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The Anti-Defamation League recognizes the Armenian Genocide but is opposed to the US Congress resolution of recognition because of the Turkish State’s weight of threats on the Jewish community of Turkey.

On August 24, the Anti-Defamation League of the United States (ADL) made volte-face by definitively recognizing the genocide of the Armenians, after the steering committee of the campaign “No Place for Hate” of Massachusetts (USA) severed ties with ADL because of the latter’s hitherto denial of the genocide.

ADL’s new position, which had followed heated controversy, was immediately adopted by the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the other large Jewish lobbying organization in the United States. The pressure exercised by the constituencies of ADL and AJC, which brought about the progress in their position, caused hysteria in the Turkish political circles who “until then sub-contracted” to the American Jewish organizations part of Turkey’s communication policy and program in the USA. In the context of a possible voting this Autumn by the American Congress of the resolution on the genocide of the Armenians, these changes in position led Turkey to denounce its lobbying contracts in Washington, while the Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan had lengthy discussions with President Shimon Perez, summoned to bring the American Jews into step.

The ADL affirms that the League “had suddenly shared the appreciation that [...] the tragic events of 1915-1918 were actually the equivalent of genocide”. It adds however: “… we firmly continue to think that a resolution of the Congress would be counterproductive and would not facilitate the reconciliation between Turks and Armenians…”.

The principal reason of its opposition to a resolution of recognition by the American Congress is at the very least shocking: it is the safety of the Jews of Turkey which is brought forward. “As long as the ADL will remain an organization engaged firstly in the security and the safety of the Jewish
people, we cannot in good conscience ignore the wellbeing of the 20.000 Jews of Turkey”, declares the last official statement of the ADL signed by its
president Abraham Foxman.

Echoing a similar view, the Consul general of Israel in Turkey MordehaiAmihai, highlighted his concern in the declaration: “I hope that the Turkish population can differentiate between the State of Israel, the ADL and the Jewish population of Turkey”.

The Turkish government pressures on Israel aims to obtain the realignment behind Ankara the American Jewish organizations, like the ADL, and obtain
support to their denial policy.

“The Jews of Turkey are hostages” declared Laurent Leylekian, the executive director of the European Armenian Federation; “contrary to the idea spread by a massive propaganda, this community, like all the other non-Turkish communities, does not enjoy any freedom, and is used to force the international Jewish organizations to betray the principles of defense, of justice and of human dignity for which they were however created” he

“Blackmailing with the life and the safety of the minorities is usual practice and in line with Turkish traditional policy; the Armenians have had the horrific experience. It is urgent for the Jewish organizations of Europe to support their American counterparts in their refusal to yield to this odious blackmail” affirmed Laurent Leylekian.

The European Armenian Federation reminder: Anti-Semitic scathing attacks such as “Mein Kampf” or the “The Protocols of Wise Men of Zion” have been
for several years the best-sellers in Turkey, like are many armenophobic

for Justice and Democracy
Avenue de la Renaissance 10
B-1000 Bruxelles
Tel: +322 732 70 26
Tel/Fax: +322 732 70 27

For immediate release
August 31, 2007
Contact: Vartenie ECHO
Tel: +322 732 70 26


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