FRENCH BILL CRIMINALIZING DENIAL OF ARMENIAN GENOCIDE ANGERS TURKEY
Dec 20 2011
The French parliament is considering criminalizing the denial of
the mass killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks during World War I as
genocide, a newspaper reported Tuesday.
But Turkish President Abdullah Gul is urging France to drop the bill
that would slap citizens who deny the killings as genocide with a
one-year prison term and a heavy fine, according to BBC News.
Turkey is warning French parliament that the legislation would gravely
impact ties between the countries.
Armenians say up to 1.5 million people died during mass deportations.
Turkey puts the figure at closer to 300,000.
Ankara says Turks were also killed when Armenians rose up against
the Ottoman Empire during World War I when Russian troops invaded
eastern Anatolia, now eastern Turkey, according the newspaper.
In a statement, President Gul said the proposed bill denied Turkey
the freedom to reject “unfair and groundless accusations”.
— Katie Landan, Times Community News