ANKARA: France in confusion after Armenian resolution – Turkish Amb

Anadolu Agency, Turkey
Dec 23 2011

France in confusion after Armenian resolution, says Turkish Ambassador Burcuoglu

Istanbul: Turkish ambassador in Paris, Tahsin Burcuoglu, said Friday
that the French were in confusion and felt embarrassment after an
Armenian resolution pertaining to the incidents of 1915 was adopted at
the French Parliament on Thursday.

Speaking to reporters at Istanbul’s Ataturk International Airport,
Burcuoglu said that “the French were now reckoning with each other”.

What was interesting on Thursday is that although the resolution was a
product of the French government, those opposing the resolution in the
French Parliament were also members of the government, Burcuoglu

We will now closely watch the process in Paris until February 22,
Burcuoglu also said.

The lower house of the French Parliament adopted on Thursday a
resolution that criminalizes rejection of Armenian allegations
pertaining to the incidents of 1915.

Only 70 out of 577 parliamentarians joined the voting of the
resolution which was adopted with majority of votes.

The resolution envisages “one-year prison term and 45,000 Euro fine
for those who deny genocide recognized by French laws.” French
Parliament had recognized so-called Armenian genocide in 1915 on
January 29, 2001.

The draft criminalizing the rejection of Armenian allegations had
first been approved in 2006, but it could not become a law as French
President Nicolas Sarkozy prevented its presentation to Senate.

Now, the senate’s approval is necessary to make the resolution a law.

Turkey strongly opposes the issue of the incidents of 1915 being used
as a tool in French politics. Many believe that French President
Sarkozy supports the Armenian resolution in order to garner support
from France’s Armenian population that number around 500,000.

France will hold the first round of next year’s presidential election
on April 22 and the second round run-off on May 6. Sarkozy is running
for a second term.

If the resolution is not adopted at the senate till February 22, 2012
when the parliament and senate will recess for presidential elections,
it will be invalid.

From: Baghdasarian