Ankara Freezes Political, Military Relations with Paris

ANKARA (Combined Sources)–The Turkish government decided Friday to impose political and military sanctions in protest of the French National Assembly passage last week of a bill criminalizing the denial of the Armenian Genocide. Official Ankara decided to "freeze all bilateral relations in political and military fields." French companies will be deprived of the right to participate in tenders for Turkish defense and energy projects. The prohibition will first of all refer to projects related to the construction of nuclear power plants, each reportedly costing $5 billion. In addition, the government decided to remove French companies from the tenders announced by the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces, reported various press reports. Also on Friday, a Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman announced that Ankara will not recall its ambassador from Paris. Spokesman Namik Tan said the presence of diplomatic mission is essential to bring Turkey’s position to France’s attention. "We are adhere to calm and reasonable conduct and we will proceed with in this manner," Tan said, who remarked that the decision taken by the national assembly "wounded the souls of Turkish people and the mistake cannot be corrected by any other statemen’s." Meanwhile, to protest European countries, which have adopted Armenian Genocide recognition resolutions, Bahesehir University officials claim they have one million appeals to be sent to the European Court of Human Rights. "Unfortunately, political influence of other countries is felt in Turkey. That is why Turkey has to move its struggle to the judicial arena," said university dean Suleyh Batum. "Our state has a strong weapon: the European Treaty and the Court of Human Rights. The aspiration to prevent Turkey from expressing reaction on historical events that have not been deemed a genocide is a violation of human rights. We have prepared 1 million applications to the European Court of Human Rights over the decisions taken by the parliamen’s of Argentina, Russia, Switzerland and other states. We will garner signatures from people throughout the world and send them to the European Court of Human Rights," explained Batum.

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