PARIS (EAFJD)–As various European bodies pressure Turkey to acknowledge the Armenian genocide as a prerequisite to its EU accession–the European Armenian Federation for Justice and Democracy (EAFJD) characterized Turkey’s latest initiatives as "panic and confusion."
"Ankara’s aims are perfectly clear–they try to remove the genocide recognition issue from the political field–especially because it is one the obstacles Turkey faces in its application to EU membership," stated Hilda Tchoboian–chairperson of the European Armenian Federation.
Earlier this week–Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed to have sent a letter to President Robert Kocharian–proposing the creation of a joint commission to "investigate the Armenia’s massacres of 1915."
To garner support for such a commission–members of the Turkish Parliament have sent a letter to European Parliament claiming that "until now–the facts have been one-sided and produced only by Armenia’s," and that "the unbiased truth will come from works on archives performed by a committee of historians representing both points of view of Armenia and Turkey–under the watch of an institutional arbitration board."
"Their method consists of reducing this international crime to a bilateral issue between Turkey and Armenia in order to avoid addressing the deman’s of the international community–especially those of Europe," Tchoboian said.
Recalling studies of independent experts who examined the Armenian genocide utilizing western diplomatic archives–those of the allies of Turkey–and through the great deal of documentation that the Turkish government neglected to provide–the EAFJD recapped that all three came to the same conclusion: what occurred in 1915 was a genocide in its international and juridical sense. Those experts were Jacques Vandemeulebroucke–MEP in charge of the report on the Armenian genocide (1987)–Benjamin Whitaker–special Rapporteur of the United Kingdom in charge of the UN report on genocides (1985)–and the prominent members of the Permanent People’s Tribunal.
"All this gives the impression of panic and confusion. Turkey has only one simple thing to do: recognize and redress the Armenian genocide," Tchoboian stressed.