LONDON—On April 2, the Youth and Student Unions of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation will hold a rally in front of the British Embassy in Armenia. The same day the ARF Youth Unions will hold rallies in front of British Embassies in different countries of the world and will hand over petitions to the diplomatic representations. The text of the petition is below:
April 24, 2015 marks the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. On the eve of the Genocide centennial, Britain is compelled to unburden its conscience and settle a moral debt to the Armenian nation.
As a major player in the geopolitical arena of the First World War, the UK was a prime witness of the calamity that fell upon the Armenian nation. As one and a half million Armenians suffered the terrors of the state-organized and implemented Genocide, Britain, in a joint statement with allies France and Russia, did not hesitate, in May 1915, to condemn the mass-slaughter as “new crimes of Turkey against humanity and civilization.” The British parliament published, in 1916, British historian Arnold Toynbee’s “Blue Book” which comprises meticulously documented testimonies and eye-witness accounts of the ravage the Armenians underwent in the hands of the Ottoman Turks. In his turn, Winston Churchill assessed the Armenians’ ordeal as an “administrative Holocaust,” aimed at “clearance of a race,” “planned and executed for political purposes.”
It has been unmistakably evident, that the British archives are replete with comprehensive records that disclose the veracity of the crime committed under the fog of the First World War.
As we approach the 24th of April, the positions of the British Government and the British Parliament are under close scrutiny. The centennial is the opportune moment for Britain to abandon the ranks of the cognizant but silent bystanders and to join the ranks of the righteous countries that have recognized the Armenian Genocide. It is in the interest of the UK to distance itself, without further delay, from the revisionist and denialist policies of Turkey.
As descendants of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide, Armenian youth are calling upon the Government of Britain to reclaim the moral integrity of May 1915 by recognizing the Armenian Genocide and condemning its perpetrator.
“We caution the UK government to abstain from euphemisms that belittle the pain of the Genocide victims and insult their memory,” a statement from the Youth and Student Unions of the ARF reads.
“We encourage the UK government to champion the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, and pursue the reinstatement of historical justice for the victims, and the restoration of the historical rights of the Armenian nation.
“We urge the UK parliament to initiate and adopt resolutions that acknowledge the Armenian Genocide, condemn the perpetrator of the crime, and criminalize its denial.
On the eve of the Armenian Genocide centennial, as descendants of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide, we remain ever resolute for the just cause of the Armenian Genocide victims and the timeless rights of the Armenian Nation.”