French MP Urges Passage of Genocide Denial Bill

PARIS (Combined Sources)–Rene Rouquet, the French member of parliament and Mayor of Alfortville, called on the French Senate to pass a pending bill criminalizing the denial of the Armenian Genocide.

“This is an issue concerning not only Armenia’s of France but also all who value justice and the rule of law. Those who look at France as the home of human rights should vote for the bill criminalizing the Armenian Genocide denial,” Rouquet was quoted as saying, reported French-Armenian journalist Jean Eckian.

Meanwhile, Alain Marleix, Secretary of State for Interior, Overseas Territories and Local Authorities said that his country’s position of the issue is clear. “The bill exists but the French government believes that the past should be dealt by historian and the parliament is not entitled to adopt bills on the issue,” he said, adding France welcomes the dialogue between Armenia and Turkey.

The Coordination Council of the Armenian Organizations of France is planning another protest in front of the Senate on December 10, the international day of human rights.

Hundreds of French Armenia’s converged on the French Senate on October 1, calling on the body to pass a bill making it a crime to deny that Armenia’s suffered genocide at the hands of the Turks.

The bill, which was adopted by the French National Assembly on Oct 12, 2006, provides for a year in jail and a 45,000-euro fine–the same punishment that is imposed for denying the Nazi Holocaust.

But it needed approval from the Senate and President to become a law.

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