Sarkozy Urges Turkey to Recognize Armenian Genocide

Posted October 6th, 2011 at 5:45 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

French President Nicolas Sarkozy is urging Turkey to “revisit its history” and recognize the deaths of Armenians nearly 100 years ago as genocide.

Mr. Sarkozy said during a visit to Armenia Thursday that the genocide of Armenians is a historical reality recognized by France. He calls collective denial worse than that by individuals.

The French president said all great countries, like Turkey, do the honorable thing by revisiting their history. He said the French parliament could consider making genocide denial a crime in France, just like denying the Nazi Holocaust of Jews.

Armenians say as many as 1.5 million were murdered by Ottoman Turks before and during World War I and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire.

Turkey denies the claim. It calls the death toll exaggerated and says the dead were victims of civil war and unrest. Turkey says any country recognizing an Armenian genocide faces a downgrade in relations.