AAA: Armenian Genocide Resolution Introduced in The Senate

March 20, 2012
Contact: Press Department
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (202) 393-3434



Washington, DC – Yesterday, Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) along with
Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) officially introduced a new Armenian Genocide
Resolution (S.Res. 399) in the United States Senate, reported the Armenian
Assembly of America (Assembly).

Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Dianne Feinstein
(D-CA), Carl Levin (D-MI), Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), Jack Reed (D-RI), and
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) joined as original cosponsors. In addition,
Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), Chair of the Democratic Policy Committee,
has also agreed to cosponsor the bill.

“It is time for the United States to join the nineteen nations including
Belgium, Canada, France, Italy and the European Union that have formally
recognized the actions carried out by the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1923
as genocide,” Senator Menendez said. “The Armenian Genocide is a historical
fact and was one of the incidents upon which the Genocide Convention was
predicated. Only by accurately acknowledging the crimes of the past can we
ever hope to move forward in a legitimate manner and prevent such human
rights crimes from happening in the future.”

“The Armenian Genocide is well-documented and formally recognized by 11
NATO allies and the European Union. This resolution accurately
characterizes the events of 1915-1923 as a genocide, honors the memory of
the victims, and strengthens America’s moral leadership on human rights and
the prevention of mass atrocities around the world,” said a spokesman for
Senator Kirk.

As reported last week, the new Senate resolution is similar to the House
version, and adds a key finding from the 1951 U.S. filing before the
International Court of Justice concerning the Convention on the Prevention
and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Specifically, the document
highlighted the fact that “the Roman persecution of the Christians, the
Turkish massacre of Armenians, the extermination of millions of Jews and
Poles by the Nazis are outstanding examples of the crime of genocide.”

“We commend Senator Menendez and Senator Kirk for introducing this
important human rights legislation,” stated the Assembly’s Executive
Director Bryan Ardouny. “We also recognize and appreciate the support of
those Senators who joined as original cosponsors. We will continue our
advocacy efforts to ensure additional cosponsors, and urge its timely
adoption,” added Ardouny.

The first step for the bill is the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,
where Senator Menendez serves as a Subcommittee Chairman. The Committee is
chaired by Senator John Kerry (D-MA), who has a long record in support of
U.S. affirmation of the Armenian Genocide.

Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest
Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and
awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3)
tax-exempt membership organization.


NR#: 2012-009

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