YEREVAN—Armenia’s National Assembly passed a resolution on Tuesday, recognizing the Assyrian and Greek genocides committed by the Ottoman Empire between 1915 and 1923. The bill passed unanimously, with 117 votes.
The bill was authored by Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Eduard Sharmazanov, leader of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) parliamentary faction Armen Rustamyan, as well as members of Parliament Hovhannes Sahakyan, Edmon Marukyan, Arpine Hovhannisyan, Tevan Poghosyan, Gurgen Arsenyan, Heghine Bisharyan, Alexander Arzumanyan, Vahram Baghdasaryan, Hermine Naghdalyan, Margarit Yesayan, and Lyudmila Sargsyan.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Sharmazanov explained that by condemning the Assyrian and Greek genocides, Armenia stood in solidarity with the two communities. “By submitting the draft as a declaration of condemnation, we want to show society and our Greek and Assyrian brothers and sisters and the international community that the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia and all the political forces attach importance to [the] condemnation of the genocide perpetrated against the Greeks and Assyrians,” said Sharmazanov.
The SEYFO Center, an Assyrian genocide research center, publicly thanked the Republic of Armenia for its official recognition of the Assyrian Genocide, PRWeb reports.
In 1915, during the First World War, Turkish and Kurdish forces launched a campaign of genocide to exterminate the Assyrian people living in the Turkish Empire. Lasting from 1915 to 1923, this campaign of genocide is known as the “Seyfo,” or “The Sword,” by Assyrians worldwide, and coincided with the genocide of Armenians and Greeks.
The centerpiece of a larger plan of ethnic and religious cleansing, the Turkish state and its Kurdish allies conspired and murdered millions of Assyrians, Armenians and Greeks 100 years ago during the height of the First World War.
Sabri Atman, director of the SEYFO Center, said, “Today, March 24th, 2015, history is being rewritten in Yerevan, the capital of the Republic of Armenia, as that nation officially recognizes this terrible and shameful period in history. The Republic of Armenia’s decision to recognize the Assyrian and Greek Genocide, the Seyfo, encourages Assyrians everywhere – it strengthens us to continue our fight to have the Seyfo recognized by the whole international community. We salute the Republic of Armenia for taking this most human and principled stand.”