EPP Recognizes, Condemns Genocide

On 3 March, the European People's Party (EPP) adopted a resolution recognising and condemning the Armenian Genocide as well as paying tribute to the victims in the 100th anniversary.  The EPP, which is the largest European political party, has adopted the resolution following the initiative of its sister parties from Armenia.

European Friends of Armenia (EuFoA) welcomes this resolution. EuFoA Director, Mr Eduardo Lorenzo Ochoa, comments: "This text is meant not only as a tribute, but also as a call for both historical justice and historical reconciliation."

On 3 March, the European People's Party (EPP) adopted a resolution recognising and condemning the Armenian Genocide as well as paying tribute to the victims in the 100th anniversary.  The EPP, which is the largest European political party, has adopted the resolution following the initiative of its sister parties from Armenia.

European Friends of Armenia (EuFoA) welcomes this resolution. EuFoA Director, Mr Eduardo Lorenzo Ochoa, comments: "This text is meant not only as a tribute, but also as a call for both historical justice and historical reconciliation."

The text adopted by the EPP political assembly refers to different aspects of this atrocious crime, such as "…dispossession of the homeland, the massacres and ethnic cleansing aimed at the extermination of the Armenian population, the destruction of the Armenian heritage, as well as the denial of the Genocide, all attempts to avoid responsibility, to consign to oblivion the committed crimes and their consequences or to justify them, as a continuation of this crime and encouragement to commit new genocides…"

Moreover the resolution calls upon Turkey to recognise and condemn the Genocide committed by the Ottoman Empire as a base for the complete normalisation and Europeanisation of its relationship along with its international commitments and European aspirations. It also appeals to international organisations, specially the EU and CoE member states, to restore historical justice and pay tribute to the victims. This political initiative puts also a strong accent on cultural and religious component of this crime, noting that this heritage should be repaired and returned to the Armenian and other relevant communities.

"I am particularly pleased to see the accession to EU political families by Armenian political parties, in which I have invested myself so intensely, has a mutually beneficial outcome also in such transcendent matters as the Genocide" adds Mr Lorenzo Ochoa.

The EPP is the largest European-level political party of the centre-right, which currently includes 78 member-parties from 39 countries (including 3 from Armenia: Republican Party of Armenia, Heritage and Country of Law) the Presidents of the European Commission and the European Council, 11 EU and 6 non-EU heads of state and government, 14 members of the European Commission and the largest Group in the European Parliament with 219 members.

The full text of the resolution follows:

Resolution adopted by the EPP Political Assembly ( 3rd March 2015) on
“The Armenian Genocide and European Values”

The European People’s Party reaffirms its recognition and condemnation of the Genocide and Great National Dispossession of the Armenian people on the eve of its 100th Anniversary on 24 April 2015.

1. We condemn the genocidal acts against the Armenian people, planned and continuously perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire and various regimes of Turkey in 1894-1923, dispossession of the homeland, the massacres and ethnic cleansing aimed at the extermination of the Armenian population, the destruction of the Armenian heritage, as well as the denial of the Genocide, all attempts to avoid responsibility, to consign to oblivion the committed crimes and their consequences or to justify them, as a continuation of this crime and encouragement to commit new genocides.

2. We commemorate one-and-a-half million innocent victims of the Armenian Genocide in 1915 and bow in gratitude to those martyred and surviving heroes who struggled for their lives and human dignity. Moreover, we recognize, that the Genocide resulted in the death and dispossession not only of Armenian people but also extended to the Pontic Greeks and Assyrians peoples, and we commemorate them as well.

3. We join and strongly support the commitment of Armenia and the Armenian people to continue the international struggle for the prevention of genocides, the restoration of the rights of people subjected to genocide and the establishment of historical justice.

4. We invite Turkey, in the finest example of integrity and leadership proffered by the Federal Republic of post-war Germany, to face history and finally recognize the ever-present reality of the Armenian Genocide and its attendant dispossession, to seek redemption and make restitution appropriate for a European country, including but not limited to ensuring a right of return of the Armenian people to, and a secure reconnection with, their national hearth―all flowing from the fundamental imperative of achieving Reconciliation through the Truth.

5. We call upon the Government of Turkey to respect and realize fully the legal obligations which it has undertaken including those provisions which relate to the protection of cultural heritage and, in particular, to conduct in good faith an integrated inventory of Armenian and other cultural heritage destroyed or ruined during the past century, based thereon to develop a strategy of priority restoration of ancient and medieval capital cities, churches, schools, fortresses, cemeteries, and other treasures located in historic Western Armenia, and to render the aforementioned fully operational cultural and religious institutions.

6. We appeal to EU and CoE member states, international organizations, all people of good will, regardless of their ethnic origin and religious affiliation, to unite their efforts aimed at restoring historical justice and paying tribute to the memory of the victims of the Armenian Genocide.

7. Taking the foregoing into account, the European People’s Party invites Turkey to take the following measures pursuant to its international commitments and the European identity to which it aspires:

– to recognize and condemn the Armenian Genocide committed by the Ottoman Empire, and to face its own history and memory through commemorating the victims of that heinous crime against humanity;

– to provide a vision and an implementing plan of action worthy of a truly European Turkey, including a comprehensive resolution of issues relating to the freedom of expression and reference to the Genocide in state, society and educational institutions, as well as the repair of religious and other cultural sites and their return to the Armenian and other relevant communities;

– to launch the long-awaited celebration of the Armenian national legacy based on a total Turkish-Armenian normalization anchored in the assumption of history, the pacific resolution of all outstanding matters, and a complete Europeanization of their relationship.

8. It also invites the European Union, its Commission, Council and Parliament, and the international community as a whole, in assessment of the honoring of commitments and obligations undertaken by Turkey, to accord continued attention to the recognition, restoration, and restitution of our shared heritage as herewith tendered, and hereafter officially to commemorate April 24 as a day to remember and condemn the Armenian Genocide and man’s inhumanity to man.

9. We express the hope that recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide by Turkey will serve as a starting point for the historical reconciliation of the Armenian and Turkish peoples.

1 comment
  1. The Case of Self-Reconcilation

    Again and again, please stop deliberating on reconciliation–self or bilateral. There can be no reconciliation without acknowledgement–reconnaissance–assumed accountability, as stated by universal international norms and international law dealing with genocide.

    Armenian civil society should support and push the Armenian genocide question (all its aspects including reparation, indemnification, return of lands, proprieties, etc.) through entitled UN bodies. Claim for  the creation of  a Special  International Tribunal like the ICP to deliberate and judge impartially the Armenian Genocide probing mindsets. Legal action is needed to stop vicious denial and Azeri aggression. Do come and sit at human rights council meetings.  Armenia is again  presenting genocide resolutions while facing terrible encounters with Azerbaijan.

     Aline D.

    UN/Geneva

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