Germany Cancels Genocide Commemoration Concert in Istanbul

The Dresden Symphony Orchestra performing "Aghet," dedicated to the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. (Photo: Markus Rind)
The Dresden Symphony Orchestra performing "Aghet," dedicated to the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. (Photo: Markus Rind)

The Dresden Symphony Orchestra performing “Aghet,” dedicated to the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. (Photo: Markus Rind)

BERLIN (Reuters)—The German Foreign Ministry has cancelled a long-planned concert by the Dresden Sinfoniker orchestra in Istanbul on November 13 that was to commemorate the 1915 massacre of Armenians after protests by Ankara, orchestra director Markus Rindt said on Wednesday.

The ministry notified the orchestra that the German consulate in Istanbul, where the performance called “Aghet,” or “catastrophe” in English, was to have taken place, would not be available on November 13, Rindt said. The concert premiered in Berlin in November.

“It’s definitely been cancelled. They said they wanted to reschedule at a better time, but when would that be? This has been planned for years,” Rindt said.

Turkey, angered by the German parliament’s decision to brand the 1915 massacre of Armenians by Ottoman forces a genocide, had protested the use of European Union funding to support the performance, and earlier this month withdrew from the EU’s Creative Europe Program that was funding the project.

The Dresden Symphony performance includes musicians from Turkey, Armenia, Germany and members of the No Borders Orchestra, which is comprised of musicians from the former Yugoslavia. Additional performances are planned in Belgrade on November 5 and in Yerevan, Armenia on November 10.

Ties between Germany and Turkey remain strained over the Armenian Genocide resolution and Ankara’s frustration about what it sees as Germany’s half-hearted expressions of solidarity after the July 15 attempted military coup in Turkey.

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3 Comments

  1. Raffi said:

    Erdogan is Great, he’s got the balls of the western world in his hands and is squeezing to the maximum.

  2. Vahe said:

    ITS SO INTERESTING THAT INSTEAD OF US ARMENIANS BEING UPSET, TURKS AND TURKISH GOVERNMENT IS UPSET… IF THE SITUATION WAS THE OTHER WAY AROUND NO CHRISTIAN WOULD HAVE HAD A HEAD ATTACHED TO THEIR BODY BY NOW STARING WITH ARMENIANS IN TURKEY !! THE LORD ABOVE IS NEAR TO RETURN AND YOU SAVAGE TURKISH MURDERERS HAVE NO WAY TO ASK FOR FORGIVENESS THIS TIME AROUND, HE IS COMING BACK TO JUDGE !! BIBLICALLY 2017 WILL NOT BE A CALM AND PEACEFUL YEAR !! AND TURKS HAVE ALREADY BEEN ENGAGED WITH WAR, SO TO WORLD CITIZENS : JUST SIT TIGHT AND WATCH !!
    GOD BLESS ALL ARMENIANS and ALL SUPPORTERS OF ARMENIAN CAUSE in the WORLD !
    Vahe’ Gharibian

  3. John K said:

    Why isntabul? Lets think bigger. It should be Paris or Tel Aviv. Thanks guys, we make a good pawn for bullshit games.

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