Sarkisian Issues Statement on Genocide Anniversary

Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian


YEREVAN—Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian released a statement on Wednesday, one day ahead of April 24th commemorations of what will be the 99th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, paying his respects to the memories of those who perished and calling on Turkey to face the truth about a dark chapter of its history. Below is the full text of the statement.

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Dear compatriots,

Today we bow our heads to the memory of the innocent victims of the Armenian Genocide. One and a half million Armenians fell victim to a crime against humanity for which no human language had yet coined a term. One and a half million people were massacred simply because they were Armenians. The crime prepared meticulously and executed systematically pursued a simple goal: to take possession of the native lands and the possessions of the ancient and storied people living there. In their pursuit, the Ottoman Turks committed a monstrous crime, seeking to annihilate the Armenian people once and for all.

Today, nearly a hundred years after the Genocide, it is obvious the trauma inflicted upon our people by an unthinkable atrocity we were never prepared for. Until now, all Armenians dispersed throughout the world and all their generations are closely familiar with outcome of the Genocide. Despite this truth, however, the reality is that we have rebuilt a state from the remains of the Armenian homeland and today, in contrast to the past, we are more aware of and more prepared for the dangers we may face. Nowhere in the world is as safe for an Armenian as in her homeland, under the auspices of her own people’s state.

Dear compatriots,

The 24th of April is just a symbolic date: it is clear that the Armenian Genocide was not initiated and put an end in one day. Moreover, the Genocide continues as long as the successors of Ottoman Turkey continue their policy of categorical denial. We are convinced that the denial of a crime constitutes the direct continuation of that very crime. Only recognition and condemnation can prevent the repetition of such crimes in the future; crime that, unfortunately, have been repeated numerous times since 1915.

Today, we stand on the brink of the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. This is an opportunity for Turkey to repent and to face history openly and honestly if she wishes to relieve her future generations from this heavy burden.

Honoring the memory of the innocent victims, we remember all those Turks and Turkish families who lent a helping hand to their Armenian neighbors and friends facing execution, and who helped countless children escape from the clutches of bloody murder. God bless the memories of those who gave many of our ancestors a helping hand by risking even their and their families’ lives. Every society, including Turks, should be proud of their ancestors who rescued lives and stood up against the genocide of a people. We remember this.

We express our gratitude to all the countries and peoples who granted asylum to our compatriots having had a narrow escape from the Genocide. The Armenian people will remember this forever. Our sisters and brothers have strived to show their gratitude for decades by becoming devoted citizens of those hospitable countries.

Today, the Armenians of Syria face immense trouble. This is our open wound and the issue of primary concern to us. We are doing our best to re-establish peace for the Syrian people and our compatriots in Syria.

Dear compatriots,

We are approaching the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide with our heads held high and hopes for the future, with a state, whose name is the Republic of Armenia. It is the homeland of the entire Armenian people, who, despite decades-old illegal blockades and a “neither war nor peace” reality, continue to make progress.

The year 2015 should convey a strong message to Turkey. Its attitude toward Armenia can no longer be measured by words because the time is here for clear steps: the opening of the closed borders and the establishment of normal relations. Our position on the Armenian-Turkish protocols has not changed and the idea of “reasonable terms” is becoming more urgent than ever.

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6 Comments

  1. Lus said:

    Only had we had more Armenians like Mr Sarkissian, we wouldn’t have this dark page in our history. Mr President you are a true diplomat in the noble sense of the term! Thank you. May God bless you! Armenians shall never forget your wisdom and service…

  2. GB said:

    Well Mr. President for sure Turks are willing to play another political game like previous disastrous protocols, in order to cover up the truth of Armenian Genocide. Make sure you and your administrators exercise the RIGHTS of Armenian Nation in this corrupted political world!

  3. Berge Jololian said:

    Genocide Acknowledgment without Accountability is hollow and meaningless, and worse than denial.

    Accountability is what matters: land, reparation and restitution.

    Artsakh is land. Nakhichevan is land. Ararat is land. Ani is land. Kars is land.

  4. Mirijan Michael Kochian said:

    I am very proud of our Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian and his recently released statement on Armenian Genocide has the right tone and content and it is aimed at the Turkish Government and leaders of present Turkey to openly acknowledge what has happened in 1915 as the Armenian Genocide. I believe in good moral values in life, and our approach is to work with our allies and neighbors and build better relationship with them and build better further for our country and for our people. We are here by asking from the leadership of Turkish Government and Turkish PM to acknowledge the 1915 event as Genocide of Armenians. We are waiting time but we will never refrain from asking the Turkish Government and their leadership to start building cooperative relationship and open borders with Republic of Armenia.

    • Norin Radd said:

      Hannibal, exactly who are you directing that comment to? Please identify who your “pampusht” would be reaching.

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