Australia’s NSW Parliament Recognizes the Assyrian and Greek Genocides

The NSW parliament

Reaffirms recognition of the Armenian Genocide

The Parliament of New South Wales, Australia, passed a motion recognizing the Assyrian and Greek Genocides and reaffirming the Armenian Genocide.

The motion introduced the The Hon. Rev. Fred Nile was passed unanimously on Wednesday, reported the Armenian National Committee of Australia reports.

The motion reads as follows:

Whereas the NSW Parliament passed a motion in 1997 recognising and condemning the Genocide of the Armenians, this House recognises that Assyrians and Greeks were subjected to qualitatively similar genocides by the then Ottoman Government between 1914 — 1923: and

(a) joins the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks communities of New South Wales in honouring the memory of the innocent men, women and children who fell victim to the first modern genocides;

(b) condemns the genocides of the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks, and all other acts of genocide as the ultimate act of intolerance;

(c) recognises the importance of remembering and learning from such dark chapters in human history to ensure that such crimes against humanity are not allowed to be repeated;

(d) condemns and prevents all attempts to use the passage of time to deny or distort the historical truth of the genocides of the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks, and other acts of genocide;

(e) recalls the testimonies of ANZAC prisoners-of-war and other servicemen who were witness to the genocides of the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks;

(f) recalls the testimonies of ANZAC servicemen who rescued Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks genocide survivors;

(g) acknowledges the significant humanitarian relief contribution made by the people of New South Wales to the victims and survivors of the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks; and

(h) calls on the Commonwealth Government to condemn the genocides of the Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks.

Rev The Hon. Fred Nile, in his Adjournment Speech said:

Over the years, many members of the Parliament — both in this chamber and in the Legislative Council — have risen to address the issue of recognition of the Assyrian, Armenian and Greeks Genocides. Indeed, it was the Parliament of New South Wales that led the way on this issue, adopting a motion of recognition on the Armenian Genocide in 1997. I rise today to urge we complete the efforts, adopting a motion of recognition on the Assyrian and Greeks Genocides. In remembering these events, we do not seek to apportion blame. This is a matter of history, and history must neither be erased nor forgotten. We must remember and speak the truth.

“The truth of the genocide – the truth of what happened to the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek peoples – is in the records of our own Australian servicemen. We should remember and learn from such dark chapters in human history. What was the essence of the motivation behind these massacres and deportations? It was hatred – hatred in the form of racism. We need to remember the depths to which humanity can sink if we allow racism and extreme nationalism to take grip.  I repeat, in remembering these events, we do not seek to apportion blame. This is a matter of history, and history must neither be erased nor forgotten. We must remember and speak the truth,” he said.

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5 Comments

  1. Zeki said:

    Three salient features about this article:

    1) Turkey is not mentioned anywhere in the resolutions.
    2) It states….”I repeat, in remembering these events, we do not seek to apportion blame.” Draw your own conclusions with that one….
    3) The Parliament of New South Wales represents is merely a State government (as in territory or regional). According to the Australian Constitution it has now power to deal in Foreign Affairs, which is the responsibility of the Federal Australian Government. In essence, this is merely a declarative declaration with no real force of authority.

  2. LordAram said:

    paragraph 1: “similar genocides by the then Ottoman Government between 1914 — 1923″

    You’re right Zeki. The motion is clearly referring to the Ottoman Government of modern day Tahiti rather than modern day Turkey.

  3. F Sarguis said:

    As usual, there is loss of perspective. Please note that “Australia’s NSW Parliament” is different from the country of Australia. NSW, or New South Wales, is only one of the provinces or states which makes up Australia. The reality is that the Parliament of Australia has never adopted such a resolution.

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