PARIS–During its national congress held in Paris on January 18–the French party Union for French Democracy (UFD)–also known as the French Christian Democrats–declared that the question of Turkey’s candidacy to the European Union must be submitted as a treaty to be ratified by the vote of national parliamen’s or as a referendum.
During the session devoted to Europe–chaired by Alain Lamassoure (member of the European Parliament)–the question of Turkeys candidacy was raised before the Chairman of the UFD Franois Bayrou. Among those who commented on the topic was Dionis du Sjour (deputy of Lot et Garonne)–who rebuked "Turkish dictatorship," noting that "those who support Turkey are enemies of Europe." He added that Europe was not merely about "a simple free trade zone but an undertaking toward political integration in which Turkey has no place."
At the invitation of Franois Rochebloine (Chairperson of the Armenian Caucus in the French National Assembly and member of the French delegation to the Council of Europe)–a delegation of the European Armenian Federation–including chairperson Hilda Tchoboian and executive director Laurent Leylekian was asked to voice its views on the subject. Recalling "the values of peace–justice and democracy on which Europe is based," Tchoboian warned against assisting a country "built on the myth of racial superiority and one that wishes to integrate into the Union without renouncing its policy of intimidation and blackmail and without repenting for the crime of Genocide committed against its Armenian population."
"Turkey often reproaches the European Union as a ‘Christian club,’ " added Mrs. Tchoboian "but it has effectively created within its borders a ‘Muslim club.’ Forty percent of its population just before World War I was Christian. After the genocide of the Armenia’s–Assyro-Chaldeans and the brutal expulsion of Greeks–there is now less than one per thousand of the population which is Christian."
Lamassoure concluded the session by announcing he would propose to the Convention on the Future of Europe that the question of Turkey’s candidacy be submitted as a treaty to be ratified by the vote of national parliamen’s or as a referendum. He added "we cannot let a decision that has such a lasting and deep effect on the Union to the sole responsibility of the heads of state."
"We totally support Lamassoure’s proposal on this matter," declared Tchoboian. "We have confidence in the good sense of the nations of Europe. They know by instinct who belongs to the family and who doesn’t," she added. "Clearly–Turkey does not because it does not uphold the values of justice–democracy and human rights," concluded the Chairperson of the European Armenian Federation.