April 23, 2013 - 09:33 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - On Wednesday, April 24, Armenian-Canadians will gather in Ottawa to commemorate the 98th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, with its annual noontime Parliament Hill observance and subsequent demonstration in front of the embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Canada.
Some 1,500 Armenian-Canadians from across the nation are expected to gather on Parliament Hill to hear Members of Parliament, dignitaries, and community leaders honor the memory of the 1.5 million Armenians that systematically perished at the hands of the Ottoman Turks beginning in 1915.
The observance will be followed by a planned march toward the Turkish embassy for a peaceful demonstration against Turkey's decades-old campaign of denial. "Armenians are resolved to pursue justice for the horrendous genocide committed by the Turks against the Armenian people," stated Dr. Girair Basmadjian, president of the Armenian National Committee of Canada. "The government of Turkey will never succeed in its constant attempts to rewrite history. The world will never forget. Canadians will never forget. We are fortunate that, in Canada, both Houses of Parliament, the government of Canada, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper have officially recognized the Armenian Genocide. We commend the efforts of our government and parliamentarians in ensuring that truth and justice prevail."
For decades, successive governments of the Republic of Turkey have embarked upon an active campaign of denial, fabrication, and misrepresentation as it attempted, and continues to attempt, to cover-up its crimes against humanity. In its attempts to rewrite history, Turkey has consistently employed some of the world's leading lobbyists and public relations firms, having spent tens of millions of dollars over the years. In Canada, Turkey has in the past retained the services of Fleishman-Hilliard and other lobbyists.
"Armenian-Canadians are asking their government to encourage Turkey to stop its denials and come to terms with its past," stated Dr. Basmadjian. "All Canadians should be proud of their parliamentarians for standing firm against Turkish pressure to change Canada's position regarding the Armenian Genocide."