TURKISH POLITICIAN APPEALS SWISS COURT DECISION ON ARMENIAN GENOCIDE, SAYS LAWYER
Published: Mar 12, 2007
A Turkish politician has appealed his racism conviction by a Swiss
court for denying that the early 20th century killing of Armenians
was genocide, his lawyer said Monday.
Laurent Moreillon said Dogu Perincek, the leader of the Turkish
Workers’ Party, made his appeal to the cantonal (state) court in
Vaud, where he was convicted by a lower tribunal earlier this week
and ordered to pay a fine of 3,000 Swiss francs (US$2,450; A1,870).
Perincek, who was also given a suspended penalty of 9,000 francs
(US$7,360; A5,600) and ordered to pay 1,000 francs to (US$820; A620)
to an Armenian association, had repeatedly denied during a visit to
Switzerland in 2005 that the World War I-era killings of up to 1.5
million Armenians amounted to genocide.
The case was seen as a test of whether it is a violation of
Switzerland’s anti-racism law to deny that the Turks committed
genocide in the killings. The legislation has previously been applied
to Holocaust denial.
The case has caused diplomatic tension between the Alpine republic and
Turkey, which insists Armenians were killed in civil unrest during
the tumultuous collapse of the Ottoman Empire and not in a planned
campaign of genocide.
Turkey called the case against Perincek "inappropriate, baseless and
debatable in every circumstance."