Reps. Trott, Schiff Spearhead Bipartisan Genocide Prevention Resolution

Rep. David Trott (R-MI), the lead author of bipartisan anti-genocide legislation that seeks to apply the lessons of the Armenian Genocide to prevent modern-day atrocities, meeting with the director of The Promise, Oscar winner Terry George, and executive producer Eric Esrailian.
Rep. David Trott (R-MI), the lead author of bipartisan anti-genocide legislation that seeks to apply the lessons of the Armenian Genocide to prevent modern-day atrocities, meeting with the director of The Promise, Oscar winner Terry George, and executive producer Eric Esrailian.

Rep. David Trott (R-MI), the lead author of bipartisan anti-genocide legislation that seeks to apply the lessons of the Armenian Genocide to prevent modern-day atrocities, meeting with the director of The Promise, Oscar winner Terry George, and executive producer Eric Esrailian.

Legislation Aims to Apply Lessons of the Armenian Genocide in Preventing New Atrocities across the Middle East

WASHINGTON—U.S. Representatives David Trott (R-MI) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) on Wednesday joined with their Congressional Armenian Caucus colleagues in introducing a bipartisan anti-genocide resolution calling on the United States to apply the lessons of the Armenian Genocide in seeking to prevent modern day atrocities across the Middle East, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
This genocide prevention measure stresses that “proper commemoration and consistent condemnation of the Armenian Genocide will strengthen our international standing in preventing modern day genocides,” and, building upon the 2016 official U.S. designation of an ISIS genocide against Middle East minorities, specifically calls for the following: “[T]he United States, in seeking to prevent war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide against Christians, Yezidis, Muslims, Kurds, and other vulnerable religious and ethnic groups in the Middle East, should draw upon relevant lessons of the United States Government, civil society, and humanitarian response to the Armenian Genocide, Seyfo, and the broader genocidal campaign by the Ottoman Empire against Armenians, Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs, Greeks, Pontians and other Christians upon their biblical era homelands.”
“We thank Congressmen Trott and Schiff, their colleagues in the leadership of the Armenian Caucus, and all the original cosponsors of this resolution – including House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce and Ranking Member Engel – for their commitment to ensuring that the lessons of the U.S. response to the Armenian Genocide are applied to help prevent modern-day atrocities taking place across the Middle East,” said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian. “We look forward, in the coming days and weeks, to working with Members of Congress and all our coalition partners to see this genocide-prevention measure adopted by the U.S. House.”
In a letter inviting their House colleagues to co-sponsor this legislation, Reps. Trott and Schiff underscored that: “It is time for the United States government to officially take a stand for the truth, and against genocide denial.”
Genocide Prevention Resolution lead sponsor Rep. David Trott (R-MI) discussing community priorities with ANCA National leaders.

Genocide Prevention Resolution lead sponsor Rep. David Trott (R-MI) discussing community priorities with ANCA National leaders.

Joining Representatives Trott and Schiff as original cosponsors of the Genocide Prevention Resolution are House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY), Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Jackie Speier (D-CA), and David Valadao (R-CA) and Vice-Chair Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), as well as, Representatives Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Jim Costa (D-CA), Judy Chu (D-CA), Katherine Clark (D-MA), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), James McGovern (D-MA), and John Sarbanes (D-MD).

The launch of this legislation takes place on the same day as the special Capitol Hill viewing of “The Promise,” the Armenian Genocide-era epic, starring Oscar-winner Christian Bale and directed by Oscar-winner Terry George.  Parallel to this legislative initiative, the Armenian Caucus is collecting Congressional signatures on a letter urging President Trump to properly commemorate the Armenian Genocide, as a genocide, this April 24th.
In 2016, the House of Representatives and the Senate both passed legislation concluding that the atrocities perpetrated by ISIL against Christians, Yezidis, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq and Syria constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. Secretary Kerry subsequently stated that ISIS was “responsible for genocide against Yezidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims.”
The full text of the genocide prevention resolution is provided below:
****Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding past genocides, and for other purposes.
Whereas the lessons of past genocides should be applied to help prevent future war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide;
Whereas, on March 17, 2016, the Department of State declared that “Da’esh is responsible for genocide against groups in areas under its control, including Yezidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims”, and is “also responsible for crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing directed at these same groups and in some cases against Sunni Muslims and Kurds and other minorities”;
Whereas the House of Representatives, on March 14, 2016, passed H.Con.Res.75, which concluded that “the atrocities perpetrated by ISIL against Christians, Yezidis, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq and Syria constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide”;
Whereas the Senate, on July 7, 2016, passed S.Res.340, which concluded that “the atrocities perpetrated by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) against Christians, Yezidis, Shi’a, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq and Syria constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide”;
Whereas the United States has a proud record of protesting and providing relief to Armenian and other Christian survivors of the Ottoman Empire’s genocidal campaign;
Whereas President Woodrow Wilson encouraged the formation of the Near East Relief, chartered by an Act of Congress, which raised $116,000,000 (over $2,500,000,000 in 2017 dollars) between 1915 and 1930, the Senate adopted resolutions condemning these massacres, and United States diplomats organized and led protests of these crimes;
Whereas the United States is on record as having officially recognized the Armenian Genocide, in the United States Government’s May 28, 1951, written statement to the International Court of Justice regarding the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, through President Ronald Reagan’s April 22, 1981, Proclamation No. 4838, and by House Joint Resolution 148, adopted on April 8, 1975, and House Joint Resolution 247,  adopted on September 10, 1984; and
Whereas the proper commemoration and consistent condemnation of the Armenian Genocide will strengthen our international standing in preventing modern day genocides: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of  Representatives that the United States, in seeking to prevent war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide against Christians, Yezidis, Muslims, Kurds, and other vulnerable religious and ethnic groups in the Middle East, should draw upon relevant lessons of the United States Government, civil society, and humanitarian response to the Armenian Genocide, Seyfo, and the broader genocidal campaign by the Ottoman Empire against Armenians, Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs, Greeks, Pontians and other Christians upon their biblical era homelands.
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