11/05/2019 Turkey (International Christian Concern) – Following a decision by the U.S. House of Representatives on October 29th to recognize the Armenian genocide committed by Turkey a century ago, Turkey has begun an aggressive media campaign condemning the decision.
The Armenian genocide is widely recognized by over thirty countries as the intentional extermination, deportation, and annihilation of Armenian Christians living in Turkey during the early 1900s. Turkey, however, actively denies these activities as genocide and instead redefines them as legitimate war causalities. Turkey actively invests resources into the continued denial of genocide and maintains a strong practice of hindering local Armenians from equal participation in society.
Armenians of Turkish origin have a history of filing financial compensation and reparation cases against Turkey. According to a member of Turkey’s Presidency’s Higher Advisory Board, Cemil Çiçek, there is fear that the U.S. resolution could further opportunities for Armenians to file these kinds of lawsuits against Turkey. He warns that this could create problems for Turkey over the next century.
Turkish media, most of which are under state control, has strongly condemned U.S. recognition of the Armenian genocide. Some are connecting the Armenian Church to FETÖ, which Turkey recognizes as a terrorist organization that is allegedly responsible for the 2016 coup. These kinds of articles imply that Turkish Armenians who support genocide recognition are traitors.
It is also worth noting that the Armenian Church is currently petitioning the Turkish government for permission to complete a patriarchal election. The government has interfered in this process for over a decade.
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