Radanovich Presses Albright to Push for Turkish Recognition of Genocide

*Albright promises to provide official written response to concerns raised by Radanovich before key Congressional panel.

WASHINGTON–Representative George Radanovich (R-Calif.)–spoke Friday during a hearing of the US House International Relations Committee–pressed Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to answer for the Administration’s failure in bringing an end to Turkey’s denial of the Armenian Genocide–reported the Armenian National Committee of America.

Speaking to Secretary Albright–following her formal testimony before the panel–Congressman Radanovich asked the following question:

"Despite overwhelming evidence–including extensive documentation in our own archives–the Clinton Administration continues to back the Turkish government’s denial of the Armenian Genocide. The House of Representatives–in 1996–adopted an amendment I had introduced reducing our foreign aid to Turkey until they end their campaign to deny this crime against humanity. Yet the Administration–apparently out of a misguided notion of political expediency–continues to turn a blind eye to the first genocide of this century.

"This complicity in Turkey’s denial represents a serious moral failing on the part of the Administration and undermines our standing as an impartial mediator in the current conflicts in the region. What steps are you taking to ensure that the US government appropriately commemorates the Armenian Genocide and to urge the Turkish government to come to terms with this tragic chapter in its history?"

"We would like to thank Congressman Radanovich for pressing the Secretary of State to end the Administration’s complicity in Turkey’s denials of the Armenian Genocide–and–in the process–to help restore the State Department’s credibility as an honest broker in resolving the region’s conflicts," said Chris Hekimian–ANCA Government Affairs Director. "As the 1996 passage of the Radanovich-Bonior Amendment demonstrated–a strong bipartisan majority in the House of Representatives supports the adoption by the Administration of a principled policy respecting the historical record of the Armenian Genocide–and insisting that Turkey end its shameful campaign to deny this crime against humanity."

Rep. Radanovich–working with Democratic Whip David Bonior (D-MI)–introduced an amendment–adopted by the House of Representatives in June of 1996–to restrict US foreign aid to Turkey until it ends its campaign to deny the Genocide.

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