PARIS—Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy met with representatives of the Armenian community in Paris on Monday, reported Nouvelles d’Armenie. Co-chairmen of the Coordinating Council of Armenian Organizations in France Ara Toranian presented to Sarkozy issues of concern for the Armenian community such as the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. He relayed that the security of Karabakh is of key importance not only for Armenia, but for the entire European civilization. Toranian also spoke about the negative impact it Turkey’s membership in the EU would have on the Armenian community.
The meeting discussed the issue of Sarkozy’s circle having close ties with Azerbaijan. Sarkozy responded that during political decision-making, he is the leader; not the representatives within his circle. He said he supported the criminalization of the denial of the Armenian Genocide during his presidency. Sarkozy also affirmed that he is against Turkey’s membership in the EU, contrary to current President Hollande’s position.
Regarding the topic of genocides, Sarkozy underlined the four genocides of the 20th century– the Armenian Genocide, the Holocaust, the genocide of Cambodians and the Tutsi genocide. He highlighted that the Armenian struggle raises issues to combat genocide universally. According to him, denial is not an expression of opinion, but it is a crime.
Sarkozy also had a meeting with the Armenian community at the National Center for Armenian Remembrance Decines, France on November 9, reported Nouvelles D’Armenia.
“The word genocide must not be trivialized. Its negation is a crime against intelligence and morality. The situation for Christians in the East is genocide,” Sarkozy said, speaking about Christians in the Middle East.
Regarding the possibly of Turkey’s entrance to the European Union, Sarkozy said “I went to Ankara to say on the spot that Turkey is certainly a great civilization, but that its place is not in Europe, and also that a great country must recognize the glorious hours as the dark hours in its history.”