Bush Administration May Fail to Stop Passage of Genocide Bill, Bryza Concedes

WASHINGTON (Zaman)–Matthew Bryza, a top-level official from the US State Department, asserted that the George Bush Administration would strongly oppose any draft law on the recognition of an Armenian genocide. However, he added that given the complexity of the new political environment since the midterm elections, it was hard for them to precisely foresee any outcome. Bryza was speaking at the annual convention of the Assembly of Turkish-American Associations and commented on the possibility of an Armenian genocide bill introduced to the House of Representatives, where the Democrats have recently gained control. He described the new situation as a change in the political reality and said that it was impossible for the administration to predict how the new mechanism would operate with regards to the fate of any proposal for recognition of the Armenian genocide. Newly ensconced House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, promised the Armenian lobby to support any bill regarding the genocide. Asked whether President Bush would call Pelosi to ensure that any such draft would not be put on the agenda, Bryza said that he would make his own suggestion but was unable to know how the president would proceed. The Armenian lobby is expected to submit genocide bills to both wings of Congress following its inauguration. Meanwhile, in his address at the meeting, Bryza, drew attention to Russian attempts at being the sole energy supplier to the region and underlined the importance of Turkish-American strategic cooperation.

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