The Armenian community responds to Turkish Ambassador

March 19, 2010 by J-Wire Staff
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Earlier this week, the Turkish Ambassador Oguz Ozge addressed the Capital Jewish Forum in Canberra and spoke of the 1915 Armenian genocide. The Armenian community has responded to his remarks.J-Wire would like to establish two points before publishing the response.

1.  Comments published on this site may have been moderated by J-Wire but they do not necessarily reflect J-Wire’s viewpoint. We are strictly a news service and do not publish op-eds although we may publish articles written by highly-informed writers.

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The response from the Armenian community:

from Varant Meguerditchian


Armenian National Committee of Australia Inc

We write to you in reference to the recently posted article ‘Turkish Ambassador speaks to Canberra group’. The article primarily touches upon a visit by members of the CJF to the Turkish Embassy in Canberra whereby the members of the Jewish Community were introduced to aspects of Turkish culture. The article also includes the denial of the Armenian Genocide in a speech delivered by the Turkish Ambassador to those present at the reception.

We want to underscore that it is not just Armenians who are affirming the Armenian Genocide but it is hundreds of independent scholars, who have no affiliations with governments, and whose work spans many countries and nationalities and the course of decades. The scholarly evidence reveals the following:

On April 24, 1915, under cover of World War I, the Young Turk government of the Ottoman Empire began a systematic genocide of its Armenian citizens – an unarmed Christian minority population. More than a million Armenians were exterminated through direct killing, starvation, torture, and forced death marches. Another million fled into permanent exile. Thus an ancient civilization was expunged from its homeland of 2,500 years.

The Armenian Genocide is corroborated by the international scholarly, legal, and human rights community:

1) Polish jurist Raphael Lemkin, when he coined the term genocide in 1944, cited the Turkish extermination of the Armenians and the Nazi extermination of the Jews as defining examples of what he meant by genocide.

2) The killings of the Armenians is genocide as defined by the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

3) In 1997 the International Association of Genocide Scholars, an organization of theworld’s foremost experts on genocide, unanimously passed a formal resolution affirming the Armenian Genocide.

4) 126 leading scholars of the Holocaust including Elie Wiesel and Yehuda Bauer placed a statement in the New York Times in June 2000 declaring the “incontestable fact of the Armenian Genocide” and urging western democracies to acknowledge it.

5) The Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide (Jerusalem), the Institute for the Study of Genocide (NYC) have affirmed the historical fact of the Armenian Genocide.

6) Leading texts in the international law of genocide such as William A. Schabas’s Genocide in International Law (Cambridge University Press, 2000) cite the Armenian Genocide as a precursor to the Holocaust and as a precedent for the law on crimes against humanity.

7) Lead Genocide Scholars in Australia including Prof. Colin Tatz, Prof. Robert Manne, Dr. Paul Bartrop and Dr. Donna-Lee Frieze have studied and produced scholarly works affirming the historical reality of the Armenian Genocide. The Australian Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies based at the University of NSW, Shalom College is each year, host to an ‘Armenian Genocide Commemorative Lecture’.


2 Responses to “The Armenian community responds to Turkish Ambassador”
  1. David says:

    Thank you Jwire for posting the response by the President of the Armenian community. Statements made by Genocide denialists whether they are by David Irving or Turkish Ambassadors, should be rebutted.

  2. Emes says:

    It’s shameful that Turkey has yet to come to terms with its past actions against Armenians.

    However, it is heartening that Jewish historians and Holocaust scholars – such as Australia’s Colin Tatz – have recognised these actions for what they truly were: genocide.

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