SWEDEN'S PRIME MINISTER
|ANKARA (AFP) - Sweden's Prime Minister has called his Turkish counterpart to distance himself from a parliament move branding the massacres of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as genocide, Ankara said Sunday.|
Sweden's Frederik Reinfeldt called Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday evening to voice "his sadness and say that his government absolutely did not share the decision," Erdogan's Office said in a statement.
Blaming the vote on "domestic politics," Reinfeldt said his government was "ready to do the necessary so that this unfounded decision does not harm bilateral relations," according to the text.
The Swedish Prime Minister also assured Erdogan that the Parliament's move did not weaken Stockholm's support of Turkey's EU accession ambitions.
Going against the government's advice, the Swedish Parliament voted by a narrow margin on Thursday to recognise the "Genocide of Armenians" during the breakup of the Ottoman Empire.
Ankara quickly recalled its Ambassador and cancelled a visit by Erdogan to Sweden after the vote, which came just days after a similar move by a US Congressional panel.
In remarks to Sweden's TT news agency, Reinfeldt said that he had expressed to his Turkish counterpart "regrets following the Parliament's decision because it politicises history".
According to the Turkish statement, Erdogan "strongly insisted on the disappointment" felt in Turkey over the vote, while recognising that the government was against it.
He also called for "measures to repair the situation."
Press release:European Armenian Federation for Justice & Democracy
|Brussels - Stockholm - March 11, 2010 - Spearheaded by a Swedish MP from the left party, Mr. Hans Linde, the Swedish Parliament adopted on Thursday, March 11, 2010 a resolution recognising the Armenian, Assyrian/Syriac/Chaldean and Pontic Greek genocides. This makes Sweden the 11th European country to do so, following Germany, Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, France, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, the Netherlands, Slovakia, as well as the European Parliament.|
With this vote, the Parliament confirms that Sweden must recognise the 1915 Armenian, Assyrian/Syriac/Chaldean and Pontic Greek genocide; that it must work with the European Union and the United Nations for an international recognition as well as with Turkey, so that the latter recognises these genocides.
“We congratulate the Assyro-Chaldean and the Pontic Greek populations, who along with the Armenians, were victims of genocide perpetrated by the Turkish government. We commend the Swedish members of Parliament for their courage against the pressures of the Turkish lobby” declared Hilda Tchoboian, President of the European Armenian Federation for Justice and Democracy.
The European Armenian Federation wishes to underscore that this vote, taken in spite of pressures and threats from the Turkish government, one week after the vote of the US House of Representatives, highlights the failure of Turkey’s policy of denial.
“Turkey manipulated the public opinion by signing the protocols with Armenia in hopes of burying the Genocide issue; but its position became intolerable in the face of the inescapable pursuit for historical truth” announced Hilda Tchoboian.
The Federation calls on the Swedish government to apply the decisions of this parliamentary resolution in its bilateral relations with Turkey, but also in its European policy, by applying them in its official position regarding Turkey’s accession to the European Union.
A DAY FOR CYPRUS
MP VARTKES MAHDESSIAN TO SPONSOR ANNUAL VISITS OF NAREG GRADUATES TO ARMENIA
|Gibrahayer e-magazine - Nicosia - A unique opportunity for all graduates of Nareg schools is a reality as of this year, by the kind support of Armenian MP Vartkes Mahdessian, in cooperation with the government of the Republic of Armenia.|
What in the past, was a privilege for the very few, has become a reality for the many. Starting from the summer of 2010, graduates of Nareg Schools will visit Armenia for two weeks every summer, with Vartkes Mahdessian covering all the costs of their air tickets and visas, while arrangements have been made by the Armenian MP, that the government of the Republic of Armenia (will) covers the costs of food, accommodation, as well as visits to historical sites.
As Mahdessian told Gibrahayer yesterday, the above was verbally conveyed to the Chairman of the Nareg Schools Committee a month ago, and in writing yesterday.
FACING UP TO HISTORY
The Economist, March 11 2010 - Not for the first time, Armenians sense a moment of vindication in their struggle for the acknowledgement of the tragedy that befell their forebears during the first World War. Turkey is angry. And America's administration is straining to limit the damage.
GENOCIDE MUSEUM DIRECTOR HAYK DEMOYAN DELIVERS LECTURE ON MUSEUM ACTIVITIES AND ON ARMENIAN-TURKISH PROTOCOLS
Press release by The Committee of the Kalaydjian Foundation - 16 March - On Saturday the 13th of March, the Director of the Armenian Genocide Museum in Yerevan Hayk Demoyan, gave the Armenian Cypriot community a detailed and highly informative lecture on the history and activities of the Genocide Museum and on the possible consequences of the Armenian-Turkish Protocols signed last year. The lecture, which also included a slide-show presentation of photographs and newly-acquired material, took place in front of around 120 community members and was organised by the Kalaydjian Foundation under the auspices of His Eminence Archbishop Varoujan. The event was attended by the Armenian Representative Vartkes Mahdessian, by representatives of all political parties and organisations, and by the former Assistant Secretary General of the UN Benon Sevan, amongst others.
Khosrov and Shabouh - Editorial by Jean Ipdjian
| Yesterday I watched the video clip of Crosswalk, the current affairs program of RT Moscow, presented by Mr. Peter Lavelle. The title of the program was Turkey’s Burden and it was a discussion regarding the recent adoption of Resolution 252 for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide by the US House of Representatives foreign affairs committee about ten days ago and the successful vote of the Swedish Parliament for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide despite the wishes of both governments. As expected, both have resulted into the recall of Turkey’s ambassadors in both countries ‘for consultations’. As expected Turkey has gone into it’s customary rage, which is the given norm every time a country recognises the Armenian Genocide.|
The panel of Crosstalk consisted of Mr. Robert Fisk, who is the Middle East correspondent of The Independent newspaper, Yelena Kanga a member of the Crosstalk team, Mr. David Sultzman of the Turkish Coalition of America of Washington and Mr. Sinan Ulgen of the Istanbul Economy Consulting from Brussels. In short, Mrs. Khanga was presenting the Russian stance towards the Genocide, Mr. Fisk considered it an undeniable fact while Mr. Saltzman and Mr. Ulgen were the rejectionists. Actually not the rejectionists, because for some time now Turkey, as part of it’s newly tailored Sunday attire, no longer publicly rejects the accusations per say, but suggests that the whole matter should be examined by historians and proved to be one way or the other. Just the same way as, she publicly promises to do her utmost to assist in the finding of a just and durable solution to the Cyprus problem. Just the same way as she acted in her Sunday attire in the rapprochement talks with neighbouring Armenia, which resulted in the signing of the infamous Protocols.
Most probably, as Mr. Fisk in the video clip pointed out the resolution has very little chance of passing from the full House and much less from the Senate, pointing out that Secretary of State Mrs. Clinton would make sure of that. And again as in the past, the unashamed hypocrisy of successive US administrations and presidents would raise its ugly head.
So why the hysteria?
Why is Turkey so adamantly horrified of the prospect of the recognition of the Armenian Genocide by different countries, as is happening one by one, and specially from a giant and sole super power like the United States.
The answer is simple. If there was a Genocide, then there are people, people who seized to exist in a matter of weeks and months, and these used to live somewhere, had property, goods, animals. So what happened to all this wealth? And more importantly, these people lived on LAND. That is the key issue which has and continues to petrify successive Turkish governments.
And as for the Sunday attire that nowadays Turkey likes to put on in front of her European neighbours, such matters as the recognition of the Armenian Genocide, or complications in the negotiations in Cyprus, which inadvertently result in her taking off her Sunday attire and showing the ‘yataghan’ (Turkish scimitar) in her belt, enormously frightens the Europeans, even friends such as the United Kingdom, thus making it more difficult for them to accept her as fellow ‘Europeans’. Something, which seems to be part and parcel of her long-term strategy.
Leaders of neighbouring countries who have issues with Turkey, and truthfully I can’t think of one except pseudo-neighbour Azerbaijan, should bear in mind the ‘yataghan’ underneath the Sunday attire and should not add feathers to that seemingly peaceful and good-neighbourly appearance.
Once upon a time in ancient Armenia we had a king called Khosrov. After one of the continuous battles with the Persian Shah Shabouh, Khosrov was beaten and taken to Tabriz to the Shah. There Khosrov started begging the Shah’s forgiveness and promising that he would become a loyal vassal of the Shah and Persia. The wily Shabouh decided to test him. So he ordered the ground before his throne to be half covered by Persian soil and the other half by soil brought from Armenia. He then orders for Khosrov to be brought to him.
He takes Khosrov by the arm and starts discussing with him future plans, walking from one side to the other on the different soils. Khosrov shows himself to be like honey when on Persian soil, promising loyalty and friendship to the Shah, but turns into a raging lion as soon as he steps over the Armenian soil. Seeing this, the Shah orders him to be skinned alive and his skin to be filled with hay and hung from the gates of the city.
Maybe Europeans should try this on Mr. Erdogan, on Mr. Gul and all the other high ranking officials in Turkey? As for us Armenians, we should apply this test to all the aspiring politicians bearing gifts to us for our votes.
|Advice to Prime Minister Erdogan:|
"Continue Denying the Armenian Genocide"
Prominent Turkish commentator Can Dundar wrote in Haber1 an article titled: "Are we going to recall all our Ambassadors?" He stated that, at this rate, by the time the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide rolls around in 2015, there won’t be a single country left not accusing Turkey of genocide. Isn't it about time that we search out what dirty work our fathers did 95 years ago? Shouldn't we ask what did we do wrong, Dundar implored.
7or.am - Սերժ Սարգսյանի «ֆուտբոլային» դիվանագիտությունից մնացին միայն գնդակները
Read in this week's PHILELEFTHEROS Periodical
you can also read the Periodical here: www.activeedgemedia.com/mail/vahanbedelian.pdf
|News in Brief by Sevag Devletian|
|With "A musical pilgrimage across five continents", the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra celebrates Easter, under conductor Spiros Pisinos and soprano Sona Gargaloyan and tenor Berj Karazian|
|Quote of the month|
"In 1915 the Turkish Government began and ruthlessly carried out the infamous general massacre and deportation of Armenians in Asia Minor. Three or four hundred thousand men, women, and children escaped into Russian territory and others into Persia or Mesopotamia; but the clearance of the race from Asia Minor was about as complete as such an act, on a scale so great, could well be… . There is no reasonable doubt that this crime was planned and executed for political reasons. The opportunity presented itself for clearing Turkish soil of a Christian race!"
|Letters to The Editor|
I like the articles, but I don’t like the photo-montage of Obama as a Nazi leader and I doubt Robert Fisk would approve of it.
First, despite the fact that Obama’s games with the Genocide are shameful, the man is no Nazi, he hasn’t built death camps and doesn’t speak of sub-races, of vermin and of Lebensraum. Criticism and insult or insulting exaggeration are different things, and the latter, as a rule, does a disservice to its author. Consider Erdogan’s credibility when he calls the killing of 200 hundred Ughurs a “genocide”, or what it sounds like when Israeli soldiers are called “SS”.
Second, this amounts to minimise or relativise the actual crimes committed by actual Nazis and is awful for Holocaust survivors. Therefore it is likely to alienate our Jewish supporters and other friends. Given that our cause is 100% right, there is no need to resort to such cheap illustrations. Instead, we will be best served by dignity at all times. I have heard that the debate between Sevan Nichanian and Halacoglu was a disaster, that Nichanian became angry and insulted Halacoglu, and that consequently the Turkish viewers didn’t even feel like looking up the Genocide somewhere or finding a book to learn something about it. Let’s avoid such mistakes.
Sorry for being straightforward. But go on with the good work. Best regards- Virginie Papazian, Marseilles
My patriotic priorities compel me to write to your magazine to submit my views if I may, on the published article titled "Meddling by Armenian non-political organisations in political affairs benefits Turkey, not Armenia" of last Thursday,4/3/2010.
Thanks to the author of above article the following observation would deem appropriate if we consider the following:
As a consequence of genocide a great majority of us live in so many different countries where a number of "make do" communal centres were established to serve the needs of the local community.Of course, these centres served well in the interest and benefit of their communities, such as religious,national, cultural,sporting and political activities which were established barely to cope with the then local basic needs. As we all know, the above mentioned centres came into existence with a lot of volunteer hard work. It is also a known fact that some centres followed diverse political ideologies with active members being too busy pushing forward in what they believed to be right. For many decades, however it may be right or not it is not within the scope of my views.
Because of our national tragedy the Diaspora and Armenia proper suffered and survived hardship for almost a century starting from scratch with bare essentials, of course, this never helped in policy making to tackle future issues. We need to move ahead and need guidance and directions, but there already too many of them around, well, it is evident that we need a national code of conduct so to speak, then let us explore what we are missing. We are missing a link, the missing link is Infra Structure, Infra Structure for the Diaspora, Infra Structure for Armenia, (the Armenian constitution would need to align itself with Diaspora Infra Structure). Infrastructure is a unified policy for plans, decisions and actions.
Infrastructures meet on a platform, the platform is the launching pad with the ultimate goal for best action results. A platform connecting such Infra Structures is a powerful tool for Diaspora-Armenia liaison for optimal strategy and action, in that it helps make sound decisions in taking appropriate steps towards gaining the best possible recognition for our claims with commanding global respect. The Diaspora may have no less academics, historians and Geo politicians who enjoy a broader view and expertise to go with as compared with those in Armenia. So far so good! The Infra Structures promote and efficiently accelerate understanding external issues for measures to be taken by way of Armenia-Diaspora consultations to help make the best possible global representation on a unified national front to pursue our claims and settle disputes, (for this matter we will need the services of most expert negotiators and facilitators).
The point is to put in place and implement a liaison strategy that would connect and unify the efforts of each and every centre to create a global Armenian Infra Structure irrespective of diversity of ideology, for it to lay the groundwork for a policy standard to serve as a national guidance, specifically on external issues. Our lobbying actions would then generate enough impact on the political arena to make ourselves heard most effectively. I very seriously believe we all have to take immediate action to establish a global Infra Structure if we are to avoid any such spurious repetitions of unqualified and unprofessional misrepresentations to the detriment of our national cause as was mentioned in the above article.
Infrastructure is a plan of action and is independent of ideologies, because we have to plan ahead we have have to avoid being so romantic, we need to do what we have to do today without delay and without getting side tracked for once.
With kindest regards - Barkev Sarkissian - Alexandria-Egypt
Some of you have already received this letter and helped Elena. Thank you so much for your contribution. Unfortunately, we are still far from raising the amount that Elena needs and I decided to ask again for your support.
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Please consider contributing to help Elena. You can make your contribution by wire transfer in rubles, dollars or euros (bank details available at the link above) or make a cash donation - we'll be happy to pick it up and deliver it to Elena.
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I am very saddened by the fact that yet another and one of the last green areas of the capital Yerevan is destructed in order to "make room" for the construction of a car parking of an elite building of the elite (according to some reports the residents of the building are "top level" government officials). In a developed country, if something similar happened the mayor and all the ministers involved would tender their resignation, however in Armenia, it seems nobody is punished whatsoever.
Hagop Manougian - Nicosia
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