ANKARA: ‘Genocide’ Bill In France Restriction On Freedom Of Expressi

‘GENOCIDE’ BILL IN FRANCE RESTRICTION ON FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION

Today’s Zaman, Turkey
May 24 2007

The French Parliament’s approval of a bill in October of last year that
made it a crime to deny that Ottoman Turks committed "genocide" against
Armenians during World War I was listed by Amnesty International as
a restriction on freedom of expression in the Amnesty International
Report 2007, the organization’s annual assessment of human rights
worldwide, released in London on Wednesday.

The bill was the sole item highlighted under the title "Restriction on
freedom of expression" in the country report for France. "On 12 October
parliament adopted a bill that would make it a crime to contest that
the massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in 1915 constituted
genocide. The new crime would be punishable by up to five years’
imprisonment and a fine. The bill was awaiting approval by the Senate
and the President," the report noted.

The bill has angered Turkey, which categorically refutes genocide
charges.

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