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U.S. Department rep parries question about recognition of Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Empire

  • by Ashot Safaryan

  • Friday, April 11, 14:50

 U.S. Department of State has commented on the Resolution of the Armenian Genocide passed by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee overnight. The resolution calls upon the Senate to commemorate this crime and encouraging the President to ensure that America's foreign policy reflects and reinforces the lessons, documented in the U.S. record, of the still-unpunished genocide. 

"Our position has long been that we acknowledge - clearly acknowledge as historical fact and mourn the loss of 1.5 million Armenians who were massacred or marched to their deaths in the final days of the Ottoman Empire. These horrific events resulted in one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century, and the United States recognizes that they remain a great source of pain for the people of Armenia and of Armenian descent, as they do for all of us who share basic universal values. Beyond that, I don't have any other comment for you," Jen Psaki, Spokesperson, said at the Daily Press Briefing at the Department of State.  Asked to comment on the fact that the resolution wants Administration to recognize or the President to recognize 24th of April as the commemoration for the 1915 events, genocide events, Ms. Psaki just said: "I just provided what our United States position is."

In response to the question what was Obama's position on the issue when he was candidate, Ms. Psaki said: 
"Well, I know that candidate Obama has his own personal views about this issue, which he - was actually in his statement that the White House sent out last year. I'm sure there'll be more statements to come at the end of this month.

To recall, for the first time in nearly a quarter century, a U.S.  Senate committee adopted an Armenian Genocide Resolution, on 10 April. The Resolution calls upon the Senate to commemorate this crime and encouraging the President to ensure that America's foreign policy reflects and reinforces the lessons, documented in the U.S. record, of this still-unpunished genocide. With a vote of 12 to 5, the Committee voted to condemn and commemorate the Armenian Genocide.

Senator Menendez announced the vote at the Armenian Genocide Observance on Capitol Hill yesterday evening, where he told his colleagues and attendees, "To me, to all men and women of good will, I would think there is a simple statement - genocide is genocide, and you cannot call it anything else but that and you need to have a recognition of that." 

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