Turkish Reaction to Senate Bill ‘Indicative of Its Importance’ Says Deputy Foreign Minister
YEREVAN—Armenia’s Deputy Foreign Minister, Shavarsh Kocharyan, commented on Ankara’s reaction to a U.S. Senate bill calling for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide, calling the reaction a testament to Turkey’s disregard for human rights and justice.
“Turkey’s reaction to the adoption of the Armenian Genocide Resolution by the Foreign Relations Committee of the US Senate once again testifies to the importance and urgency of international recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide in the international struggle to prevent new crimes against humanity in the future,” Armenian Deputy Foreign Minister Shavarsh Kocharyan said.
The comments come after the Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a statement Thursday, calling the bill a “hastily and ineptly prepared draft resolution.”
On Thursday, by a vote of 12 to 5 the Senate Foreign Relations Committee adopted the Armenian Genocide resolution, which urges Turkey to recognize the Genocide.
Angered at Thursday’s passage of the Armenian Genocide resolution by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the Turkish Foreign Ministry lashed out at the legislative body condemning the adoption of the measure.
“The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee has acted beyond its position, competence and responsibility by adopting by majority vote a hastily and ineptly prepared draft resolution (S.Res.410). We reject this attempt at a political exploitation that distorts history and law, and we condemn those who led this prejudiced initiative, which is devoid of any legal ground,” said an official foreign ministry statement.
Earlier on Thursday, journalists questioned State Department Press Spokesperson Jen Psaki regarding the Obama Administration’s position on the Senate Armenian Genocide Resolution and pending Committee consideration. Despite repeated queries, Psaki stopped short of the State Department’s traditional practice of openly arguing against the adoption of Armenian Genocide legislation.
Psaki explained, “Well, our position has long been that we acknowledge – clearly acknowledge as historical fact and mourn the loss of 1.5 million Armenians who were massacred or marched to their deaths in the final days of the Ottoman Empire. These horrific events resulted in one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century, and the United States recognizes that they remain a great source of pain for the people of Armenia and of Armenian descent, as they do for all of us who share basic universal values. Beyond that, I don’t have any other comment for you.”