued. The document is
based on four fundamental principles - memory, gratitude,
international struggle and the way the Armenian people is passing.
"The third fundamental element is international struggle. Armenia
declares at such a level that the Armenian people, which survived
genocide, feels responsible for playing its role in preventing further
genocides," Mr Bekaryan said.
He commented on Turkish President Recep Erdogan's statement on Friday
that a commission of historians needs to be formed to study the issue
of Armenian genocide. He point out rapid developments.
"Turkey's 'unprecedentedly clever step', inviting world leaders to
Canakkale events, was, at first sight, a clever decision. However, we
can say now that it caused an opposite effect. To make sure, we can
look through international press because cynicism could not be
concealed," Mr Bekaryan said.
Turkey is well aware of that, as well as of its abortive attempt to
respond to that declaration.
"It proves they have nothing to answer. So they are telling the same
tale about historians."
Posted 31 January 2015 - 12:13 PM
MP: Turkey government powerless against Armenia Diaspora propaganda
Luftu Turkkan, Turkish parliament deputy from Nationalist Movement
Party (MHP), said at a press conference today that the Turkish
government is powerless against the propaganda launched by the
Armenian Diaspora in connection with the 100th anniversary of the
Armenian Genocide, Ermenihaber.am reports citing Ulusalkanal.com.tr.
The Turkish MP said the Armenian Diaspora actively disseminates
documentaries, movies and books, while the Turkish government,
particularly the Justice and Development Party (AKP), just confines
itself to words.
Lugtu Turkkan also considered as incorrect the Turkish authorities'
decision to invite the Armenian president to ceremonies marking the
centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli on April 24 - the Armenian
Genocide Remembrance Day.
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