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Turkish Politician Dogu Perincek Arrested...


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#41 Yervant1

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 10:30 AM

Commentary
Greece Blocks Talat Pasha Committee's
Genocide Denialist Stunt in Athens
By Harut Sassounian
Publisher, The California Courier
www.TheCaliforniaCourier.com

Dogu Perincek, leader of the Turkish Workers' Party, failed last week
to repeat in Greece the denialist show he orchestrated in Switzerland
10 years ago. Along with members of his blasphemous Talat Pasha
Committee, Perincek had planned to travel to Athens to challenge the
recent Greek law banning denial of the Armenian Genocide. He dreamed
of becoming `a hero' by filing a lawsuit against Greece in the
European Court of Human Rights after his anticipated arrest for
violating that law.
Back in 2005, after his detention by Swiss police, Perincek was found
guilty of denying the Armenian Genocide. When Switzerland's Federal
Court (Supreme Court) confirmed his sentence, Perincek appealed the
verdict in 2008 to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). On
December 17, 2013, five out of seven ECHR judges ruled in Perincek's
favor, claiming that the Swiss courts had violated his freedom of
speech. Three months later, Switzerland appealed ECHR's flawed ruling
to the court's 17-member Grand Chamber which is scheduled to review
the earlier verdict on January 28, 2015.
Fortunately, Perincek's planned prank in Greece ran into multiple
walls! To begin with, he could not leave Turkey due to a travel ban
after his conditional release from jail as participant in a coup
plot. In his absence, when his Party's 13-member delegation arrived at
Athens airport, the Greek authorities wisely decided to deport the
group back to Turkey rather than create a spectacle by arresting
them. The Greek police used the excuse that the Turkish visitors'
travel documents were not in order.
Upon returning to Istanbul, the expelled Turks were hailed as `heroes'
by fellow Party members. Perincek promptly blamed Pres. Erdogan and
Prime Minister Davutoglu for their `extremely shameful decision,'
preventing him from going to Greece to deny the Armenian
Genocide. Perincek's followers also accused Turkey's Ambassador to
Greece of colluding with the Greek government to undermine their
mission. In response, Turkish Ambassador Kerim Uras blamed the Talat
Pasha Committee members for damaging their own plans by announcing
them in advance, despite the Ambassador's admonition to arrive in
Athens quietly and go public after getting there! Uras added that due
to the Turkish delegation's premature public statements, the Armenian
community in Athens was prepared to hold a counter protest.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu defended the court's ban on
Perincek's travel to Greece. During a press conference, Cavusoglu
refuted Perincek's accusation that Ankara had tried to undermine his
committee's trip to Greece. However, a much more important trip awaits
Perincek on January 28, when he expects to attend the hearing of
Switzerland's appeal of his case at ECHR in Strasbourg. Even though
Cavusoglu had told Perincek in a phone conversation that the Turkish
government did not object to his going to Strasbourg, the Foreign
Minister warned that the final decision to lift Perincek's travel ban
rested with Turkey's Supreme Court. Ankara now needs to balance the
disadvantage of boosting the standing of an ultranationalist critic of
the ruling Party against the advantage of backing an overzealous
denialist during the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide.
The Turkish and international media widely disseminated the breaking
news I had first reported in a previous column, disclosing that Amal
Clooney along with Geoffrey Robertson and other distinguished
attorneys would represent Armenia at the ECHR hearing on January
28. The news of Mrs. Clooney's involvement in this legal case prompted
a bizarre reaction from Perincek who told the Turkish press: `The
woman can attend the court hearing, but even if the wife of Jesus
comes, she has no chance of success'!
Since my last column, several readers have pointed out the
little-known family link between Mrs. Clooney (Amal Ramzi Alamuddin)
and `Papa' Jakob Kuenzler, a Swiss missionary known as `the father of
Armenian orphans.' Kuenzler and his wife had diligently aided the
Armenian community in Ourfa for 25 years until the Genocide. Then in
the 1920's, the Kuenzlers began working for Near East Relief,
evacuating thousands of Armenian orphans from Turkey to Ghazir,
Lebanon, where Armenian girls wove the famous `White House rug' which
was donated to U.S. Pres. Calvin Coolidge in 1925. The Kuenzlers'
daughter Ida married Najib Alamuddin, the cousin of Amal's
grandfather, Khalil Alamuddin. In 1970, Ida Kuenzler published a
remarkable book about her father's devoted humanitarian work: `Papa
Kuenzler and the Armenians.'



#42 Yervant1

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Posted 14 January 2015 - 10:26 AM

FRANCOIS ROCHEBLOINE WRITING TO THE CONSTITUTIONAL COUNCIL

HAENEL CASE

Francois Rochebloine, MP of the Loire, wrote on January 6 letter to
Jean-Louis Debre, President of the Constitutional Council for expressed
"amazement", reading news reports on "allegedly maintained close
relations Monseiur Hubert Haenel, member of the Board Constitionnuel
,, with a former Turkish foreign minister, when the Council was
considering the draft law to al repression of denial of the Armenian
genocide.

For Francois Rochebloine, "if true, the alleged conduct Mr. Haenel
(...) lead to question, in accordance with the most established legal
principles, the validity of the deliberation" on Boyer law and "would
any event, likely to cast a damaging confidence in the independence
of the Board in this particular dispute. "

http://www.armenews....0113_110859.pdf

Wednesday, January 14, 2015, Ara © armenews.com

http://www.armenews...._article=106989



#43 Yervant1

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Posted 26 January 2015 - 11:41 AM

TURKISH ORGANIZATIONS TO GO AGAINST PERINCEK AT ECHR

January 25, 2015

ARMENPRESS - Turkey s Human Rights Association and the Truth, Justice
Remembrance Center will speak in favor of Armenia and against Turkey
during the January 28 trial for the case of Perin ek at the European
Court of Human Rights, as Armenpress reports, according to Istanbul
s Armenian Jamanak newspaper. The Vice-President of the Human Rights
Association of Turkey informed that the Association had submitted an
envelope of relevant documents to the corresponding bodies and has
now been informed that the application has been approved.

The Association s lawyer Eren Keskin went into the details on the
documents and mentioned that Perin ek is known for his actions against
the Armenians and for being head of the Taleat Pasha Committee involved
in carrying out activities for denial of the Armenian Genocide. The
other members of the Association mentioned that the documents in their
envelope indicate the aspects of racial discrimination in Perincek
s statements.

http://www.horizonwe...s/details/60339



#44 Yervant1

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 08:23 AM

IIGHRS_logo1e2598.jpg International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
A Division of the Zoryan Institute   PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                               CONTACT: Shannon Scully DATE: January 26, 2014                                     TEL: 416-250-9807

The Government of Turkey even Supports Criminals Convicted by its own Courts when it comes to the Armenian Genocide
The Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in Strasbourg will hear on January 28th, 2015, the case of Doğu Perinçek v. Switzerland.
 
Doğu Perinçek, an ultra-nationalist Turkish politician and member of the Talat Pasha Committee, had been convicted in Switzerland for incitement of discrimination for having called the Armenian Genocide an “international lie”. He claimed he had simply questioned the legal definition of the events of 1915 and he had not denied the massacres. His arguments were rejected by the Supreme Court of the Swiss Federation and as a result he took his case to the European Court of Human Rights, where he succeeded in arguing that his freedom of expression had been violated.
 
The Human Rights Association of Turkey joined the Centre for Truth Justice Memory, based in Istanbul, and the Toronto-based International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (A Division of the Zoryan Institute) in being granted leave to submit a brief to the Grand Chamber in this case. They had been able to persuade the Swiss Government to appeal the case, which was a crucial first step in trying to reverse the ECtHR’s flawed decision. The combined efforts of this Turkish-Armenian coalition presented evidence that no other party had brought forward regarding Perinçek’s agenda, and argued that this case is not about historical truth but rather is an issue of Human Rights law, freedom of expression under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, and the limitations to freedom of expression. One such limitation is when speech is used as incitement to discrimination and hatred. 
 
The press release by The Human Rights Association and the Center for Truth Justice Memory issued on the 23rd of January, affirms that:
 
“…denial of Armenian Genocide provokes ethnic hatred in Turkey and encourages anti-Armenian elements…the same Turkish society that is being targeted by this message has been fueled by hostility towards Armenians and other non-Muslim people for generations…hostility towards Armenians is not confined to mere words, but also takes lives…Armenians were attacked and Hrant Dink, the Founder and Director of AGOS was the victim of assassination whose perpetrators have yet to be brought to justice…Armenian private Sevag Sahin Balikci was shot dead in 2011 by another soldier in Batman, where he was on military duty, specifically on the day of April 24, the universal commemoration day marking the beginning of the Armenian Genocide.”

Please click here for the full press release.
 
The government of Turkey has intervened in this case in support of Perinçek, despite the fact that its own courts had convicted him of being a leading member of the Ergenekon terrorist organization and trying to overthrow the Turkish government. This demonstrates that the government of Turkey will even utilize criminals convicted by its own courts when it comes to denying the Armenian Genocide.
 
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#45 Yervant1

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 08:44 AM

TURKISH RIGHTS GROUPS TO JOIN PREINCEK CASE IN FAVOR OF ARMENIA

Monday, January 26th, 2015 |

The Human Rights Association from Turkey and The Center for Truth
Justice Memory will present legal briefs in favor of Armenia

ISTANBUL--Two prominent human rights groups in Turkey have announced
that they will take part in the pending Armenian Genocide denial case
at the European Court of Human Rights, known as the Perincek Case. The
Human Rights Association from Turkey and The Center for Truth Justice
Memory will partner with the Toronto-based International Institute
for Genocide & Human Rights Studies to present legal briefs against
Perincek and in favor of Armenia.

Below is the text of the announcement issued Friday on behalf of the
two Turkish human rights groups.

On January 28, 2015, the lawsuit Dogu Perincek v. Switzerland will
begin retrial in the Grand Chamber, which acts in the capacity of
court of appeals for the European Court of Human Rights.

It is now common knowledge that in 2005, Dogu Perincek traveled to
Switzerland, which has officially recognized the Armenian Genocide and
passed a law criminalizing its denial, in order to issue declarations
in Bern and Lausanne where he impugned the Armenian Genocide as
a fabrication. In 2007, Perincek was found guilty of deliberately
violating national law and convicted by the court of Lausanne. Upon
Perincek's appeal, the European Court of Human Rights ruled in his
favor in 2008 and found that the court of Lausanne had violated the
freedom of expression principle enshrined in the European Convention
of Human Rights, article 10.

The Human Rights Association sent a letter to the Swiss Federal Office
of Justice in 2014, demonstrating in detail how the denial of the
Armenian Genocide incites hostility toward Armenians and imploring
Switzerland to appeal the ECHR decision. Switzerland's subsequent
appeal and request for retrial were accepted in June 2014.

The first hearing of the said retrial will take place on January
28, 2015.

The Human Rights Association from Turkey joined The Center for
Truth Justice Memory and the Toronto-based International Institute
for Genocide & Human Rights Studies to appeal to the ECHR in July
to present a Third Party Opinion File, i.e., to be accepted as
intervening party. The ECHR approved this request by the three human
rights organizations.

We have explained in this file that the denial of the Armenian
Genocide provokes ethnic hatred in Turkey and encourages anti-Armenian
elements. Neither the ECHR ruling and nor the file we have presented
as third party concerns itself with the historical reality of the
1915-1917 massacres or their precise legal definition. The crux of the
issue lies in the fact that Perincek's declarations are conducive to
racism and discrimination. In this sense, the retrial in the Grand
Chamber carries special significance as a precedent in addressing
denial, minimization, and justification in a context outside of
the Holocaust.

The ECHR decision had restricted denialism and discrimination to their
effect on Swiss Armenians and disregarded Perincek's leadership of
the Talat Pasha Committee, as well as the fact that his refutations
of the genocide as an international lie have direct bearing on the
Armenians of Turkey even if they were pronounced in Lausanne. We
have therefore argued in our file that Perincek's declarations do
not only concern the definition of events, but also commit the crime
of discrimination; that the ruling must take into account Perincek's
position as a prominent politician from Turkey, the head of the Labor
Party, and the leader of the Talat Pasha Committee--as well as that
Committee's objectives and operations.

Yes, the act that was found criminal according to the Swiss law
was committed on Swiss soil, but the Talat Pasha Committee and its
leaders, including Perincek, have been conducting operations in Turkey
and targeting Turkish society. The recipient of their message--that
those who listen to Armenians will be subject to intervention and
retribution, even if they are at the other ends of the world--was
Turkish society. The same Turkish society that is being targeted by
this message has been fueled by hostility toward Armenians and other
non-Muslim peoples for generations. Anti-

Armenian sentiments and thoughts have been exacerbated throughout
Republican history by the constant dogma, mass media dissemination
and educational indoctrination of the notion that the eradication of
the Ottoman Armenian population and civilization is a lie.

Denialism does not simply consist of declarations along the lines of
"no genocide has taken place." Denialism requires the justification of
the irreversible and inexpiable eradication of a people: The notion
that "it is Armenians who are responsible for the events," namely
that Armenians had deserved eradication, that they had "stabbed Turks
in the back" and collaborated with the enemy, has always been and is
still perpetually reiterated in classrooms, university conferences,
TV series and programs, and books.

Hostility toward Armenians is not confined to mere words but also
takes lives. In this context of discrimination and ethnic hatred,
Armenians were attacked and Hrant Dink, the founder and director of
Agos, was the victim of an assassination whose perpetrators have yet
to be brought to justice.

Armenian private Sevag Å~^ahin Balıkcı was shot dead in 2011 by
another soldier in Batman, where he was on military duty, specifically
on the day of April 24, the universal commemoration day marking
the beginning of the Armenian Genocide. Court proceedings have met
with significant public distrust, while the press has indicated
that commanders pressured privates to testify that the incident was
"an accident."

Furthermore, the "Hodjali Protests" of February 27, 2012, which took
place in the central Taksim square and featured as a speaker the
Minister of Internal Affairs, displayed banners proclaiming "You Are
All Armenians, You Are All Bastards." Within the span of two months
from 2012 to 2013, the Samatya district of Istanbul, which is densely
populated by Armenians, saw similar and successive attacks on elderly
Armenian women--among them the murder victim Maritsa Kucuk, whose bones
were smashed and entire body relentlessly stabbed. And on February 23,
2014, banners saying "Long Live Ogun Samasts, Damned be Hrant Dinks"
were displayed, unprohibited, in front of the newspaper Agos.

In sum, genocide denial is the chief, most fundamental basis for
the state-sanctioned threat to existence under which Armenians
continue to live in Turkey. As two human rights associations that
have witnessed first-hand and up close the provocation of ethnic
hatred by anti-Armenian acts and declarations, we, the Human Rights
Association and the Center for Truth Justice Memory, consider it
our natural duty, as per our raison d'être and field of operation,
to present our observations to the European Court of Human Rights in
order to contribute to the making of a fair and just decision.

Finally, we insist yet again: Denial causes hatred and hatred kills.

We defend the inalienability of the right to live in safety, unafraid
of tomorrow, and hope that the European Court of Human Rights will,
in the name of the universal law of human rights, obstruct discourses
that incite acts in violation of this inalienable right.

http://asbarez.com/1...vor-of-armenia/
 



#46 Yervant1

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 10:09 AM

17:38 28/01/2015 » LAW

Amal Clooney: This court is well aware of Turkey’s attitude to protection of freedom of expression

The European Court of Human Rights hearing in the case of Perincek v. Switzerland is closed. All parties involved in the case made remarks. Dogu Perincek and his lawyers spoke first. Then Switzerland, the respondent in this case, spoke, and Turkey and Armenia, acting in the case as third party, spoke next.
Armenia’s representative to the European Court of Human Rights Gevorg Kostanyan drew the court’s attention to a huge number of historical facts which prove that the Ottoman Empire in the last years of its existence “planned and cynically” perpetrated the Armenian Genocide. 

Lawyer Geoffrey Robertson, representing Armenia, stressed that Dogu Perincek traveled to Switzerland in 2005 with an aim to deliberately violate the Swiss law by making a statement denying the Armenian Genocide.
Amal Clooney, who defends Armenia’s interests, presented irrefutable historical facts about the Armenian Genocide, noting that the facts of mass killings obviously confirm that what happened in 1915 was genocide and the organizers pursued a goal to perpetrate genocide.
In response to the remarks by the representatives of Turkey about the need to defend the freedom of expression, she said, “This court is well aware of Turkey’s attitude to the protection of freedom of expression,” referring to the hundreds of cases under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
Dogu Perincek in his closing remarks tried to present his views about the “Armenian Genocide - an imperialist lie,” but the court chairman interrupted him, not allowing him to make such statements as “Talaat was a fighter of freedom” and use the court for spreading propaganda theses.
The verdict in the case is expected to be announced in 6-8 months.
In 2008, a Swiss court convicted Dogu Perincek for denying the Armenian Genocide. In December 2013, the ECHR ruled in favor of Perincek’s lawsuit, filed against Switzerland. Then the government of Switzerland decided to petition that the Dogu Perincek case be referred for a review by the ECHR Grand Chamber. Later, Armenia petitioned to the ECHR and it now acts as a third party in this case. 
 

Source: Panorama.am



#47 Yervant1

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 11:19 AM

  IIGHRS_logo1e2598.jpg International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
A Division of the Zoryan Institute  
PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                              CONTACT: Shannon Scully
DATE: January 27, 2015
                                        TEL: 416-250-9807

Dr. Akhavan explains the role of Turkish government in Perincek v. Switzerland case at ECHR in his interview with Civilnet
 
 
a5e4e88c-e677-4ac7-afd6-63a239a1c4f4.jpg
Dr. Payam Akhavan is a Professor of International Law at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, and a Visiting Fellow at Oxford University.  He was previously a UN prosecutor at The Hague and has served as counsel in leading cases before international courts and tribunals.  He spoke about his representation of a Coalition of Armenian and Turkish NGOs that have intervened in the Perinçek case, which will be heard by the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg on January 28th. Doğu Perinçek, an ultra-nationalist Turkish politician and member of the Talat Pasha Committee, had been convicted in Switzerland for incitement to discrimination for having called the Armenian Genocide an “international lie”.  Before the European Court, he succeeded in arguing that his freedom of expression had been violated, and that he was not promoting hatred, because he was only questioning the legal classification of the events of 1915, which he did not deny.  After a campaign by Armenian and Turkish NGOs, the Swiss Government was persuaded to appeal the case to the Grand Chamber of the European Court, to try and reverse this flawed decision.
 
 Professor Akhavan, how did you become involved with the Perinçek case?

I was first alerted to the Perinçek decision by my friends at the Zoryan Institute in Toronto.  They were very concerned about this legal precedent being used by the Turkish Government as well as ultranationalist politicians to argue that the European Court denies that the events of 1915 constituted genocide.  That of course is not what the Court said, but its decision was twisted and misrepresented, to reinforce the long-standing policy of denial and incitement to hatred against Armenians. Zoryan led a costly campaign to publish advertisements in Swiss newspapers in both French and German and to cooperate with other Armenian organizations to persuade Switzerland to appeal the case.  They had to overcome the opposition of Turkey which of course did not want the case to be appealed.  Turkey had intervened in support of Perinçek even though its own courts, the Istanbul Penal Court, had convicted him of being a leading member of the Ergenekon terrorist organization!  It is important that Turkish NGOs such as the Turkish Human Rights Association, the oldest and biggest human rights NGO in Turkey with thousands of members, had also written to the Swiss Government in favour of an appeal.  Once Switzerland agreed to appeal the case, we decided to put together a coalition of Armenian and Turkish NGOs to intervene in the case.  We thought that the composition of the coalition itself would be a powerful message to the Court that this was not an “Armenian” issue; it was a human rights issue.  Perinçek was not interested in academic debates on international law, and whether the term “genocide” applies to the events of 1915 or not.  He is an ultranationalist politician whose platform is incitement to hatred against Armenians, based on paranoid conspiracy theories and historical revisionism.  It was also imperative for the Court to know the details of the Ergenekon judgment and for this we needed qualified and dedicated Turkish lawyers and activists and translators and months of work in coordination with knowledgeable and diligent researchers at Zoryan and the lawyers in London and Oxford to go through the 17,000 pages of the decision, the international case-law, and complex arguments, to find what was most relevant to establishing the discriminatory motives of Perinçek.  So in the end, the coalition was Zoryan, or rather then Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, which is under Zoryan’s umbrella, together with the Turkish Human Rights Association and the Truth Justice Memory Centre in Istanbul, and the combined efforts of this team, I think, had outstanding results in terms of the quality and importance of the submission, which could have significant impact on the Court’s decision, and which represents evidence that no other party has brought forward in this case.  In other words, without this intervention, without this NGO coalition, the facts of the Ergenekon judgment, and Perinçek’s true agenda, would not have come to light.

Is the case about the historical truth of the Armenian Genocide?  What is really at issue?

We have emphasized that the case is not about the historical truth as such.  From the perspective of human rights law, freedom of expression under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, is subjected to certain limitations.  One of those is when speech amounts to incitement to discrimination and hatred.  So debates about the historical truth or legal classification of atrocities as genocide or some other label are not the real issue.  The fundamental issue is whether Perinçek’s statements when considered in their proper context constitute incitement to discrimination and hatred.

What does the intervention of the coalition add that the other parties to the case have not already said? Why is it significant?

The Court did not consider the impact of Perinçek’s statements on Armenians in Turkey.  It may be more difficult to argue that his inflammatory statements threaten Armenians in Switzerland.  But anyone that knows about the murder of Hrant Dink and the continuing cover-up in failing to punish the culprits knows that calling the Armenian Genocide “a big lie” is clearly hateful, and can even result in violence against Armenians in Turkey.  The Swiss judgment against Perinçek did refer to his membership of the Talat Pasha Committee, so this fact is in the record.  All that we did was to provide the Grand Chamber with a fuller picture of the significance of that Committee, which of course, is also referred to by the Istanbul Penal Court in the Ergenekon judgment.  Indeed, that judgment refers to Perinçek as the head of “propaganda” and “psychological war”, refers to his promotion of hatred against Armenians, and further links Ergenekon with the murder of Dink and members of other Christian minorities in Turkey.  Turkey’s intervention argues desperately that only what Perinçek did in Switzerland is relevant; that the Court should somehow ignore who Perinçek really is and why he is on this relentless campaign to deny the Armenian Genocide.  Clearly, the case is not about whether international lawyers could dispute legal classification of those events as genocide, and it would be a mistake to go to Court and argue that it is a genocide as if that is the issue.  The issue is whether Perinçek has discriminatory motives and the answer to that question is rather obvious.

How do you contrast the intervention of this NGO coalition with that of Armenia and Turkey?

Governments are obviously important given that they are the ones that signed the European Convention that established the Court.  But Governments have political interests and their perspectives are shaped by different considerations than civil society actors such as human rights NGOs.  I think it is important that in this second round, Armenia has intervened, just as Turkey did in the first round, and now, in the second round.  Perhaps their respective submissions will neutralize each other.  But I think the Court will take notice that Armenian and Turkish human rights NGOs, that are not motivated by political interests, are joining forces to expose Perinçek’s hateful and violent agenda.  And I believe that the details of the Ergenekon judgment will be crucial evidence of his motivations, based on the decision of Turkey’s own courts!  Finally, I think that with all the media hype and attention being given to this case, we must not forget that the real heroes are the Turkish human rights activists and intellectuals that are standing in solidarity with their fellow Armenians in Turkey, who face a life of increasing pressure and intimidation and even violence.  The Turkish activists face hate mail and death threats for having stood in solidarity on the issue of the Armenian Genocide.  They are courageous and righteous, and deserve our praise and recognition as one of the most important voices in the Perinçek affair.

 
 
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#48 Yervant1

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Posted 29 January 2015 - 10:15 AM

IIGHRS_logo1e2598.jpg International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
A Division of the Zoryan Institute  
PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                              CONTACT: Shannon Scully
DATE: January 28, 2015
                                        TEL: 416-250-9807

European Court of Human Rights Grand Chamber hears Perinçek v. Switzerland case
 
 
273f98f2-ec06-45b2-9dcc-5e47b1c1ca78.jpg
Strasbourg, France—The European Court of Human Rights held a Grand Chamber hearing today, Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at 9.15 a.m. in Strasbourg, France on the case of Perinçek v. Switzerland (application no. 27510/08).
The case concerns the criminal conviction of Turkish politician Doğu Perinçek for publicly denying the Armenian Genocide while in Switzerland.  On March 9, 2007, the Lausanne Police Court had convicted Mr. Perinçek of racial discrimination under Article 261 bis, Paragraph 4 of the Swiss Criminal Code, finding that his motives were of a racist tendency and did not merely contribute to a historical debate. After exhausting his appeals, which were dismissed at various levels of the Swiss courts including the Federal Court of Switzerland, Mr. Perinçek’s appealed to the ECHR on June 10, 2008.

View a clip of the trial on the ECHR website: http://www.echr.coe.int/

The International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (IIGHRS) (A Division of the Zoryan Institute) was represented as observers at the Grand Chamber, by its President, Mr. K.M. Greg Sarkissian and Mr. R. Bedrosyan, an advisor to the Zoryan Institute on Turkish-Armenian issues.  They had worked jointly with the Human Rights Association of Turkey and the Truth Justice Memory Centre to submit a third party amicus brief, for which this Armenian-Turkish coalition had been granted leave by the Grand Chamber.
 
According to Payam Akhavan, the lawyer representing a coalition of Turkish and Armenian human rights associations:
a5e4e88c-e677-4ac7-afd6-63a239a1c4f4.jpg
We have emphasized that the case is not about the historical truth as such.  From the perspective of human rights law, freedom of expression under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, is subjected to certain limitations. 
Above: Dr. Payam Akhavan

One of those is when speech amounts to incitement to discrimination and hatred.  So debates about the historical truth or legal classification of atrocities as genocide or some other label are not the real issue.  The fundamental issue is whether Perinçek’s statements when considered in their proper context constitute incitement to discrimination and hatred.

The Applicant, Mr. Doğu Perinçek, Chairman of the Socialist Workers Party of Turkey, with ties to the nationalist Talat Pasha Organization, stated the following:
 

We are here for the freedom of expression of the people of Europe. I have always shared the pain of our Armenian nationals...Genocide allegations have turned into a tool to humiliate the Turks.
 
Mr. Perinçek had travelled to Switzerland to speak at a conference and made public appearances wherein he referred to the Armenian Genocide as an “international lie” and defended his position during today’s hearing as follows:
 

This is an imperialist lie, an international lie.  It’s been brought to the fore by the Imperialist powers – they were the parties to the First World War, they were against the Ottoman Empire which was basically why such a propaganda was started against the Ottoman Empire.
 
Frank Schurmann, the lawyer representing Switzerland, stressed that Perinçek's statements amounted to hate speech against Armenians. Mr. Schurmann substantiated this by referring to the written submission jointly prepared by the IIGHRS and the two Turkish NGOs which documented Perinçek's racist and anti-Armenian activities in Turkey.
 
Mr. Gevorg Kostanyan, prosecutor general of Armenia and Agent representing the government of Armenia during the proceedings, said:
 

As an intervener, Armenia’s role is to point to the correct principles under which this case should be decided and to indicate errors that have infected the lower court judgment. Whether or not its conclusion was correct does not matter, as much as certain misstatements of fact, which have comforted genocide deniers throughout the world. We are here to ensure that such errors should never be repeated by a court that speaks in the name of human rights.
 
Mr. Geoffrey Robertson, Counsel representing the Armenian Government, began his argument by referring to Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights:
 

It sets up a presumption in favour of free speech, in a Convention that protects other rights to human dignity, to live free of torture and discrimination, to say “I am Jewish,” “I am Muslim,” or “I am Armenian,” without fear that the race we happen to be born into will be stigmatised as inferior or sub-human.
 
He also referred to “egregious errors” made by the Lower Chamber, which he urged the Grand Chamber not to repeat. Mr. Robertson summed up the key issue in the case as follows:
 

The issue in this case is whether the Swiss law, under which this man, Perinçek, was convicted…conforms to the Freedom of Expression Guarantee under Article 10 of the European Convention…Article 10 has its proviso, which permits speech to be restrained by law on those occasions when it’s likely to and intended to, cause harm to incite racial violence or hatred.  Now, in the mouth of a rabid racist with a doctorate in law and a political party at his back, and people waving flags and fists outside this Court now, genocide denial can have a double impact:  It makes the survivors of genocide and their children and grandchildren feel the worthlessness and contempt and inferiority that the initial perpetrators intended, and it incites admiration for those perpetrators and a dangerous desire to emulate them.  In this case, the Swiss courts decided that Perinçek’s intentions were racist…that his words in the Turkish language were designed to arouse his supporters in Turkey to hate Armenians and applaud his hero, Talat Pasha, the Ottoman Hitler.

Mrs. Amal Alamuddin-Clooney, also representing Armenia, made her opening statement thusly,
80aebf22-81fc-4866-b68d-862effb0fb9e.jpg
The most important error in the Court’s judgment is that it has cast doubt on the fact that there was a genocide against the Armenian people 100 years ago.  I will argue that a finding on genocide was first, not necessary in this case; second, that it was reached without a proper forensic process; and third and most importantly - that it was
wrong.  The court itself admitted that it was “not required to determine” whether the massacres suffered by Armenians amounted to genocide...
Above left to right: Geoffrey Robertson,
Amal Alamuddin-Clooney, Greg Sarkissian,
Raffi Bedrosyan
She pointed out that the Ottoman military courts convicted the principal perpetrators, including Talat Pasha, for the mass murders rather than genocide because the word had not yet been invented. In her concluding remarks, Mrs. Alamuddin-Clooney stated:
 

Armenia, as a third party intervening in this case, has not made submissions on the merits and is not here to argue against freedom of expression – any more than Turkey is here to defend it.  This court knows very well how disgraceful Turkey’s record on free expression is…So although this case involves a Turkish citizen, Armenia has every interest in ensuring that its own citizens do not get caught in a net that criminalizes speech too broadly.  And the family of Mr. Hrant Dink know that all too well…The stakes could not be higher for the Armenian people.  The decision you are reviewing was a serious step in the wrong direction.  Perinçek and his colleagues on the Talat Pasha Committee, the committee named after the principal perpetrators of the Genocide and deemed by the European Parliament to be xenophobic, have celebrated the judgment in its current terms and triumphantly proclaimed that it has solved the ‘Armenian Question’ once and for all...We hope that the Grand Chamber will set the record straight.  

The IIGHRS and its Turkish coalition partners hope that the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights indeed sets the record straight by confirming that the case is about the speech by Perinçek with the intent of incitement to discrimination and hatred and not a debate about historical truth or of a legal classification of genocide. 
 
The Grand Chamber is expected to render its judgment in approximately 6 to 8 months.


The Zoryan Institute and its subsidiary, the International Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, is the first non-profit, international center devoted to the research and documentation of contemporary issues with a focus on Genocide, Diaspora and Armenia.

For more information please contact the Zoryan Institute by email admin@genocidestudies.org or telephone 416-250-9807.


 
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#49 Yervant1

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Posted 30 January 2015 - 10:35 AM

Dogu Perinçek entrapped at European Court of Human Rights - Sarkis Shahinian

15:40 * 29.01.15


Sarkis Shahinian, General Secretary of the Swiss Parliamentary Group
Switzerland-Armenia and Honorary President of the Switzerland-Armenia
Association (SAA), believes that an expected ruling on the Perinçek v
Switzerland case by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in the
Armenian side's favor stands a high chance.

Dogu Perinçek was entrapped at the hearing when he introduced himself
as a "big democrat" like Talaat Pasha, Mr Shahinian told Tert.am.

"Our right of appeal means that the judges that approved that ruling
realized that serious errors involving facts had been committed at the
previous sitting. Serious interpretation errors were committed, and 12
parties were afforded an opportunity to present their positions in
written form and insist on them. I think the written evidence was
weightier than hearing."

Geoffrey Robertson made an excellent speech. He showed who Dogu
Perinçek is. Perinçek himself was entrapped as he attempted to put
forward Talaat Pasha's principles, claiming he is a democrat and
champion of European values. It is like saying that Hitler was a great
democrat. He drew unacceptable parallels.

"So I can say we have quite good chances. On the other hand, we should
note that the Turkish side defended itself efficiently. I can say we
have fifty-fifty chances."

With respect to the opinions that Turkey is a politically and
economically powerful state, but it is a matter of moral choice for
state leaders where they should be present - at events marking the
Armenian Genocide centennial in Armenia or at events marking the
Battle of Gallipoli, in Turkey, Mr Shahinian said:

"Each state is pursuing its own interests. The problem is that
Armenia's positions in the international arena are much weaker than
Turkey's. Turks can submit their 'truth' to states and make them
support their [Turks] position. I mean the statement by the Swiss
foreign office last week."

It would be self-deception to expect a moral behavior under the
circumstances. Therefore, the Armenians side should afford itself
legal and historical opportunities, which requires determination, Mr
Shahinian said.

The Armenian Genocide is actually on the agenda. As to whether the
issue was addressed at the ECHR hearing, he said that the Armenian
side tried to raise the issue.

"However, it is a minefield. It is most difficult because, on the one
hand, the ECHR states that the legal wording of the Armenian massacres
is not of primary importance. On the other hand, it was what they
actually tried to do. That is, they were trying to replace tasks,
which is a dishonest approach."

Perinçek began his speech by citing Giordano Bruno, placing emphasis
on freedom of speech in Europe.

"This is the easiest way to act as a 'speaker.' One has to see his
real being to understand that he is actually a criminal and a cunning
person 'loyal' to freedom of expression."


http://www.tert.am/e...ahinyan/1573109



#50 Yervant1

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Posted 30 January 2015 - 11:18 AM

`Armenian Genocide' among most searched surveys on Yahoo

January 29, 2015


ARMENPRESS - The Armenian Genocide was one of the ten most searched
surveys in Yahoo search network on January 28. Armenpress reports that
the Head of the Armenian National Committee of America Aram Hamparian
wrote about it in his twitter blog. In the result of the searches by
the Yahoo users, the `Armenian Genocide' has appeared on the ninth
horizontal. Hamparian expressed gratitude to Amal Clooney and Geoffrey
Robertson, representing the Armenian side at the European Court for
Human Rights at the hearing of the DoÄ?u Perinçek on January 28, who as
well contributed in the coverage of the issue in the Internet.


http://www.horizonwe...s/details/60620



#51 Yervant1

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Posted 31 January 2015 - 12:29 PM

Al-Akhbar, Lebanon
Jan 29 2015

Armenia Faces Turkey over Genocide Denial Case

by: Rana Harbi


A long-running battle over a Turkish man's denial of the Armenian
genocide returned to the European Court of Human Rights on Wednesday.

A first-rate legal team, which included renowned human rights lawyers
Geoffrey Robertson and Amal Allamudin Clooney, as well as Armenia's
Prosecutor General Gevorg Kostanyan, represented Armenia at the
appeals hearing on the court's ruling in 2013 in favor of a Turkish
Armenian genocide denier, in a case that is known as Perinçek v.
Switzerland.

Dogu Perinçek, chairman of the Turkish Workers' Party, was convicted
eight years ago in Switzerland for describing the Armenian genocide of
1915 as an "international lie."

He says that was an attack on his freedom of speech and the ECHR
agreed with him in a December 2013 ruling.

The Swiss authorities have appealed the decision, and have the backing
of Armenia, which says 1.5 million people were killed by Turkey's
Ottoman rulers.

Clooney said the court's 2013 decision "cast doubt on the reality of
genocide that Armenian people suffered a century ago."

She also slammed Turkey for hypocrisy, saying: "This court knows very
well how disgraceful Turkey's record on freedom of expression is."

Using both diplomatic levers and its influential diaspora abroad,
Armenia has long sought to win the massacre's international
recognition as a genocide.

On April 24, marking the 99th anniversary of the genocide, Armenian
President Serzh Sarkisian accused Turkey of an "utter denial" in
failing to recognize World War I mass killings of Armenians in the
Ottoman Empire as a genocide.

"The Armenian Genocide... is alive as far as the successor of the
Ottoman Turkey continues its policy of utter denial," Sarkisian said
in a statement at the time.

Turkey rejects calls to recognize the killings as genocide, claiming
up to 500,000 Armenians died in fighting and of starvation after
Armenians sided with invading Russian troops. It alleges a comparable
number of Turks were also killed.

Lawyers for Perinçek and the Turkish government argue that the
Armenian genocide is not a matter of "general consensus" like the
Holocaust.

Perinçek "neither denied nor apologized for the massacres, nor did he
incite hatred against the Armenians," his lawyers argued, adding that
he only denied a "genocidal intent" on the part of the Ottoman
authorities who ruled Turkey at the time.

Turkey further argues that Perinçek's claims cannot possibly incite
hatred since there is no widespread hatred towards the Armenians.

The controversy continued outside court where some 600 Turkish
protesters had gathered, according to police, carrying Turkish flags
and portraits of the country's modern founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
The crowd cheered Perinçek when he emerged from the court.

Around 20 Armenians stood on the other side of the road with one
placard reading: "No to denial -- Europe must react."

More than 20 countries have so far officially recognized the massacres
as genocide.

Hollande Urges Turkey to 'Break Taboos' on Armenia Killings

Meanwhile, French President François Hollande called on Turkey to take
new steps towards the "truth" behind the mass killings of Armenians a
century ago, saying "it is time to break the taboos."

"The effort towards the truth must continue and I am convinced that
this centenary year will see new gestures, new steps on the road to
recognition," Hollande said at a dinner with Armenian groups in Paris.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan this month said he would
"actively" challenge a campaign to pressure Turkey to recognize the
massacres as genocide, though a year ago he offered an unprecedented
expression of condolences for the 1915-1916 killings.

Recalling Erdogan's stance last year, Hollande told members of
France's Armenian community, the biggest in the European Union, that
Ankara's position "cannot stop there."

"It is time to break the taboos and for the two nations, Armenia and
Turkey, to create a new beginning," he said.

Earlier in January, a poll revealed that only 9.1 percent of the Turks
questioned believed their government should recognize the mass
killings of Armenians as a genocide.

Four years into the Syrian civil war, Armenians of different
denominations -- Orthodox, Catholic, and Evangelical -- have received
their share of suffering, murder, kidnapping, and displacement because
of the conflict, just like the other Syrians.

The Syrian government consistently accused Turkey, a NATO member and
one of Washington's key allies in the region, of playing a major role
in fueling the armed crisis in Syria by opening its borders and
allowing free access to foreign jihadists into Syria.

Damascus has repeatedly accused Turkey of harboring, financing,
training, and arming militants since violence erupted in March 2011.

The Armenian community was not spared from the systematic targeting of
ethnic and religious minorities by jihadist forces, such as the St.
Kevork Church in Aleppo, the Armenian Catholic Church in Raqqa, among
many other churches, schools and institutions.

The attack has forced at least 2,000 ethnic Armenian civilians to seek
refuge in Latakia and other neighboring hills. This situation further
highlights the systematic targeting of Christian communities in the
region.


(Reuters, AFP, Al-Akhbar)
 



#52 Yervant1

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 09:31 AM

FRANCE MAY ENACT A LAW CRIMINALIZING THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE DENIAL

10:44, 02 Feb 2015
Siranush Ghazanchyan

Co-ordination Council of Armenian Organizations of France (CCAF)
Co-chairman Mourad Papazyan has said France may enact a law making
denial of the rmenian genocide a crime if the European Court of Human
Rights (ECtHR) finds in favor of Switzerland in the appeal of the
case of Dogu Perincek v. Switzerland.

The issue in the case was if calling the declaration of the mass
killings of Armenians during Ottoman rule in 1915 a genocide "an
international lie," as Perincek did, can constitute a criminal offense
in Switzerland.

Speaking to Today's Zaman, Papazyan also said the European court's
expected decision in favor of Switzerland will pave the way toward
punishing the denial of the 1915 events being genocide, as it is
characterized by Armenians around the world.

"We will first wait for the decision of the ECtHR. If the court's
decision is positive, a law will be enacted in France prohibiting
the denial of the Armenian genocide," Papazyan said, adding that he
believes the ECtHR will decide in favor of Switzerland, which is of
the same view as Armenia regarding the proceedings.

Recalling French President Francois Hollande's statement saying a
year ago in the Armenian capital of Yerevan that he will push for
a new law that will make it a crime to deny the 1915 killings of
Armenians was genocide, Papazyan said the Armenian community trusts
the promise of the French president, as Hollande is quite sensitive
about both Armenians and the Turkish-Armenian issue.

Despite the strong opposition of Turkey to recognition of the 1915
killings as genocide last year in Yerevan, Hollande called on the
country to recognize the "Armenian genocide" and said the "recognition
of genocide will unite, not divide."

Hollande said he would bring the "genocide denial" bill to the
national agenda, claiming that the denial is not an action, but an
insult against "victims and reality." He said there are efforts around
the world to recognize the mass killings as genocide and they cannot
allow denial.

President Hollande is scheduled to pay a visit to Yerevan on April
24 to honor the Armenian victims of the 1915 killings.

http://www.armradio....enocide-denial/
 



#53 Yervant1

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Posted 04 February 2015 - 10:03 AM

THE TEST THE ECTHR FACES

02.03.2015 09:54NEWS

Human rights activist and lawyer Eren Keskin has assessed the Perincek
v. Switzerland case heard at the European Court of Human Rights in
a column piece for the Ozgur Gundem newspaper. Keskin states that
Perincek's words "cannot be construed within the scope of the freedom
of expression", and adds that they "clearly amount to an abetment
to crime."

Eren Keskin's column piece published in Ozgur Gundem is below:

"Last week, the first hearing of an important case was held at the
European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), widely referred to as "the
Dogu Perincek case". We, the Human Rights Association, the Truth
Justice Memory Centre, and the Toronto-based International Institute
for Genocide & Human Rights Studies jointly submitted an application
to intervene in the case. Our application was accepted by the ECtHR

In other words, we took a stand against Dogu Perincek in this lawsuit.

As a person who for many years has repeatedly been tried for her
thoughts, and has served prison sentences, it is my opinion that Dogu
Perincek's words cannot be construed within the scope of freedom of
expression, and should clearly be considered an abetment to crime.

It was as a result of this abetment that Hrant Dink, Father Santoro
and Sevag Å~^ahin Balıkcı were massacred.

Let us recall how Dogu Perincek and his like acted during the Hrant
Dink and Orhan Pamuk cases!

Taking the name of Talat, architect and implementer of the 1915
Genocide, they shamelessly declared themselves 'The Talat Pasha
Committee'. And it was that committee that made calls for violence
outside court hearings. And they gave cause to new deaths, and
new crimes.

The day the hearing was held in Strasbourg, we, the Human Rights
Association and the Truth Justice Memory Centre, held a press meeting.

Unfortunately, the press did not dedicate much space to our words.

Today, I would like to present some excerpts from the press release
we issued that day.

'The denial of the Armenian Genocide, in our land, provokes racist
hatred and encourages anti-Armenian sections of society. Neither
the ECtHR decision, nor the file we submitted as a third party are
about the historical reality, or the exact judicial definition of the
1915-1917 massacres. The issue here is that Perincek's statements beget
racism and discrimination. In this respect, the lawsuit that will be
heard on appeal at the Grand Chamber, is of special significance since
for the first time, discrimination caused by denial, trivialisation or
legitimisation will be addressed in a context other than the Holocaust.

The ECtHR decision in favour of Perincek restricted the scope of denial
and discrimination to its impact upon Armenians in Switzerland, and
overlooked the direct impact of Perincek's words upon the Armenians
in Turkey.

The Talat Pasha Committee, of which Dogu Perincek is also a member,
carries out its activities in Turkey. And its intended audience is
the society of Turkey. Perincek's statement that those who lend an
ear to the voice of Armenians will not be permitted, and that they
will be put in their place even if they are at the ends of the earth,
was aimed at the society of Turkey.

Denial does not simply mean to say 'The Genocide did not take place'.

Denial means the legitimisation of the irredeemable, irrevocable
destruction of an entire people.

In brief, the denial of the Genocide, in Turkey, is the most
significant and main cause, facilitated by the State, for Armenians
to still live under threat.

Denial leads to hatred, and hatred kills.

While we, as human rights defenders, expressed our views in this way,
the State and political parties took the side of Dogu Perincek with
all their might.

In their group photograph at the hearing, it was as if Dogu Perincek,
the CHP members of parliament, the AKP members of parliament and the
MHP members of parliament were saying 'We are the Genocide perpetrators
of Ä°ttihat'.

Now, the ECtHR faces a test. Its verdict will either clear the path
for racist hatred, or draw a line.

It is an important test!'"

http://www.agos.com....the-ecthr-faces
 



#54 Yervant1

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Posted 10 February 2015 - 11:19 AM

HOLOCAUST DENIAL PUNISHED, NOT ARMENIAN GENOCIDE?

IAGS (International Association of Genocide Scholars) considers
denial of Genocide perpetuation of it. On 23rd of January Human
Rights Association, Turkey, and the Center for Truth Justice Memory
held a press conference and issued a press release, announcing that
as an intervening party they will take part in the Perincek case of
Genocide denial. It is posted in Keghart.com for the record along
with Kamo Mayilian's and Nora Koloyan-Keuhnelian's articles. The
trial took place on January 28, 2015 as scheduled and it may take up
to six months for the release of the verdict.-Ed.

Press Release

On January 28, 2015, the lawsuit Dogu Perincek v. Switzerland will
begin retrial in the Grand Chamber, which acts in the capacity of
court of appeals for the European Court of Human Rights.

It is now common knowledge that in 2005, Dogu Perincek traveled to
Switzerland, which has officially recognized the Armenian Genocide and
passed a law criminalizing its denial, in order to issue declarations
in Bern and Lausanne where he impugned the Armenian Genocide as
a fabrication. In 2007, Perincek was found guilty of deliberately
violating national law and convicted by the court of Lausanne. Upon
Perincek's appeal, the European Court of Human Rights ruled in his
favor in 2008 and found that the court of Lausanne had violated the
freedom of expression principle enshrined in the European Convention
of Human Rights, article 10.

The Human Rights Association sent a letter to the Swiss Federal Office
of Justice in 2014, demonstrating in detail how the denial of the
Armenian Genocide incites hostility toward Armenians and imploring
Switzerland to appeal the ECHR decision. Switzerland's subsequent
appeal and request for retrial were accepted in June 2014.

The first hearing of the said retrial will take place on January
28, 2015.

The Human Rights Association from Turkey joined The Center for
Truth Justice Memory and the Toronto-based International Institute
for Genocide & Human Rights Studies to appeal to the ECHR in July
to present a Third Party Opinion File, i.e., to be accepted as
intervening party. The ECHR approved this request by the three human
rights organizations.

We have explained in this file that the denial of the Armenian
Genocide provokes ethnic hatred in Turkey and encourages anti-Armenian
elements. Neither the ECHR ruling and nor the file we have presented
as third party concerns itself with the historical reality of the
1915-1917 massacres or their precise legal definition. The crux of the
issue lies in the fact that Perincek's declarations are conducive to
racism and discrimination. In this sense, the retrial in the Grand
Chamber carries special significance as a precedent in addressing
denial, minimization, and justification in a context outside of
the Holocaust.

The ECHR decision had restricted denialism and discrimination to their
effect on Swiss Armenians and disregarded Perincek's leadership of
the Talat Pasha Committee, as well as the fact that his refutations
of the genocide as an international lie have direct bearing on the
Armenians of Turkey even if they were pronounced in Lausanne. We
have therefore argued in our file that Perincek's declarations do
not only concern the definition of events, but also commit the crime
of discrimination; that the ruling must take into account Perincek's
position as a prominent politician from Turkey, the head of the Labor
Party, and the leader of the Talat Pasha Committee--as well as that
Committee's objectives and operations.

Yes, the act that was found criminal according to the Swiss law
was committed on Swiss soil, but the Talat Pasha Committee and its
leaders, including Perincek, have been conducting operations in Turkey
and targeting Turkish society. The recipient of their message--that
those who listen to Armenians will be subject to intervention and
retribution, even if they are at the other ends of the world--was
Turkish society. The same Turkish society that is being targeted
by this message has been fueled by hostility toward Armenians and
other non-Muslim peoples for generations. Anti-Armenian sentiments
and thoughts have been exacerbated throughout Republican history
by the constant dogma, mass media dissemination and educational
indoctrination of the notion that the eradication of the Ottoman
Armenian population and civilization is a lie.

Denialism does not simply consist of declarations along the lines of
"no genocide has taken place." Denialism requires the justification of
the irreversible and inexpiable eradication of a people: The notion
that "it is Armenians who are responsible for the events," namely
that Armenians had deserved eradication, that they had "stabbed Turks
in the back" and collaborated with the enemy, has always been and is
still perpetually reiterated in classrooms, university conferences,
TV series and programs, and books.

Hostility toward Armenians is not confined to mere words but also
takes lives. In this context of discrimination and ethnic hatred,
Armenians were attacked and Hrant Dink, the founder and director of
Agos, was the victim of an assassination whose perpetrators have yet
to be brought to justice. Armenian private Sevag Å~^ahin Balıkcı
was shot dead in 2011 by another soldier in Batman, where he was on
military duty, specifically on the day of April 24, the universal
commemoration day marking the beginning of the Armenian Genocide.

Court proceedings have met with significant public distrust, while the
press has indicated that commanders pressured privates to testify that
the incident was "an accident." Furthermore, the "Hodjali Protests"
of February 27, 2012, which took place in the central Taksim square
and featured as a speaker the Minister of Internal Affairs, displayed
banners proclaiming "You Are All Armenians, You Are All Bastards."

Within the span of two months from 2012 to 2013, the Samatya district
of Istanbul, which is densely populated by Armenians, saw similar
and successive attacks on elderly Armenian women--among them the
murder victim Maritsa Kucuk, whose bones were smashed and entire
body relentlessly stabbed. And on February 23, 2014, banners saying
"Long Live Ogun Samasts, Damned be Hrant Dinks" were displayed,
unprohibited, in front of the newspaper Agos.

In sum, genocide denial is the chief, most fundamental basis for the
state-sanctioned threat to existence under which Armenians continue
to live in Turkey.

As two human rights associations that have witnessed first-hand and
up close the provocation of ethnic hatred by anti-Armenian acts and
declarations, we, the Human Rights Association and the Center for
Truth Justice Memory, consider it our natural duty, as per our raison
d'être and field of operation, to present our observations to the
European Court of Human Rights in order to contribute to the making
of a fair and just decision.

Finally, we insist yet again: Denial causes hatred and hatred kills.

We defend the inalienability of the right to live in safety, unafraid
of tomorrow, and hope that the European Court of Human Rights will,
in the name of the universal law of human rights, obstruct discourses
that incite acts in violation of this inalienable right.

Amal Clooney Takes on Armenian Case

Kamo Mailyan, Toronto, 14 January 2015

Amal Clooney, a prominent international and human rights expert,
George Clooney's wife, has taken on the protection of the Armenian
side in the "case of Dogu Perincek," The Telegraph reports.

Dogu Perincek, a representative of the Left-wing Turkish Workers'
Party, was found guilty by the Swiss court during a visit to
Switzerland in 2008 for denying the fact of the Armenian Genocide
1915, perpetrated by the government of Ottoman Empire with a plan
of exterminating the whole Armenian race (as it was later described
by New York Times). During his visit to Switzerland, Dogu Perincek
called the Armenian Genocide 1915 "an international lie" and was
fined by the Swiss court for denial.

Dogu Perincek appealed the Swiss court's decision to the European
Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which ruled that the Swiss court had
violated the right of free expression.

The ECHR's ruling is challenged by the Armenian party. The case will
be heard in Strasbourg by ECHR. The first hearing is scheduled on
January 28.

Amal Clooney will work in a team with Geoffrey Robertson, who
wrote a book called "An Inconvenient Genocide: Who Now Remembers
the Armenians?" Amal Clooney has been involved in high profile
international cases, some of which include representation of the
Wikileaks' founder Julian Assange, as well as Yulia Timoshenko
of Ukraine.

Among questions to be asked to the ECHR should be whether its decision
is not a dual standard. If the ECHR determines and reaffirms that the
Swiss Courts' decisions have limited the right of free expression,
this will result in a strong case law and precedent that can be
used to combat strict limitation on freedom of expression by the
Turkish government through its Article 301, which limits not only
recognition of the Armenian genocide by individuals inside Turkey but
has even strictly controlled public opinion in relation to this matter
(however, it cannot stop future criminalization and punishment for
genocide denial).

In fact, Dogu Perincek can be found guilty for perpetrating/an attempt
of genocide through denial. The Genocide Watch establishes that
the 8 stages of genocide, commonly adopted and used by scholars and
historians, include: 1. Classification (of culture as "them and us");
2. Symbolization (giving names to a national group such as the "Jews"
or "Gypsies"); 3. Dehumanization (when one group denies the humanity
of another); 4. Organization (planned by a party such as a state); 5.

Polarization (extremists drive the groups apart); 6. Preparation
(victims are identified based on their religious or ethnic identity);
7. Extermination (massacres start and turn into a mass killing legally
called a "genocide"); and 8. DENIAL (which is a stage that always
follows a genocide).

According to the classification above, Dogu Perincek committed a
genocide / genocidal act through denial.

Another precedent the ECHR shall take into account is the fact that
negating the Holocaust, a horrible crime against humanity and a
genocide that followed the first genocide of the 20th century (the
Armenian Genocide 1915) and took the lives of six million Jews, is a
punishable offense in many countries. The ECHR should be prepared to
answer the question what makes the Armenian case different. Is there
any step out of the eight steps of genocide described above that does
not exist in the Armenian case? Or, maybe because we are "ARMENIANS"?

Nowadays different pro-government groups in Turkey are discussing
the possibility of granting diplomatic immunity to Dogu Perincek,
obviously understanding that this is a case that they are going to
lose, and they will have to be prepared to protect their official.

Likewise, Turkey granted diplomatic immunity to Egemen Bagis, its
EU Minister, to protect from potential liability stemming out of an
investigation by Zurich prosecutors after genocide denial comments by
Egemen Bagis at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2012,
which were found as a violation by the anti-racism legislation of
Switzerland.

The two cases are very similar, and a question the ECHR should be
asked is how many more officials are going to be "saved" by Turkey
through giving diplomatic immunity after a crime/violation is made,
and whether it can be viewed as retrospective and be applied for the
time when the real violation/crime was made.

Clooney goes to court for Armenia

Nora Koloyan-Keuhnelian, Al-Ahram, Cairo, 5 February 2015

International human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin Clooney and UK
barrister Geoffrey Robertson appeared at the European Court of Human
Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg, France, last week. They were representing
Armenia in the century-old dispute between Armenia and Turkey over the
1915 genocide committed by the Ottoman Turks against the Armenians,
in which 1.5 million people died.

The case comes following an appeal by Switzerland to the ECHR after a
previous ruling that the right of the leader of the Turkish Workers
Party, Dogu Perincek, to express his views had been violated by a
Swiss court.

In 2007 Perincek was sentenced to four months in prison after saying
the Armenian Genocide was an "international lie" at a conference in
Lausanne in 2005. Denial of the genocide is against Swiss law.

In 2008 Perincek appealed to the ECHR, citing his right to freedom of
expression, and in December 2013 the ECHR found in Perincek's favour.

Turkey and Armenia then became parties to the case, and the appeal
against the 2013 decision began last week.

In her opening statement, Clooney said the judge's decision in the
2013 case was "simply wrong," but added that in bringing the appeal
Armenia did not want to prohibit free speech. "Armenia is not here
to argue against freedom of expression any more than Turkey is here
to defend it. This court knows very well how disgraceful Turkey's
record on freedom of expression is," she said.

As many observers have noted, Turkey's claim to defend free speech is
ironic at best. In December, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
arrested opposition journalists and accused them of "forming a
terrorist organisation" and "trying to seize control of the state."

Only last week, Turkish authorities arrested a former Miss Turkey
for "insulting" Erdogan by quoting him in a poem published on social
media. In September 2014, the US-based Human Rights Watch also said
that Erdogan and the ruling Turkish Justice and Development Party
were taking far-reaching steps to weaken the rule of law, control the
media and clamp down on critics and protesters, stating that these
"changes are really worrying."

Paparazzi who filled the courtroom for the appeal appeared to be
more interested in the fact that one of the two lawyers is the wife
of actor George Clooney than the case being heard.

Lawyers Robertson and Clooney atthe European Court of Human Rights
in Strasbourg, France

Aram Hamparian, executive director of the Armenian National Committee
of America (ANCA), told Al-Ahram Weekly that the media storm in no
way distracted from the importance of the case. "Armenians worldwide
welcome Amal Clooney and Geoffrey Robertson's compelling presentation
of the facts, the law and the morality of Armenia's case against the
denial of the Armenian Genocide," he said.

Their stature as international human rights lawyers will help focus
the world's attention on this still unpunished genocide, he said,
brining Turkey's denial campaign into the light of day and contributing
to the growing international consensus that there must be resolution
of the crime, Hamparian added.

Some observers say that the case may be understood to be about freedom
of expression and that the judges may again decide against Switzerland,
though this should in no way be seen as endorsing Turkey's views on
the genocide.

Others say that denying the genocide should be understood as a hate
crime under Swiss law in the same way that denying the Holocaust is
a punishable offence in many countries. One judge at the court said
that Perincek's case remains strong because it turns on freedom of
speech and not the genocide.

In his remarks to the court, Robertson described Perincek as a
"vexatious litigant pest" and he questioned why the court was "giving
comfort to genocide deniers."

"What is really worrying are the vast errors of Chamber 2, which we
urge the Grand Chamber to correct, in the fact that they promote
the idea that the Holocaust is the only real genocide ... it is
wrong to excuse or to minimise other mass murders on the grounds of
racist religions because they had fewer victims or different methods
of killing.

"What matters to Armenians, to Jews, to Bosnians and Cambodians, to
Rwandan Tutsis and today to Yazidis is not the manner of their death
or whether an international court has convicted the perpetrators,
but the fact that they were targeted as unfit to live because they
were Jews or Armenians or Yazidis.

"The reasoning in this judgement [in 2013] damages the vital human
rights cause of genocide prevention ... That there is any doubt
about the truth of the Armenian Genocide should not feature in its
[the court's] reasoning. It was not, as genocide deniers pretend,
a tragedy. It was a crime, an international crime of genocide."

In the past many observers, including British prime minister Winston
Churchill, described the events as the "Armenian Holocaust." Robertson
recently published a book titled An Inconvenient Genocide: Who
Now Remembers the Armenians? The book argues that the 1915 events
constituted a crime against humanity, known today as genocide.

Robertson will also be a speaker at an international conference
marking the centenary of the Armenian Genocide in New York in March.

Diaspora Armenians are organizing events across the world to mark the
centenary of the genocide in April. However, in what is being seen as
a cynical move, Erdogan last month sent invitations to more than 100
international figures, including Armenian President Serj Sarkissian,
asking them to participate in the centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli
which will be marked in Turkey on the same day as the genocide
centenary. The move is seen as an attempt to distract attention from
the centenary of the genocide, which Turkey continues to deny.

Amal Alamuddin Clooney, 37, is the daughter of a Lebanese family. Her
father is a Druze businessman who moved to London when Amal was a
child, after the outbreak of the Lebanese Civil War. She has previously
acted in other high-profile cases, including those involving former
Libyan intelligence chief Abdallah Al-Senussi and WikiLeaks founder
Julian Assange.

"The case of Dogu Perincek shows that Turkey's walls of denial are
crumbling and Ankara's obstruction of justice will be the next to
fall," Hamparian told the Weekly.

http://www.keghart.com/Perincek-Trial
 



#55 Yervant1

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Posted 12 March 2015 - 09:21 AM

PERINCEK LAUNCHES ARMENIAN GENOCIDE DENIAL CAMPAIGN IN LATIN AMERICA

19:10, 11 Mar 2015
Siranush Ghazanchyan

Turkish nationalist Dogu Perincek has left for Latin America to launch
an Armenian Genocide denial campaign.

Members of the Turkish delegation visited Mexico, where they met with
representatives of the country's main opposition party, Ermenihaber.am
reports, quoting Ulusal Kanal.

According to the report, the steps to be taken against the
international recognition of the Armenian Genocide were discussed.

The Turkish delegates will try to turn the conference to be organized
by the Mexican opposition party into a platform for denying the
Armenian Genocide.

http://www.armradio....-latin-america/



#56 Yervant1

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Posted 22 March 2015 - 09:13 AM

Perincek case is highly politicized, says Armenian Turkologist

13:24 * 21.03.15


The European Court of Human Rights' final ruling in the Perincek vs
Switzerland case is likely to be highly politicized, according to an
Armenian Turkologist.

"The Perincek case is originally more politicized and belongs more to
the political rather the the legal domain," Ruben Melkonyan, the dean
of the Yerevan State University's Oriental Studies Department, told
Tert.am, commenting on possible outcomes.

The Turkologist noted that the recent hearing saw prominent Turkish
political figures, including the opposition leader, the EU minister,
as well as the son of Turrkey's third president, present in the
courtroom to follow the proceeding. "So the entire Turkish state backs
[him] with all possible methods. And that's being openly declared by
the Turkish parliament speaker. So I don't think we can expect an
unbiased ruling against the backdrop of all that, given especially
that there are 17 judges each of whom will naturally face the
influence of the leverages by the Turkish state," he explained.

Melkonyan citied Armenia's integration into the Russia-led Eurasian
Economic Union as another factor not favorable for Armenia. He noted
that the court, which is not pro-Russian in nature, may not act in
favor of Armenia. "Therefore, I think, we can expect a political
decision. And we do not have to attach too much importance to the case
because despite its indirect connection to the Genocide, an in-depth
and legal [analysis] has to do with freedom of speech and law, where
the Armenian Genocide is not the subject matter. "

Asked whether a pro-Turkish ruling will give Turkey a trump card in
light of the pan-Armenian campaign over the Genocide centennial,
Melkonyan said he thinks the very fact of the tragic anniversary makes
the case a central point on Turkey's political agenda. "In the context
of the [Genocide] centennial, the Perincek case appears the most
important episode, so that's why the Turkish state has now centralized
all its leverages on the problem. That trial is more important for
them in terms of propaganda than the 100th anniversary of the Battle
of Dardanelles. So should a pro-Turkish ruling be passed, I am sure
that it will mark a key point in the Turkish propaganda. "

The Turkologist nonetheless said he expects strong efforts by the
Armenian diaspora to counteract to Turkey. "I see its considerably
good involvement in the same case's frameworks, as well as in the
steps towards backing Armenia and the universal truth. So I believe
that those steps too, will have a certain influence," he added.

http://www.tert.am/e...ek-ECHR/1620824
 



#57 Yervant1

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Posted 01 April 2015 - 10:47 AM

ARMENIAN GENOCIDE MONUMENT IN LYON DESECRETED

16:03, 31 Mar 2015
Siranush Ghazanchyan

The Armenian Genocide monument located in the Antonen Ponse Square
adjacent to Lyon's most famous Belcour Square has been desecrated
once again. There are curse words and offensive remarks inscribed on
the monument, Nouvelles d'Armenie reports.

The opening of the monument in April 2006 was protested by denialist
groups, apparently sponsored by Turks. The protesters then clashed
with representatives of the movement in Lyon, who were filled with
indignation over the slogans that were heard during the protest. Along
with the protest, offensive remarks were inscribed on the monument.

Further desecration ahead of the Armenian Genocide Centennial
commemoration ceremonies goes to show that the criminals intend
to continue due to lack of a law criminalizing denial, Nouvelles
d'Armenie writes.


http://www.armradio....yon-desecreted/



#58 Yervant1

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Posted 22 May 2015 - 09:33 AM

POPE'S GENOCIDE REMARKS IMPORTANT FROM LEGAL POINT OF VIEW: ARMENIA'S PROSECUTOR GENERAL

18:51, 21 May 2015
Siranush Ghazanchyan

The European Court of Human Rights will announce the final verdict
on Perincek vs. Switzerland case in 5-6 months, Armenian Prosecutor
General Gevorg Kostanyan said at the National Assembly today.

"The European Court of Human Rights is not the body that will assert
whether there has been an Armenian Genocide or not," he added.

The Prosecutor General attached importance to the historic Mass in the
Vatican. He said the Pope's statements on the Armenian Genocide come
to prove once again the Armenian Genocide is properly acknowledged
and perceived internationally. He added that from the point of view
of international law this was more important than the fact that one
more country recognized the Armenian Genocide.

http://www.armradio....ecutor-general/



#59 Yervant1

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 08:02 AM

PERINCEK V. SWITZERLAND: EUROPEAN COURT TO DELIVER JUDGMENT OCTOBER 15

16:26, 12 Oct 2015
Siranush Ghazanchyan

The European Court of Human Rights will be delivering a Grand Chamber
judgment in the case of Perincek v. Switzerland (application no.

27510/08) at a public hearing on Thursday 15 October 2015 at 11.45
a.m. in the Human Rights Building, Strasbourg, according to the
Court's website.

The case concerns the criminal conviction of a Turkish politician
for publicly expressing the view, in Switzerland, that the mass
deportations and massacres suffered by the Armenians in the Ottoman
Empire in 1915 and the following years had not amounted to genocide.

The applicant, Dogu Perincek, is a Turkish national who was born in
1942 and lives in Ankara (Turkey). He is a doctor of laws and chairman
of the Turkish Workers' Party. In 2005 Mr Perincek participated
in three public events in Switzerland, in the course of which he
expressed the view that the mass deportations and massacres suffered
by the Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire from 1915 onwards had
not amounted to genocide. The Switzerland-Armenia Association lodged
a criminal complaint against Mr Perincek on account of the statement
made at the first event.

The investigation was later expanded to cover the two other statements
as well. On 9 March 2007 the Lausanne District Police Court found him
guilty of the offence under Article 261 bis § 4 of the Swiss Criminal
Code, holding in particular that his motives appeared to be racist
and nationalistic and that his statements did not contribute to the
historical debate. The court ordered him to pay 90 day-fines of 100
Swiss francs each, suspended for two years, a fine of 3,000 Swiss
francs, which could be replaced by 30 days imprisonment, and 1,000
Swiss francs in compensation to the Switzerland-Armenia Association
for non-pecuniary damage.

Mr Perincek appealed against the judgment, seeking to have it set aside
and additional investigative measures taken to establish the state of
research and the positions of historians on the events of 1915 and the
following years. The Criminal Cassation Division of the Vaud Cantonal
Court dismissed the appeal on 13 June 2007. The Federal Court dismissed
a further appeal by Mr Perincek in a judgment of 12 December 2007. Mr
Perincek complains that his criminal conviction and punishment for
having publicly stated that there had not been an Armenian genocide
was in breach of his right to freedom of expression under Article
10. He also complains, relying on Article 7 (no punishment without
law), that the wording of Article 261 bis § 4 of the Swiss Criminal
Code is too vague.

The application was lodged with the European Court of Human Rights on
10 June 2008. In a judgment of 17 December 2013 a Chamber of the Court
held, by five votes to two, that there had been a violation of Article
10 of the Convention. The Swiss Government requested that the case be
referred to the Grand Chamber under Article 43 (referral to the Grand
Chamber), and on 2 June 2014 the panel of the Grand Chamber accepted
that request. A Grand Chamber hearing was held on 28 January 2015. In
the Grand Chamber proceedings, third-party comments were received from
the Turkish Government, who had exercised their right to intervene
in the case (Article 36 § 1 of the Convention). Third-party comments
were also received from the Armenian and French Governments, who had
been given leave to intervene in the written procedure. The Armenian
Government were in addition given leave to take part in the hearing.

Armenia was represented by human rights lawyers Amal Clooney and
Geoffrey Robertson and Armenia's Prosecutor General Gevorg Kostanyan.

http://www.armradio....ent-october-15/
 



#60 Yervant1

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Posted 13 October 2015 - 10:15 AM

ARMENIA EXPECTS ECHR TO DELIVER FAIR JUDGMENT IN CASE OF PERINCEK V. SWITZERLAND

14:34 13/10/2015 Â" COMMENTS

A delegation led by Armenia's Prosecutor General, Plenipotentiary
Representative of the Armenian Government to the European Court
of Human Rights (ECHR) Gevorg Kostanyan went on a working visit to
Strasbourg, the press office of the Office of Armenian Prosecutor
General reported.

ECHR will be delivering a Grand Chamber judgment in the case
of Perincek v. Switzerland (application no. 27510/08) at a public
hearing on Thursday 15 October 2015 at 11.45 a.m. in the Human Rights
Building, Strasbourg. The Republic of Armenia is involved in the case
as a third party.

"The involvement of the Republic of Armenia in the case is due to the
fact that the ECHR said that it does not have to examine the legal
wording of the Armenian Genocide and therefore it will not consider
substantive issues related to the crimes committed against Armenians
in the Ottoman Empire in 1915, but it nevertheless addressed the
historical fact of the Armenian Genocide in its judgment and made
evaluations unacceptable to the Armenian side. The judgment also
contains a number of contradictory opinions.

Under such conditions the Perincek case went beyond the scope of Swiss
criminal law and the decision on conventional conformity and concerned
the Armenian people. For that reason Armenia became involved as a third
party in the case so as to be able to inform ECHR about the position
of the Armenian people on the case and some wordings of the court.

As a third party, the Republic of Armenia expects ECHR to deliver
a fair judgment that will not have wordings that could call into
question the fact of the Armenian Genocide in a historical, legal or
any other context.

The aim is to prevent a judgment of ECHR from becoming a tool in the
hands of those who deny the Armenian Genocide or who will attempt to
use the judgment for their amoral purposes," Armenian Prosecutor's
Office said in a statement.

A Grand Chamber hearing of the case of Perincek v. Switzerland was held
in ECHR on 28 January 2015. Armenia was represented by Representative
of the Armenian Government to ECHR, Armenia's Prosecutor General
Gevorg Kostanyan, the founder of Doughty Street Chambers, lawyer
Geoffrey Robertson, and activist, lawyer Amal Clooney.

http://www.panorama..../10/13/genproc/
 






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