Belgian Draft Law Proposes Criminalizing Genocide Denial



BRUSSELS, MAY 12, ARMENPRESS: Belgium’s Reformist
Movement party proposed a draft law in Parliament,
which would expand the definition of genocide denial
to the Armenian genocide. It is already a crime to
deny the Holocaust in Belgium, and the lawmakers who
proposed the bill want to extend the law to denial of
the Armenian genocide as well.
The Belgian Parliament failed to enact the same law
two years ago, fearing reprisals from Turkey. Meantime
Turkey’s ambassadors to Canada and France have
returned to their posts after being recalled to Ankara
because of disagreements on whether the massacres of
Armenians during World War I constituted genocide, a
Turkish diplomat was quoted by France Press as saying
A first reading of the French bill, proposed by the
opposition Socialist Party, is scheduled for May 18.
It follows a 2001 French law officially recognizing
the Armenian genocide and, if approved, the new bill
would provide for a five-year sentence and a 45,000
Euro (57,000 Dollar) fine for any person who denies
that the 1915-17 massacres constitute genocide.
Turkish Lawmaker visiting France said they “relayed
the Turkish people’s strong reaction to our French
colleagues” and warned that there were calls for a
boycott of French goods in Turkey and that
Turkish-French relations would be severely harmed if
the bill is passed, Turkey’s Anatolia news agency
Turkey was also angered when Canadian Prime
Minister Steven Harper reaffirmed the Armenian
genocide during commemorations of the 91st anniversary
of the Genocide on April 24. The Turkish foreign
ministry said at the time that Harper’s words were
“appalling” and would “negatively affect” bilateral
ties. In protest, Turkey withdrew from a planned
multi-nation military exercise to be held in Canada,
officials in Ottawa said on Wednesday.
In 2002, the Canadian Senate recognized the
Armenian genocide as the first genocide of the 20th
century and the House of Commons followed suit two
years later.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

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Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS