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18:32 18 October
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Former Turkish ambassador to Paris: France’s adoption of bill criminalizing ‘genocide’ denial is not due to love to Armenia - INTERVIEW

Istanbul. Mayis Alizade – APA. Former Turkish Ambassador to Paris, former Istanbul deputy of the Republican People's Party (CHP ) Osman Korutürk’s interview to APA

- After 3 years and a half, the French parliament again approved the bill criminalizing the ‘genocide’ denial. What do so many insistences aim?

 

- This is an issue completely relating to personal interest of French politicians, not for their love to Armenians. There are Armenians in France's different regions who own great wealth. They can influence the policy. One of senior advisors of Hollande in the election was Armenian. Hollande had promised Armenians that this bill will be adopted. After the parliament adopted the bill with the initiative of a politician like Sarkozi, who did not obey rules of law, the Constitutional council of France had rejected the bill because it was against freedom of speech and expression, human rights. We were happy at that time that the Constitutional council of France foregrounded the human rights, France is the cradle of the freedom. Now, the bill with the same content was adopted by the parliament with the initiative of Hollande. Compared to previous bill, a small amendment was made in it: to criminalize ‘genocide’ denial, the ‘genocide’ does not need to be confirmed by any independent court. Therefore, despite no independent court passed ‘genocide’ decision about 1915 events, they planned to include it in the list of other formal genocides. This time, the Constitutional council of France may not reject the bill. Turkish government has sent the representatives of other three parties in the parliament, who are engaged in this issue, to relevant countries to struggle politically, diplomatically and legally so far before appearance of such issues.

 

- I would ask it. Is the government now paying less attention to this issue? What can you say about it?

 

- In the past, we - MPs from AKP (the Justice and Development Party), CHP (Republican People's Party) and MHP (Nationalist Movement Party) were visiting the western countries to explain right position of Turkey about ‘Armenian genocide’. Our works were useful. We had meetings was in Italian parliament and senate in 2015. Not, the government is not paying attention to these issues, and therefore, does not organize visits of the parties in the parliament to foreign countries. Whereas, Turkey now has a objective decision of the European Court of Human Rights on Doğu Perinçek’s complaint, which is so important for Turkey. Government and the Grand National Assembly of Turkey must pay more attention to these issues. We even did not see the government’s activity on the eve of decision passed by German Bundestag in early June. My words also concern opposition parties in the parliament. In our day, CHP was following these issues seriously and systematically.

 

- Did the Turkish government feel assurance after ‘Armenian genocide’ slanders could not create a necessary effect last year? Because, we saw Telet Pasha Committee in Berlin for objection on the eve of German Bundestag’s decision.  

 

- We must comprehensively inform the French and German citizens of Turkish origin. For this purpose, not only our diplomatic missions, but NGOs also must establish close ties with those citizens. French citizens of Turkish origin must be able to contact with parliamentarians and senators, vote for them after they adopt these citizens’ conditions in the election campaigns. In order to have an influence on the legislative and executive bodies, they must provide any support to European countries’ citizens of Turkish origin.

 

- You did not mention HDP (Peoples' Democratic Party) while speaking about joint position of parties in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. Some HDP leaders meet with Dashnak organizations in the US and speak about "cooperation with them in determination of Turkey’s future" while Turkey struggles against these injustices. Even, there are HDP members who hold actions inside the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. Why does not the leadership of the parliament react necessarily?

 

- Turkey is a country where a number of issues can be discussed by policy. In this case, it’s unpleasant that the MPs, regardless of party-membership, hold discussions abroad. Everyone must bring their issue up for discussion in the parliament. 

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