06/19/2020 Turkey (International Christian Concern) – On Tuesday, the High Advisory Board of the Turkish Presidency held a closed-door meeting to develop a response to so-called “groundless and anti-Turkey allegations” regarding the 1915 genocide against Christians.
President Erdogan and his communications director called the genocide a distorted historical event. The board accused the Armenian community of exploiting Ottoman pain and of slander for speaking about the genocide. This genocide is internationally recognized as a historically proven fact; one which Turkey has never apologized for. Instead Turkey has perpetuated and maintained those policies which led to the genocide.
Failure to acknowledge the genocide and Turkey’s intense efforts to deny it have led to significant persecution for the Christian communities who remain in Turkey. These issues cannot be understood without the historical context of the genocide, and the government actively discourages Christians from explaining this perspective. Turkey’s propaganda efforts regarding the genocide often includes language which justifies the mass murder of Christians, thus encouraging social hostilities towards Christians that have at times been expressed through deadly violence.
Turkey purports to safeguard religious freedom. But until the genocide is recognized, healing cannot occur within Turkish society.
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