BRUSSELS–The Christian-Democrat party in the Netherlands, the CDA (Christian Democrat Appel), has announced that Osman Elmaci has been turned down from having a seat in the European Parliament due to his attitude toward and his remarks denying the Armenian Genocide.
Elmaci, who had already been ousted from the last legislative elections for the same reasons, was the number three person behind the current MEP Joop Post, who resigned. He was to become a Member of the European Parliament after the withdrawal of Bartho Pronk’s candidacy. CDA leaders, already having a past record of principled stance against genocide denial, vetoed this possibility. Post will finally be replaced by Cornelis Visseur.
"We congratulate the CDA party for this courageous and visionary political decision. Denial ‘s under the pretext of ‘freedom of expression’ ‘s can only serve to perpetuate the racial hatred from which it derives,” declared Laurent Leylekian, Executive Director of the European Armenian Federation.
The European Armenian Federation is actively working to make denialist hatred a pan-European crime, as proposed in the framework decision on racism and xenophobia recently adopted by the European Council. The Federation notes that bills aimed at making the denial of the Armenian Genocide a crime are under consideration in Belgium, France, and the Netherlands. In the Netherlands, the project was initiated by Christen Unie, a founding member of the government coalition. In Switzerland, Dogu Perin?ek, a well-known denier of the Armenian Genocide has already been condemned.
The Federation also notes that the rapporteur of the current resolution on EU-Turkey relations, Oomen-Ruijten ‘s who is also a member of the CDA party ‘s has attempted to evade the Armenian Genocide issue in that resolution.
“Avoiding the genocide issue in this resolution is as serious as the open denial of Mr. Elmaci. In fact, it constitutes a form of denial that is more perverse and now more prevalent, that is denial by omission,” added Leylekian.
“We call on the CDA party to treat Mrs. Oomen-Ruijten’s case with the same moral deman’s it made with Mr. Elmaci, i.e. by charging her to comply with her own party line in the combat against any form of denial,” concluded Leylekian.