Turkey’s EU Minister Repeats Genocide Denial Comments

Turkey's EU Minister Egemen Bagis

ISTANBUL (Reuters)—Turkey’s EU affairs minister repeated on Tuesday his denial that Ottoman Turks had committed genocide against Armenians, in a challenge to Swiss officials who are investigating whether similar comments last month broke the law.

Turkey summoned the Swiss ambassador on Monday to complain about the decision by Swiss officials to investigate Minister Egemen Bagis’s comments at the World Economic Forum in Davos and also at a concert in Zurich.

“I said there on that day that what happened in 1915 was not genocide and I repeat that today. Nobody should doubt that I will give the same answer every time I am asked,” Bagis told a news conference.

“I don’t recognize any power that can detain any minister of the Turkish Republic. I am very much at ease on this subject,” he said. “If necessary I would go again to Davos and say the same thing.”

Swiss anti racism laws make it illegal to deny a genocide.

Last month, the French Senate approved similar legislation, prompting an angry response from Turkey. Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan termed the legislation “discriminatory and racist.

An attorney for the Zurich state prosecutor’s office said Swiss officials had started an initial probe into Bagis’s remarks after receiving a complaint from the Switzerland-Armenia group. As a minister, Bagis may enjoy immunity from prosecution.

Swiss authorities have taken legal action against several people who have denied the Armenian genocide. The most prominent case is the conviction of Turkish politician Dogu Perincek, who was fined 3,000 Swiss francs in 2007.


Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.


  1. Basil said:

    Way to abuse your immunity – just another immature reaction from the Turkish side. Bagis in particular seems to try very hard to show Europe that Turkey does not belong in the EU – all while Turks like to say they don’t even care any longer because their GDP has reached that of Bavaria (7-8 times less population). Well then why not just spare us this minister and dissolve his ministry?

  2. satrap said:

    Dogu Perincek filed a case with the european human right court and the court requested a defence from Swiss and most probably will deliver its verdict in this year

  3. Jerry said:

    I think the Swiss should diligently enforce their own laws. If this man is making a deliberate provocation, for imperialist reasons, then the investigation will highlight that.

    If he is just a coward and a bombastic bully hiding behind diplomatic immunity, let the Turks get the just recognition for such a tactic.

  4. Tsayt said:

    Well, no one should be surprised to see the face of the embodiment of Turkish contempt of Armenians. This is not just an expression of a personal thought. This denial, uttered with a smiling face, says much about the
    perfect attitude of a Turk against the Armenian nation. Whether an Islamist or o Ataturkist they all share in a common feeling of loathing of the Armenians. They all share in the crime of the murder of our nation.

    Welcome to an official expression a sentiment that Armenians already know very well, it just reinforces our determination of what needs to be done.

  5. HArutuyn said:

    whot the …. is this guy talking smack like these or he is to sure that what he denies will stand up
    not for long yes ko more brtem ay b..i txa

  6. The Truth said:

    Not every publicity is a good publicity.

    The rude ‎ Behaviour and provocations of this Turkish ‎Minster could be serving as a good example that the denial of Armenian Genocide is not an ‎historical issue or disputed fact but its denial is poorly politically motivated on the heights ‎state level. Therefore such a racial motivated and deliberately denial needs a political answer ‎and an holistic approach by the democratic countries and laws, which takes the systematic ‎denial of Armenian Genocide by its preparatory and insulting of the victims into account!‎

  7. facts said:

    The statements of this macho Turkish Minster could be of much useful to convince the ‎constitutional court of France that denial of Armenian Genocide is indeed state sponsored as ‎the documented genocide itself. Therefore to tolerate the aggressive and systematic denial or ‎justification of a well documented Genocide would be as criminal as to tolerate curing out ‎genocide.‎

    If a state like Turkey could claim justification and denial of genocide were part of free speech, ‎in this case -the genocide itself- licence to annihilate of people by Turkish – could be regard as legal act ‎too

  8. Arziv said:

    This turk can give himself the license to flout any laws on account of his diplomatic immunity. The swiss authorities-will not be able to arraign him or even question him. An unrepentant descendant of criminal ottomans. Like father like son, the saying goes. The present turkish leadership are the inheritors of the young turks mind set. Turkey was born as a result of the rise of the young turks and their ideology. Turkey can not continue as a nation without the prop of this ideology. It is their raison-d’etre for their continued existence. Nevertheless this turk should be chased and make him conspicuously embarassed in the diplomatic fraternity for remarks deliberately showing scorn and disregard of local laws.

  9. Globalcitizen said:

    I bet this chicken**** wouldn’t have the **** to go back to Switzerland if the Swiss decide to press charges against him. He became a tough guy once back in in his murderous country. Typical turkish politician too much bark no bite.

  10. Raffikian said:

    It’s normal that the majority of Turks deny the Genocide, it’s like asking PolPot if he did Cambodian Genocide the world powers were the ones who condemned the Cambodian Genocide, it is useless to expect from Turkish representatives to admit the Armenian Genocide, the countries with High Moral Values are the once need to recognize and override Turkeys objections, there will always be people for economic or for other reasons knowingly refuse and lie in favo rof Turkey.

  11. Christo said:

    One needs to ask this frog “where were your grandparents and what role did they engage in during the Hamidian massacres and between 1909-1923?” EVERY turkish politician needs to answer those questions.