French bill on Armenian deaths worries Turkey
Turkish academics have warned that if the opposition proposal becomes law, it would be "disastrous" for the democratic movement in Turkey. It could also cause economic disruption, with business leaders warning that French products could be boycotted in Turkey.
Ankara recalled its ambassador to Paris briefly last week "for consultations" in protest at today's vote. It also pulled back its ambassador to Ottawa, following comments by the Canadian prime minister that appeared to express support for Armenia's view that the killings were genocide.
The Armenian issue is particularly sensitive in France because of its 450,000-strong Armenian community.
Armenians claim up to 1.5m people died in 1915-18. Turkey denies genocide, and admits only that hundreds of thousands of both Armenians and Turks died, largely due to civil war and famine.
Halil Berktay, one of the first Turkish historians to break the taboo on Armenia, said in yesterday's Le Monde that the effects of thenew French law would be "disastrous".
He warned that Ankara could retaliate with a law criminalising recognition of the genocide. "There is a strong nationalist, anti-European wave in Turkey at the moment." he said.
The French bill would punish denial of the genocide with one year in prison or a Euros 45,000 fine, matching the penalty for denial of the Jewish Holocaust.
comments powered by Disqus
- OAH issues a statement in support of the AP standards
- Daniel Pipes says in interview that the absence of anti-Israel protests in Muslim countries is highly significant
- A historian who studies China has discovered an overlooked angle in the debate about the Middle East. Could he have figured out a key reason for Iraq’s failure to defeat ISIS?
- American Historical Association backs revision of the AP course in history
- Middle East Scholars and Librarians Call for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions