Swedish Parliament Recognizes Armenian Genocide

*ANC-Europe commen’s Swedish Parliament for calling upon Turkey to end denial of the Armenian Genocide.

LYON–France–The Armenian National Committee of Europe (ANC-EU) Thursday commended the Swedish Parliament’s March 29th decision to recognize the Armenian Genocide. The resolution cites the importance of the Turkish government’s acknowledgment of this crime to regional stability in the Caucasus and Turkey’s own democratization efforts.

"The ANC of Europe thanks the Swedish Parliament–and in particular Parliamentarian Murat Artin–for adopting this principled resolution–which stands as a testament to the strong democratic tradition in Sweden. Sweden’s political leadership clearly understands that standing up for human rights takes precedence to passing economic interests. We urge the Assen Municipality in the Netherlands and the French Senate to follow Sweden’s example and properly recognize the Armenian Genocide."

The Swedish Parliament Wednesday adopted a report presented by the Committee on Foreign Affairs–stating that:

"An official statement and recognition of the Genocide of Armenia’s is important and necessary. In 1985–the UN and the European Parliament established the fact that the Ottoman Empire had committed genocide against the Armenian People in the beginning of the 20th century. The Committee on Foreign Affairs is of the opinion that the greater openness that Turkey presents–the stronger Turkey’s democratic identity will be. It is therefore important that unbiased–independent and international research on the genocide that affected the Armenian people will be accomplished."

It is of great importance that an increasing openness and historical understanding of the events of 1915 and thereafter can be developed. An improvement in this respect would also be of importance for the stability and the development in the whole Caucasus region."

"Unlike many other countries–the Turkish state does not recognize its crimes in the past–despite the fact that those are very well substantiated. A state which refuses to confront its past–its history–will get difficulties in coping with many problems of today," said Left Party Representative and Swedish Parliament member Murat Artin–who had introduced the Armenian Genocide resolution in fall of last year. The resolution received widespread support from a broad range of political parties including Artin’s Left party–Moderate Party–Christian Democratic Party–Center Party–Liberal party and Green Party.

Following its introduction–the Armenian community in Sweden worked tirelessly to gain its passage–through letters–phone calls and personal visitations with parliament members. Their efforts were bolstered by a worldwide Armenian National Committee of America campaign in February protesting the Armenian Government’s exclusion from the Swedish Holocaust Conference.

Commenting on the Swedish Parliament’s decision–Armenian Genocide Commemorative Committee of Sweden member Paul Minassian stated that "As a key member of important international organizations and political bodies in Europe–Sweden’s recognition of the Armenian Genocide serves as an example not only for its fellow Scandinavian countries–but for all international bodies to properly address the Armenian Genocide issue and recognize this crime against humanity."

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