EP President: dialogue between Turks and Armenians only way forward

EP President: dialogue between Turks and Armenians only way forward

PanARMENIAN.Net - Honest dialogue between the Turks and the Armenians about the past is the only way forward, President of the European Parliament said.

Martin Schulz issued a statement on centenary of Armenian Genocide on his Facebook page:

“Today we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the one-and-a-half million innocent Armenian victims killed in the Ottoman Empire. On 24 April 1915, intellectuals and community leaders were arrested by authorities of the Ottoman Empire. That day marked the beginning of one of the greatest tragedies of the 20th century. After WW1, 24 April became a memorial day for Armenians and the world.

Vice-President Czarnecki is in Yerevan today to represent the European Parliament at the commemoration ceremony. He will express the condolences of all our members and remember the tragic events that have shattered the foundations of this great country, with a long history and a rich cultural heritage. At the plenary session last Wednesday, the European Parliament adopted a resolution on the matter with an overwhelming majority. In it the MEPs urged both sides to use the centenary to "pave the way for a genuine reconciliation between the Turkish and Armenian peoples".

I understand that reconciliation between Armenia and Turkey is difficult. Many wounds are still open; many voices still need to be heard. The process of healing will take time. But we must not forget that important steps towards reconciliation and recognition of the past have been made in recent years. It is now important that we continue in this positive direction.

As a German, I am confronted with the past of my country every day. I know how important it is to remember history and to be as open as possible to the past. However, remembrance must always come with the genuine intention for reconciliation. Nowhere is this better known than in Europe, which was not only the theatre of some of the worst atrocities in human history, but also the place of remarkable reconciliation and coming to terms with history, showing the entire world what the power of peace and mutual understanding can achieve.

The goal must be to overcome speechlessness and to talk to each other instead of about each other. The only way forward is an honest dialogue between the Turks and the Armenians about what the horrible past means for today and how its commemoration can lead to a better relationship between both countries in the future,” the statement reads.

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