France Genocide Bill Sponsor Receives Death Threats

French Parliament member Valerie Boyard casts her vote for the bill criminalizing the denial of the Armenian Gencoide

PARIS—“All Frenchmen of Armenian descent, who live in France have the right, to protect the memory of their ancestors slaughtered in 1915,” Valerie Boyer, the French member of parliament who drafted the bill criminalizing the denial of the Armenian Genocide, said on her Facebook page.

“This law aims to punish all those, who will question the fact of Genocide in French territory,” she explained.

“The Armenian genocide is recognized in Russia, Canada, Argentina, Italy, Sweden and even in Germany. Its denial is penalized in Switzerland. Yet, none of these states is being threatened in its diplomatic relations or business by Turkey,” Boyer wrote.

Meanwhile, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported Monday that Boyer has become a target of death threats and her Web site was hacked by Turks.

According to RFE/RL, Boyer told the BFMTV station that she, her children and parents have received “extremely grave” threats since then. “It’s totally paradoxical to be the author and the rapporteur of a text which speaks of human rights, human dignity, recognition and protection of the weak, and legislate under threat, be threatened by a foreign state and then be subjected to extremely grave personal threats,” she said.

“Death threats, threats of rape and threats of destruction, name-calling and insults. I find this very shocking.”

Boyer added that she will lodge a “complaint” with relevant French authorities but is undaunted by the threats. “This process can only strengthen us in both our beliefs and our resolve,” she said.

An adviser to French Interior Minister Claude Gueant told “Le Figaro” daily on Monday that the lawmaker and her family will be given a “discreet and effective protection for some time.” “The risk is not very high but we are not immune to a disequilibrium,” the official said.

Boyer, who is also the deputy head of French parliamentary caucus promoting ties with Armenia, spoke to the French news channel following a hacker attack on her website.

Visitors to www.valerie-boyer.fr were automatically redirected on Sunday to another website purportedly owned by a Turkish hacker group presenting itself as GrayHatz. It displayed the Turkish national flag and contained a message to the French government and France’s 500,000-strong Armenian community.

“You, the Diaspora Armenians, are such cowards that you don’t have guts to open up the Armenian archives and face the truth,” read the message posted in Turkish and English. “You, the French people, are so pitiful and pathetic that you are disregarding the truths for votes.”

The latter accusation was in tune with the Turkish government’s claims that Sarkozy engineered the bill’s passage to gain the support of French-Armenian voters in next year’s presidential election. Ankara has also denounced the legislation as an infringement of freedom of speech and academic debate.

“Freedom of speech and state propaganda are very different things,” Boyer told the French lower house last Thursday in a clear reference to Turkey’s vehement denial of a government policy to annihilate the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during World War One.

Boyer’s website was still disabled as of Monday evening, displaying a blank page. The UMP deputy’s Facebook page had scores of abusive comments from apparently Turkish users and messages of support from Armenians posted in recent days.

Under the adopted legislation, anyone in France publicly denying the Armenian genocide could face a year in jail and a fine of 45,000 euros ($58,000). In order to enter into force the law needs to be approved by the French Senate dominated by members of the opposition Socialist Party.

The Paris-based Armenews.com news service reported on Monday that the Senate majority leader, Francois Rebsamen, has demanded that the government include it on the Senate agenda “as soon as possible.”

“Even if this text carries electoral suspicions, nothing would be worse today than to bury it, thereby creating misunderstanding and disappointment of the Armenian community, having raised the indignation and anger of the Turkish community,” Rebsamen said in a statement.

Turkey recalled its ambassador in Paris and imposed political and military sanctions on France following the National Assembly vote. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to take more punitive steps if “the current [French] attitude is maintained.”

Turkish ambassadors from all over the world reportedly gathered in Ankara on Saturday to discuss ways of preventing more countries from taking similar measures ahead of the 100th anniversary of the start of the Armenian massacres in 1915.

“We should all be prepared also because we will face an intensive campaign from the Armenian diaspora in 2015,” the AFP news agency quoted an unnamed senior Turkish diplomat as saying on Friday. “And we should take history not from 1915 but from 1914 and explain what happened in the Balkans during that period,” said the diplomat.

While criticizing the French bill, some Turkish commentators have urged the authorities in Ankara to address the genocide issue more openly. “We have avoided any talk on 1915 for decades,” Mehmet Tezkan wrote in the “Milliyet” daily.

“One must be blind not to see what will happen four years later,” Tezkan said, according to AFP. “The genocide will be recognized by the entire world in 2015 on its 100th anniversary.”

Meanwhile, the leader of the Socialist majority in the French Senate reportedly demanded that President Nicolas Sarkozy’s government submit the bill to the upper house of parliament “as soon as possible.”

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22 Comments

  1. John Ahmaranian said:

    To those Turks who want “the Armenians to open their archieves”, I say, my self, my family and my nation are “an open archieve”. I lost 61 members from my large family in Turkey. I have photos from some of them. They are our archieves. They did not leave their homes. They were driven out and deported and killed.
    The Syrian desert is a big “museum” of archieves and files. Do the Turks want to “open the Armenian Archieves”? Every Armenian home has one of these. Who emptied 1200 Armenian churches and 600 schools? A hurricane? A turnado? An earthquake? The answer? The Turkish sword. As some of the Turkish newspapers suggested that “Armenians, be carefure, if the occasion is again presented we will do the same as we did in 1915″. To the Turks I say: Go and open these archieves.

  2. ara said:

    Well- what else would expect from such a group in Ankara with their agents elsewhere- they can nto bear thetruth- they could not and did not wipe out our history or evidence-they tried and try hard- they took our people and killed them-stole our girls and lands and destroyed our civilization to take over the areas they hold now-the ottomans and their ancestors are there-using our stone and ground to cultivate the earth (the little they can!)- well -we will get our lands and properties back-some day- oh yes- they are scared-how could a charlatan, a liar-a killers ancestors and such people ever live and feel clean-we will take back what they took-and get restitution- they can not keep living a lie-they will perish and we will prevail

  3. sam said:

    this is simply the turks are showing who they are introdusing them selfes in civillised europe i’m very glad they are doing it so the whole world will witness there real picture .

  4. Haik Azad said:

    It will be interesting to see if the wild turkeys will apply those cheap scare threats to the Israelis as well.

  5. James Kizirian said:

    Let no one find “shocking” the Turkish treats of rape and of destruction and of killings. That is their norm that is their characteristics, that is their “Turkishness”.
    Our Lord described the devil in this way. “The devil comes not but to kill and to destroy and to steal” Also our Lord said that the devil is a liar and the father of it. Now the Turks killed, destroyed and stole Armenians and Armenian properties, and to this day they lie that they did not commit genocide. Could their characteristics be that of the devil? You figure it out. It is so obvious and so clear, you be the judge.

  6. A. Hayrapetian said:

    Dear Valerie Boyer:
    Thank you very much for being so humane and brave. You did a great task which is to announce and support the justice. Denial Genocide, is a new Genocide. To prevent it, all countries have to follow France.

  7. Sylva-MD-Poetry said:

    Turks are threatening everyone…every where …
    From East till West
    For them genocide was a power to get rid of an ancient nation
    And confiscate their houses, their belongings … from gold till ink
    The honest person must teach them without fear
    Who are they … What they did …
    At the end all will sigh
    But the justice will remain and must shine
    From the bones of genocided innocent humans
    People come to live not to be killed by scavengers
    Who have no faith in humanity
    Thus, No God

    Sylva-MD-Poetry

    • Basil said:

      Horrible work as always, congratulations, it even seems to me that you are becoming worse!

  8. bayrakiniyakan said:

    if we listen to the Turks there is no genocide, and the French know that but its all about half million Armenian
    votes ! if its true than this is the picture , half million Armenians votes worth more than 6-7 hundred thousands of Turkish votes living in France , plus half million Armenian votes worth more then 13-14 billion dollars in trades ! lol
    lol lol i wounder how much Armenians votes worth in USA :) poor Turkish calculation … they the Turks can accept anything even to react like stupid and act like a clown by making the world laugh at them , but not the realty of the GENOCIDE !

  9. Alex Postallian said:

    Valerie Boyard,my hats off to you,a brave woman,antagonized by the turkish pigs(oink,oink)displaying their animalistic behavior,toward a cause of decency.Now I hope the world,and idealistic obama,how deep their hatred has become,being exposed as animals,as they are,perpetrating and lying about the Armenian Genocide.The next time you hear some idiot defending the turks,proof positive they are PAID STOOGES.

  10. Arman said:

    Death threats, rape threats, insults, slurs, threats of violence and destruction…….. all that’s just Turks being Turks….. not any cause for surprise.

  11. Puzant said:

    Thank you Valerie for your righteousness,may God protect you from evil and satanic turkey.
    I am son of a survivor.

  12. armenian kid said:

    i am wondering why turks get so involved, and then threaten to do it again, which shows they admit it ! but they tend to be stronger, simply coz of their numbers, political intelligence, army.
    i just hope very strongly that their threats dont happen, because they want to do it again, their brains dont know better, they are not smart, so all armenians, just make sure you are smart, be able to predict danger, dont let the genocide happen again, dont let ANY armenian die ever by the hands of turks, they have no way of life, they spend time getting angry at whatever they can, this is what they are, dont size up, just win !

  13. Gary_S said:

    I personally don’t care if this is passed or not. Just getting in the news is good enough for me. Giving Turks “an international blackeye” is good for me. Embarrassing them each time this comes up is good for me, in a way, i hope this isn’t passed so we can embarrass them again and again! They’ll keep on being embarrassed until they own up to their past!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    They also need to be embarrassed about having street names after these mass murderers in turkey!

  14. Ararat said:

    France should respond to such threats in kind by passing another bill criminalizing Turkish threats against its elected officials and that those caught will face the French Gillotine!

  15. Nairi said:

    Threats of death and rape? No surprise there… just go on trying to get into the EU with that obviously unchecked misogynistic culture.

  16. Basil said:

    “Turks are not capable or such horrible crimes, so stop saying there were killings or I will rape and kill you and rob your corpse afterwards. Then I will maybe rape it a bit and or loot your home.”

    Awesome.

  17. ArdeVast Atheian said:

    Valery Boyard, I’m so proud that she is so pretty, so alluring yet so inveterate and idealistic, a marvel of the very best of our Western Civilization.

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