Turkey says Cyprus’ Genocide denial law “null and void”

Turkey says Cyprus’ Genocide denial law “null and void”

PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkey’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic has said Cypriot law on banning denial of Armenian Genocide is “not worth of commenting,” according to Massis Post.

Bilgic said in a statement that “the decision is null and void for Turkey and not worthy of comment.”

“It is without doubt that those who try to exploit the 1915 incidents at every opportunity by using simple political ambitions cannot get any result,” Anadolu Agency quoted Bilgic as saying.

On Thursday, April 2, the Cypriot parliament unanimously adopted a law, making it a crime to deny the Armenian Genocide.

The bill, which was jointly submitted by all political parties to the Greek Cypriot parliament, can impose a five-year imprisonment and fine of €10,000 to those who deny the Genocide.

Armenian National Assembly (NA) delegation led by NA President Galust Sahakyan has met with President Nicos Anastasiades of Cyprus and expressed gratitude to the House of Representatives of Cyprus for adoption of the bill.

Anastasiades, for his part, noted that Cyprus has been and will always remain Armenia’s brotherly country, and it will use its powers to assist its friendship country.

The Cypriot president also reaffirmed his participation in the forthcoming Armenian Genocide centennial commemorations.

The Armenian Genocide

The Armenian Genocide (1915-23) was the deliberate and systematic destruction of the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during and just after World War I. It was characterized by massacres and deportations, involving forced marches under conditions designed to lead to the death of the deportees, with the total number of deaths reaching 1.5 million.

The majority of Armenian Diaspora communities were formed by the Genocide survivors.

Present-day Turkey denies the fact of the Armenian Genocide, justifying the atrocities as “deportation to secure Armenians”. Only a few Turkish intellectuals, including Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk and scholar Taner Akcam, speak openly about the necessity to recognize this crime against humanity.

The Armenian Genocide was recognized by Uruguay, Russia, France, Lithuania, Italy, 45 U.S. states, Greece, Cyprus, Lebanon, Argentina, Belgium, Austria, Wales, Switzerland, Canada, Poland, Venezuela, Chile, Bolivia, the Vatican, Luxembourg, Brazil, Germany, the Netherlands, Paraguay, Sweden, Venezuela, Slovakia, Syria, Vatican, as well as the European Parliament and the World Council of Churches.

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