Armenian Genocide Marked in Athens

ATHENS (Athens News Agency)–Ruling PASOK deputy and former minister Theodoros Pangalos on Sunday expressed dissatisfaction with the level of implementation by Turkey of the requiremen’s set out by the EU at its Helsinki summit in December 1999 for the neighboring country’s future accession to the Union–after Greece lifted its reservations on upgrading Turkey to candidate country’ status.

Speaking at an event organized by the Armenian National Committee of Greece to mark the 86th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide–Pangalos said that Greece "did something that no other European country has done: It advanced–without getting anything in return–the upgrading of EU relations with a country with which it has differences from the past".

Citing the examples of the disputes between Argentina and Britain–and Slovenia and Italy–which resulted favorably for Britain and Italy when Argentina and Slovenia moved to upgrade their relations with the EU–Pangalos said that Greece was the only country that did not gain anything from the declaration of Turkey as a candidate country.

"I supported the move at the time–but on the condition that an EU-wide campaign would begin for Turkey’s implementation of the Helsinki decisions," the former foreign minister said. "But two years have passed since Helsinki–and in that time a defamation campaign has been intensified world-wide against the Armenian people.

Pangalos cited documen’s proving that the Armenian Genocide had taken place–and said the present Turkish leadership was a "continuation" of the Kemal regime–since " Ecevit and Cem share the same ideas and aspirations" with the Kemal regime.

Pangalos predicted that Turkey would go through "hard times" in order to proceed on the path of democratization and progress. "We–here–are all in solidarity with the Turkish people and all those dying in the white cells," Pangalos added.

Addressing the same event–parliament president Apostolos Kaklaman’s said that "we do not demand revenge–but an apology from present-day Turkey–that it clear up its accounts with history in the name of human dignity. The concession should concern both the Armenian Genocide–and the Turkish occupation of northern Cyprus.

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