Turkey condemns 'Armenian genocide' resolution in U.S. Senate

ANKARA Fri Apr 11, 2014 9:42am EDT

Related Topics

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey condemned on Friday a U.S. Senate committee resolution branding the massacre of Armenians by Ottoman forces during World War One as genocide and warned Congress against taking steps that would harm Turkish-American ties.

The nature and scale of the killings remain highly contentious nearly a century after they took place. Turkey accepts that many Armenians died in partisan fighting beginning in 1915, but denies that up to 1.5 million were killed and that this constituted an act of genocide - a term used by many Western historians and foreign parliaments.

The resolution, adopted by the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on Thursday, called "to remember and observe the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide on April 24, 2014".

"The President should work toward an equitable, constructive, stable, and durable Armenian-Turkish relationship that includes the full acknowledgment by ... Turkey of the facts about the Armenian Genocide," the text of the resolution said.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry said the committee had acted beyond its position, competence and responsibility by adopting a "hastily and ineptly prepared" draft resolution.

"We reject this attempt at political exploitation that distorts history and law and we condemn those who led this prejudiced initiative," the ministry said in a statement.


It said Turks and Armenians could reach a "just memory of the tragic 1915 events" and that an earlier proposal from Ankara to set up a joint historical commission remained on the agenda.

Armenia did not take up the Turkish offer because it regards the genocide as an established historic fact and believes Turkey would use such a commission to press its own version of events.

"It is essential that the U.S. Congress engages in efforts aimed at strengthening our historic alliance ... instead of damaging Turkish-American bilateral ties," it added.

Last December, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu made Turkey's first high-level visit to Armenia in nearly five years, raising the prospect of a revival in peace efforts between the historical rivals which stalled in 2010.

The legacy of the killings has remained a major obstacle to reviving frozen relations between Turkey and its small former Soviet eastern neighbour.

Armenia accuses the Ottoman authorities at the time of systematically massacring large numbers of Armenians, then deporting many more, including women, children and the elderly and infirm in terrible conditions on so-called death marches.

The issue has long been a source of tension between Turkey and several Western countries, especially the United States and France, both home to large ethnic Armenian diasporas.

(Reporting by Tulay Karadeniz; Writing by Daren Butler. Editing by Gareth Jones)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (10)
ReadAboutIt wrote:
Modern Turkey was founded on Trespassing Genocidal campaigns Thievery and Lies of their actions. Turkey is responsible for the Armenian Greek and Assyrian Genocides in the early 20th century as they transformed from an imperialistic empire into a Country based on OTHER PEOPLES HOMELAND Turks homelands are as far east as Mongolia this is undeniable Historical Fact. Killing and uprooting these 3 nations and then transferring all of there wealth property belongings to the “Common Turk” creating an instant middle/upper class

Interestingly enough Pan Turkism preceded NAZIism and influenced some of those policies of the 3rd Reich since it seemed that the world could care less if you wipe out smaller Nations and minorities. Yet the ADL gives the Fascist Dictator Erdogan awards and has helped Turkey cover there stance of denial year after year in America. Well in Germany it is illegal to deny the Holocaust where as in Turkey it is illegal to acknowledge the 3 genocides Turks committed. There are surviving Turkish police reports of these “Common Turks” killing each other fighting over dead Armenian Greek Assyrian homes businesses belongings etc..

Turkey has an interesting approach Blame The Victims. Ask yourselves if Germany had this Blame the victim policy would they even be in existence today? If American Politicians took the stance of Germany denying and blaming the Jews would they have a job?

Apr 11, 2014 11:02am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jameschen wrote:
Mr. Big2Tex comment is full of hatred, which only makes me believe more that as the world leader, U.S. has to stand up for morality and humanity, recognizing Armenian genocide during WWI as ardently as recognizing Jewish genocide during WWII.

Apr 11, 2014 2:14pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Ozone1 wrote:
Turkey should be condemned by the world community the very foundation of modern Turkey is based on occupation and crimes against humanity, Turkey is a criminal country bottom line. Can you imagine if the German Government today simply denied the holocaust/genocides and even blamed the victims.
Turkey is currently supporting the terrorist mercenaries that are invading Syria along with the youtube twitter blocking once the Erdogan regime was exposed for scams and planning a false flag attack to invade Syria and NO Sanctions Blockades Embargo NATO air strikes nothing.
Turkey was literally created through invasion domination and then extermination/expelling the native populations so the The Young Turks could redistribute the wealth to their impoverished and uneducated turkish subjects thus instantly creating middle/upper class and gaining the loyalty of their Turkish subjects. Not to mention the German Brit and French reports about the fashion of the massacres is absolutely wicked and was much more brutal than the mass gassing or firing squads. A Turkish Professor Ughr Ungar gives a very detailed lecture on this subject and his research has brought him to the conclusion of Genocide. Also it should be noted that Turkey committed genocide on 3 historically native Nations during WW1 to create Turkey Armenian Greeks and Assyrians
Also Big2Tex is WAY OFF BASES if B2T had done thorough reading on this topic B2T would find that these “Liberals” and “Government” that B2T “Hates” are the ones who have been backing Turkish denial policy year after year.

Reuters Please do not be afraid to post my comment this can all be looked up and confirmed its not simple opinions

Apr 11, 2014 4:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.