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06 06 10 - Campaign for Recognition of the Armenian Genocide
Campaign for Recognition of the Armenian Genocide
E-mail: _info@24april.org_ (
Adjournment debate on The Recognition of the Genocide of Armenians and Assyrians took place yesterday afternoon (Wednesday, 7th June) on the floor of the House.

Steve Pound, MP for Ealing North, made sharp factual and historical presentations of this genocide - with eloquent details of the incidents that took place during this chapter. He focused mainly on the period from 1915 till 1923 in order to highlight the genocidal policy pursued by the then leaders of Ottoman Turkey.

Andrew Dismore, MP for Hendon, was also extremely helpful in adding facts and figures during the debate that underlined once again the brutal and calculated nature of Ottoman policies at the time.

You can watch the full debate by logging on to the following weblink:


Do note that the first part of the weblink relates to the earlier debate on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But you can choose the actual debate on the Armenian Genocide by timing it from 01:28 till 01:58, or just allowing the first 90 minutes to play out until this adjournment debate follows it.

Although CRAG will forward to you in due course the Hansard transcript of
this debate, we would like to highlight briefly today some of the points that were emphasised by Steve Pound (and additional comments by Andrew Dismore) during the 30-minute debate:

1) References to 1894-96 and 1909;

2) The trial and vilification of Orhan Pamuk and the new Turkisn Penal Code (including Art 301);

3) The Blue Book and its verifiable authenticity in terms of witness accounts and description - with due recognition to the scholarship of Arnold Toynbee and Viscount Bryce, and the recent publication of the uncensored version of this same book by Mr Ara Sarafian of Gomidas Institute;

4) The contribution made by Lord Avebury to the cause of recognition of the Armenian Genocide;

5) A clear exposition by Steve Pound of the Turkish Ottoman policy of Turkification, and its nexus with Islamic jihad (a term that was used even then in the Armenian context);

6) The reasons for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide - and the "double death" experienced by Armenians at what happened to their ancestors at the time and the continuing denial today;

7) Steven Pound also referred to the CRAG leaflet to cite examples some of the Executive and Legislative bodies worldwide that have recognised the genocide to date. He also referred to some people with whom he has worked on this issue - including people affiliated with CRAG such as its Chair;

8) The conclusion was extremely powerful. Andrew Dismore quoted Adolf Hitler's infamous 'Who remembers today the Armenians', and Steve Pound concluded by
reading out Sir Winston Churchill's statement (as reproduced in the CRAG Leaflet): 'In 1915, the Turkish Government began and ruthlessly carried out the infamous general massacre and deportation of Armenians in Asia Minor.' 'There is no rerasonable doubt that this crime was planned and executed for political reasons.'

The respondent for the Government was The Rt Hon Geoff Hoon, Minsiter of State for Europe. His points were predictable in terms of official government response. Again, you can watch his short reply on the same weblink, but his three main arguments were as follows:

1) The UN Convention on Genocide 1948 had not been enacted at the time of the Armenian massacres, and it is therefore not possible to apply its provisions retrospectively;

2) HM Government encourages both Armenia & Turkey to take up the suggestion by the Turkish Prime Minister (last year) to set up a joint Commission that would examine the events during WWI;

3) HM Government believes the body of evidence is insufficient to qualify those events unequivocally as genocide.

As CRAG has stated in the past, those arguments have already been rebutted in the past by eminent scholars of law, history and politics as well as the International Association of Genocide Scholars.

On a related note, kindly note that EDM 454 "Assyrian and Armenian Genocide in 1915" of 24 January 06 (sponsored by Stephen Pound) has now got 58 signatures, whilst EDM 2020 "Armenia" of 24 April 06 (sponsored by Jeremy Corbyn) has garnered 43 signatures to date.

CRAG would like to express its appreciation to Steve Pound for securing this adjournment debate in the House - it might not have changed Government policy, but it was another flagpole that was placed on the road toward recognition - one for which CRAG and other like-minded institutions or associations
such as the Assyrian Firodil, Wales-Armenia Solidarity or CSW have been pursuing in the UK.


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