ANC of Canada Protests Foreign Minister’s Support for Genocide ‘Study’

OTTAWA–The Armenian National Committee of Canada protested Wednesday a statement by Canadian foreign minister Peter MacKay, who according to the Globe and Mail newspaper, has thrown Canada’s support behind a Turkish plan to convene an academic panel to study the veracity of the Armenian Genocide. "The Canadian government supports the Turkish government’s practical proposal to establish a joint committee comprised of Turkish and Armenian historians as well as historians from a third country to look into the events of 1915, and encourages the Government of Armenia to participate in this committee," said MacKay, according to a transcript provided to The Globe and Mail. An official speaking on behalf of MacKay confirmed that the minister supports the idea of a panel. "Minister MacKay endorses an independent study of the events of 1915, with third-party participation, in order for all possible facts to be looked at," Dan Dugas told the Globe and Mail. In response to the Globe and Mail article, the ANCC sent a protest letter to the Canadian Foreign Ministry a June 2005 letter to Turkey’s Prime Minister by the internationally-renowned Association of Genocide Scholars–the pre-eminent authority on genocides. "We represent the major body of scholars who study genocide in North America and Europe. We are concerned that in calling for an impartial study of the Armenian Genocide you may not be fully aware of the extent of the scholarly and intellectual record on the Armenian Genocide and how this event conforms to the definition of the United Nations Genocide Convention. We want to underscore that it is not just Armenia’s who are affirming the Armenian Genocide but it is the overwhelming opinion of scholars who study genocide," the scholars declared in their letter. At the conclusion of the letter, the ANCC urged the foreign ministry to refrain from supporting the said academic forum.

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