Parliament Passes Resolution on Armenians' Mass Extermination in Ottoman Empire in 1915-1922 Period

Parliament Passes Resolution on  Armenians' Mass Extermination in  Ottoman Empire in 1915-1922 Period

Parliament Passes Resolution on Armenians' Mass Extermination in Ottoman Empire in 1915-1922 Period

Sofia, April 24 (BTA) - Bulgaria's Parliament Friday passed a
resolution recognizing the mass extermination of Armenians in
the Ottoman Empire in the 1915-1922 period. The vote was 157 in
favour and 36 against.

"The extermination of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in
1915-1922 is identified by undeniable historic facts and
authentic documents," the resolution points out. "According to
the Bulgarian people's humane traditions and the obligations
assumed under the ratification of the UN instruments, Bulgaria
draws a distinction between the historical legacy of the Ottoman
Empire and the legacy of the Republic of Turkey and welcomes a
dialogue between Turkey and Armenia on a conclusive commitment
to the historic truth," the resolution reads.

The draft resolution on recognition of the Armenian genocide was
moved by the Ataka Parliamentary Group and was rephrased on
motions by Tsveta Karayancheva MP of GERB and Krassimira
Kovachka MP of the Bulgarian Democratic Centre. Karayancheva
moved that the word 'genocide' be replaced by the expression
'mass extermination'. On Kovachka's motion, two passages were
dropped from the reasoning to the draft: "The act entirely
satisfies the essential elements of the United Nations enacting
instruments: the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of
the Crime of Genocide (1948) and the Convention on the
Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and
Crimes Against Humanity (1968)" and "sharing the position of the
European Parliament in support of this dialogue". Ataka
objected to these revisions.

The resolution declared April 24 a Victims Remembrance Day.

After the vote, Parliament observed a minute of silence in
commemoration of the Armenian victims. The attending MPs of the
Movement of Rights and Freedoms walked out of the debating

Representatives of the Turkish Embassy in Sofia listened to the
debate from the visitors' gallery.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Boyko Borissov said that he
hopes that the political forces will recognize the Armenians'
mass extermination by consensus. He made this statement to
reporters in Parliament, emerging from consultations with the
GERB Parliamentary Group and Reformist Bloc Co-floor Leader
Radan Kanev at the office of National Assembly Chair Tsetska

Borissov specified that GERB had proposed a recognition of the
Armenians' mass extermination. "I said it very clearly: this is
the Bulgarian word or the Bulgarian words, or the Bulgarian
idiom for 'genocide," the PM pointed out.

He confirmed the clear distinction between the Ottoman Empire
and present-day Turkey.

Yerevan defines as 'genocide' the killing of a little over 1.5
million Armenians by Turkish troops during systematic
extermination operations in the 1915-1923 period. Ankara denies
this. According to the official position of the Turkish
authorities, killing people was not deliberately sought. Turkey
admits to the death of not more than 500,000 people, who fell
victim to sporadic armed groups and starvation.

The Armenian genocide has been recognized by a number of
countries, including Russia, France, Italy, Germany and Uruguay.
It was recently recognized by Pope Francis and the European

Source: Sofia