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Turkey Rights Group Disappointed in ECHR Decision, Urges Appeal

Human Rights Association of Turkey Urges Switzerland to Appeal European Court Decision on Genocide Denial

ISTANBUL, Turkey (A.W.)–The Human Rights Association (HRA) in Turkey issued a letter addressed to the Swiss Minister of Justice, expressing the organization’s disappointment with the decision of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Armenian Genocide denial.

“As human rights defenders in Turkey, we are the most immediate, most direct witnesses of how the denial of the genocide against Amenians and other Christian ethnic groups of Asia Minor has right from the start generated an anti-democratic system, allowing racist hatred, hate crimes and violation of the freedom of expression and the human rights in general,” argued HRA in a copy of the letter received by the Armenian Weekly.

HRA concluded: “In the name of human rights, of the struggle against racist hatred and of justice in Turkey and elsewhere, we would like to express our belief that the Swiss Court’s decision to penalize Doğu Perinçek’s denialism was a step to protect us all, the entire humanity against racism, and our heartfelt support to Swiss Court’s exercising its right to appeal against the ECHR decision dated 17 December 2013.”

Below is the full text of the letter.

***

To:

Mrs. Simonetta Sommaruga

Minister of Justice and Police of the Swiss Confederation

Prof. Dr. Frank Schürmann

Chief of the Division European Law and International Protection of Human Rights, the Federal Office for Justice

We, as the Human Rights Association in Turkey (HRA), are writing this letter to you to express our disappointment at the European Court of Human Rights’ (ECHR) decision dated 17 December 2013 rejecting the Swiss court decisions of 2007 to penalize Doğu Perinçek’s denial of the Armenian genocide and our unconditional and firm support of Swiss jurisdiction’s using its right to appeal against ECHR’s decision.

As human rights defenders in Turkey, we are the most immediate, most direct witnesses of how the denial of the genocide against Armenians and other Christian ethnic groups of Asia Minor has right from the start generated an anti-democratic system, allowing racist hatred, hate crimes and violation of the freedom of expression and the human rights in general.

In the case of the successive governments of the Republic of Turkey, the ultra-nationalists and the Turkish public loyal to the official thesis, denial is not just to say “We didn’t do it” or “What we did was no genocide.” Here in Turkey denial means criminalizing the victims and encouraging hatred towards Armenians. In other words denial becomes the continuation of the genocide and the genocidal intent in Turkey. In order to deny the genocide, the system argues and urges the society to believe that:

(i)                  It is the Armenians to blame, i.e., they deserved what they got.

(ii)                Armenians are the enemies of Turkish people.

(iii)               Armenians stabbed the Ottomans and the Turks in the back, they are treacherous and what was done to them was a war-time necessity for the survival of Turkey.

(iv)              Armenians, both at home and abroad, are still a threat to the Republic of Turkey and Turks.

Not a passive, peaceful denial but aggressive onslaught

Consequently in Turkey denial is not just a passive position, but it is an active aggression, creating a racist environment fully exposed to sheer violence. This has paved the way for Armenians in Turkey to be treated as a “fifth column” throughout the Republican history, to be discriminated against, to be destined to lead their lives in constant fear as their lives were threatened during various nationalist upheavals and pogroms that took place during the Republican period. The word “Armenian” has become a word of curse so widespread to include an interior minister of the Republic who openly used it in public (in 1997 by Meral Akşener). This racist hateful environment led to not only verbal but physical assaults on Armenians. Hrant Dink, the chief editor of Agos, the first and only Armenian weekly newspaper published in Turkish in Republican history, and a prominent supporter of human rights, democracy and freedom of expression was assassinated in cold blood in 2007, although he had always been against hatred and animosity on the part of Armenians towards Turks, advocating instead a reconciliatory stance of mutual understanding. The Armenian private Sevag Şahin Balıkçı, was shot dead on 24 April 2011 (i.e. on the day when Armenians worldwide commemorate the beginning of the genocide of 1915) while doing his military service in the Turkish army in southeast province Batman by another Turkish private. The investigation leading to trial was totally untrustworthy, as the witnesses’ superiors putting pressure on them to confirm the suspect’s statement that it was an “accident” was reported in the newspapers. The court decided that the intentional murder was a result of “gross carelessness,” disregarding all evidence that it was a hate crime, and sentenced the suspect to only 5 years’ imprisonment. Another incident took place on 26 February 2012 when, orchestrated by Turkish and Azerbaijani governments, a big demonstration took place on Taksim square, the largest and most central square in Istanbul, for condemning the “Khojaly Genocide,” the massacre of civilians in Karabagh that Armenian and former Soviet troops allegedly committed ten years before. During the rally, which was announced days before by means of posters bearing the slogan: “Don’t believe Armenian lies” posted all throughout Istanbul, anti-Armenian slogans containing hate speech were chanted and professionally printed signs that read “You are all Armenians, you are all bastards” were carried, in reaction to the slogan “We are all Armenians,” which had been chanted at the funeral of Hrant Dink. In 2013, within one and a half month, four elderly Armenian women were attacked in Samatya, a neighborhood with a high agglomeration of Armenians, cruelly beaten, until one of them died from heavy beating with numerous deep fatal cuts on her body inflicted by a sharp object. In short, persistent denial of genocide is the main reason for the Armenians’ threatened existence in Turkey, a reason provided by the official narrative itself.

On the other hand, the ECHR decision establishes that the Armenian genocide is somehow disputable, arguing that the denial of events which are not qualified as a genocide cannot provoke racist hatred.

However this is not what Doğu Perinçek and the “Talaat Pasha Committee” (named after Talaat, the main author of the Armenian genocide), of which he is one of the leaders have been doing since the Committee’s inception. They deny all the sufferings and horrible massacres—genocide or not—and thus openly insult the victims and their descendants. They deny all the sufferings of the Armenian people under Turkish rule and declare that what had happened to them is an “imperialist lie.” They deny the extermination of the Armenian people and their civilization, playing a vital role in the Ottoman Empire not only demographically, but economically, culturally. In other words, it is not a question of naming what happened to Armenians, it is a question of denying their very existence, their historical heritage and the enormous contribution they made to the country they were an integral part of.

Talaat Pasha Committee already condemned by the European Parliament

Perhaps most important of all, is the European Parliament’s resolution dated 27 September 2006 on the EC Progress Report on Turkey, where Turkey was called to put an end to the racist and xenophobic Talaat Pasha Committee’s activities. The according paragraph reads: “[The European Parliament] strongly condemns the xenophobic and racist Talaat Pacha Committee, run by extreme right-wing organisations, for gravely infringing European principles, and the denialist demonstrations in Lyon and Berlin organised by those same organisations; calls on Turkey to abolish this committee and to end its activities.” (See: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+TA+P6-TA-2006-0381+0+DOC+XML+V0//EN#def_1_2)

It is clear that the Talaat Pasha Committee where Doğu Perinçek was one of the founders and leaders was condemned with the above words by the European Parliament itself. We, as the human rights defenders of Turkey would expect the ECHR to take into consideration the European Parliament’s official views as referred to above.

Coming back to the ECHR decision, we would like to draw your attention to the opposing opinion of two ECHR judges. The main arguments in their dissenting opinion were (paraphrased by ourselves in English based on the original document in French) as follows:

  • To accuse the victims of distorting history is an invitation to most violent racist defamation and hate. The sufferings of an Armenian due to the Ottoman Empire’s genocide policy is not less serious than those of a Jew under the Nazi’s genocidal policies. Denial of the Meds Yeghern (“Great enormity,” i.e. “infamous crime” in Armenian) is not less dangerous than the denial of Shoah.
  • The defendant has openly denied the Armenian genocide as an “international lie,” accused the Armenian people of aggression towards the Turkish state and stated that he supported Talaat Pasha’s ideas. His statements provoke a grave intolerance and hatred against a defenseless minority. The Defendant declared that he would never recognize the Armenian genocide even if an expert or academic committee decides on the existence of such a genocide.
  • Expressions such as “international lie,” “historic lie,” “imperialist lie” obviously go beyond the acceptable boundaries of freedom [of] expression, because these expressions declare the victims to be “liars” and suggest an international conspiracy against Turkey or Turks. Besides, D. Perinçek’s identification with a major genocide perpetrator, who in 1919 was sentenced to death for crimes against humanity by an Ottoman court makes the situation even more repugnant.

The dissenting judges refer in their statement to our Association’s press release of 24 April 2006 (the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide) as follows (again a paraphrase of the original document in French):

“Tolerance to denialism is to ‘kill the victims for the second time,’ as Elie Wiesel puts it, or ‘denialism is part of the genocide and enables the perpetuation of the genocide. Denial of genocide is in itself a violation of human rights,” as Human Rights Association, Turkey, had declared in their press release dated 24 April 2006 for the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide.”

Talaat Pasha Committee: an organisation of violent action

Genocide denial, as indicated above, directly contributes to the racist hatred environment in Turkey. Furthermore, the Talaat Pasha Committee is anything else than an organisation of peaceful “thought,” or a think tank. It operates on active, sometimes violent militant denialism. Members of the Labour Party led also by Doğu Perinçek have raided and sabotaged meetings related to the Armenian “question.” In 2005 for the first time in Turkey a conference had been organised with the title “Ottoman Armenians during the decline of the Ottoman Empire.” Although the term genocide didn’t appear neither in the conference title, nor in any of the papers presented there, the Labour Party militants, who would soon become part of the Talaat Pasha Committee demonstrated outside the conference building, shouting denialist slogans and hatred towards the organizers, throwing eggs and tomatoes against those who left the conference. The Committee organised demonstrations in 2007 in France, Germany and Switzerland to protest against “Armenian genocide lies,” insulting genocide victims’ memories, hurting the feelings of their children and grandchildren.  Doğu Perinçek’s Labour Party members had in 2009 also staged a demonstration against our press conference in Ankara. The meeting was hosted by our association HRA and the Ankara Initiative for Freedom of Expression on Friday June 26, 2009. Our guests were Lord Avebury, the then vice-chairman of the Human Rights Group in the British Parliament, and historian Ara Sarafian from the Gomidas Institute, London, the publisher of the uncensored edition (2000; 2005) of the 1916 parliamentary “Blue Book,” titled The Treatment of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire 1915-16, a collection of first-hand testimonies of the Armenian genocide compiled by Viscount Bryce and Arnold Toynbee. In the press conference it was declared that the copies of the Turkish translation of the book were sent to the members of the Turkish Parliament (who in 2005 had signed a letter to the British Parliament arguing that the Blue Book was a wartime propaganda material and a mere fabrication, and for that reason the current British parliament should formally withdraw it) “in an effort to enable them to be better informed about their subject matter.” While the press conference was going on, the Labour Party members gathered in front of our Human Rights Association offices in Ankara, chanted slogans against “false Armenian genocide allegations,” harassing and alarming both the audience and our guests from abroad, Sarafian and Lord Avebury. In the meantime, the copies of the “Blue Book” sent were not delivered to the Turkish parliamentarians, thus it became clear that the Turkish Grand National Assembly refused to discuss the witness reports in the book.  .

ECHR decision encouraged racist denialism

What is very alarming and unacceptable is that the ECHR’s decision to acquit Doğu Perinçek has fueled hostility against Armenians in Turkey. The Talaat Pasha Committee held a meeting for the first time after many years, on 19 January 2014, on the 7th anniversary of Hrant Dink’s assassination. The headline of the press report read: “This is only a beginning. New victories are on the way!” It is reported that Doğu Perinçek, sentenced to 117 years’ imprisonment in Turkey, had reportedly sent a message to the meeting saying: “We will now get out of the circle [that limits our mobility] and encircle/besiege Turkey’s enemies and win victories on every front.” In the statement issued during this meeting the Committee misled the Turkish public by claiming that the ECHR decision had confirmed that the Armenian genocide was a lie, whereas in fact the Court only ruled that the Armenian genocide is open to debate and its denial was within the boundaries of freedom of speech.

Members of Doğu Perinçek’s Labour Party reappeared right after the ECHR decision and ambushed a meeting on 1 February 2014 organised by “Say Stop to Racism and Nationalism” initiative with the topic “Why should states apologize?” chanting denialist slogans such as “Armenian Genocide: an American Lie.”

We call on the the Swiss authorities to appeal against ECHR decision

The reason for us to take your time and give an account of the denialist history of Doğu Perinçek and the Talaat Pasha Committee, is to underline that denial of genocide cannot be considered as a simple disagreement of views. This land that is now Turkey, was a land where at the turn of the 19th century one of every 5 residents was a Christian, corresponding to the 20% of the overall population. Now the proportion is below 0.01%! Under these circumstances denialism, which is woven in the very texture of the society, provokes racism and hatred against Armenians, threatens those who challenge the official theses and constitutes one of the biggest obstacles to democratization which is a precondition of Turkey’s membership to EU. In this context we would also like to quote the European Parliament’s resolution of 1987 in which the acknowledgment of the Armenian genocide was named as a pre-condition for Turkey’s admission to the EU. (see  http://www.europarl.europa.eu/intcoop/euro/pcc/aag/pcc_meeting/resolutions/1987_07_20.pdf)

In view of the above we, as the Human Rights Association in Turkey, in the name of human rights, of the struggle against racist hatred and of justice in Turkey and elsewhere, we would like to express our belief that the Swiss Court’s decision to penalize Doğu Perinçek’s denialism was a step to protect us all, the entire humanity against racism and our heartfelt support to Swiss Court’s exercising its right to appeal against the ECHR decision dated 17 December 2013.

Sincerely yours,

Öztürk Türkdoğan

Chairman,

Human Rights Association

TURKEY

 

36 Comments on Turkey Rights Group Disappointed in ECHR Decision, Urges Appeal

  1. avatar Ayşe Günaysu // February 24, 2014 at 5:27 pm // Reply

    Thank you Armenian Weekly for covering our letter.

    • No, Ms. Günaysu: we Armenians ought to Thank You.
      A thousand times.

      God willing, someday women and men like you, ethnic Turks, will be in charge of the country of Turkey. Then we, Turks and Armenians, can live as good, peaceful neighbors.

  2. Dear Ayşe,
    History is our best teacher, denying AG is a crime against humanity!

  3. Thank you Ayse and HRA for persistently shining light on the darkness.

  4. Indeed Avery. Well said. When women and men of Gunaysu’s and Zarakolou’s calibre are in charge in Turkey – when the values of Human Rights Association of Turkey have become the dominant values of Turkish society “then we, Turks and Armenians, can live as good, peaceful neighbours”. That day will come!
    Meanwhile eternal shame and damnation on the illogical, inhuman, ahistorical and utterly biased decision of the ECHR until its repeal and reversal.

  5. avatar Random Armenian // February 24, 2014 at 11:58 pm // Reply

    Dear Öztürk Türkdoğan, Ayşe Günaysu and Human Rights Association,

    Thank you for informing us of Doğu Perinçek’s background. Not shocking, even though still hard to read about such people and their hate driven mindset and actions.

    This is valuable information to those who choose to use this court case to question the Armenian genocide. The and his friends denying Armenians’ contributions to the Ottoman empire questions their understanding of the genocide.

  6. €€€€€€…$$$$$$$$$ corruption is everywhere

  7. avatar Gaidzag Magdassian // February 25, 2014 at 5:09 am // Reply

    Dear Ayse,like so many Armenians I am very much moved after reading the above letter written by Human Rights Activists of Turkey.As long as there are courageous people like you ,we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

  8. The sad irony is that Perincek may have substantial Armenian heritage according to press accounts. Like the Jew ashamed of his heritage, DP climbs the Turkish ladder by leading the Genocidal hatred against his own people. No wonder he admires Talaat, who would have murdered his parents if given the chance.

    • Yeah you’d think the head (or former head, sentenced to life through Ergenekon) of this so-called social democrat/socialist Workers Party would be more progressive as this is supposed to be a liberal party. Nope. Not in Turkey.

    • Dogu Perincek was born in Gaziantep. Most likely he would be of Kurdish, or possibly Syrian ancestry (due to Gaziantep’s proximity to Iskenderun region).

    • Adnan,

      My California Armenian Church is full of Aintab Armenians. Learn your Armenian history. Read houshmadyan.org for wonderful material concerning pre Genocide daily life.

  9. Avery has written “No, Ms. Günaysu: we Armenians ought to Thank You. A thousand times.”

    This is totally inappropriate. Uncalled for. Offensive.

    Why, such a huge “thank you” ?
    Because a Genocide is being acknowledged ?! 100 years later…

    This type of reaction is just indecent. Pathetic.

    “A thousand times”, thank you ?
    Why not 1.5 million times, while you’re at it… Think, what it would mean…

    In fact, Mrs. Ayşe Günaysu was not asking for any such thank-you.

    On the contrary, she was rightfully thanking us for being magnanimous enough to accept the admission and contrition of Turks.

    Get at grip, Armenians…

    And by the way : you’re welcome, Ms. Günaysu.

    Haytoug Chamlian, Montreal

    • Adnan,

      My California Armenian Church is full of Aintab Armenians. Learn your Armenian history. Read houshmadyan.org for wonderful material concerning pre Genocide daily life.

    • Baron Shamlian,

      The most charitable thing I can say about your post is that ignorance propelled you, because no informed person could have written it.

      Ayse Gunaysu does more on a day for justice and Armenians than I will do in a lifetime. Every day for decades Tirkish nationalists working for the deep state threaten her life.

      If you do 1 per cent as much as she does for humanity, you’re a hero.

      I doubt you do.

  10. If we do not have hatred against Turkish people, it is thanks to you and all your friends, women and men.
    You save through your courage, honor and conscience of your country.

  11. Haytoug Shamlian has written:
    {“ This is totally inappropriate. Uncalled for. Offensive.”}

    You are easily offended, pal: your problem.
    “Uncalled for” ? Didn’t ask for your advice: I can write whatever I want and whatever AW moderators let me publish.
    Your irrational reaction is what is indecent and pathetic.
    So _you_ get a grip.

    Now let us deconstruct your emotional outburst:

    You are obviously unfamiliar with who Ms. Günaysu is.
    You can read her several articles @AW and get a firm grip of what she has done and does for our Cause.
    But in addition to her articles, and her on-the-ground work in Turkey, I was privileged to be present when Ms. Günaysu spoke at the Western ANCA Grassroots in November 2011 in California.
    The very personal sacrifices she has made to take the path she has taken – in Denialist Turkey – is not widely known, since she does not discuss it in her articles.

    It should be obvious even to you that Ms. Günaysu has gone over and above the “call of duty” of mere ‘admission and contrition’: she lives in Turkey while at the same time openly, actively, relentlessly confronting the fascist, nationalist, Denialist Turkish State. Placing herself at great risk of being jailed or worse.
    Refresh your grip on how one Mr. Ragıp Zarakolu, who also lives in Turkey, has been hounded, jailed, and terrorized by the Denialist State most of his life. Just yesterday a bunch of Turkish ultranationalist psychopaths were marching in Istanbul with a banner that said:

    ““Hooray for Ogün Samast! Down with Hrant Dink! “

    That is the country Ms. Günaysu and Mr. Ragıp Zarakolu live in.
    Every day.
    In case you still haven’t gotten a grip of what I tried to convey to you in this post: I was not thanking Ms. Günaysu for acknowledging the AG.
    I was thanking her for going far beyond the acknowledgement; far beyond what I would expect from an ordinary, private Turk and citizen of Turkey.
    You find that ‘indecent and pathetic’ ? Fine with me, pal: could not care less.

    So Ms. Günaysu: Thank You again a thousand times, and a thousand times more.

  12. avatar gaytzag palandjian // February 25, 2014 at 6:09 pm // Reply

    Dear Avery et al,
    I am surprised..really surprised that some people immediately thank and praise people such a s Ackcam,Gunaysu and a few more …Like..a few flowers in a huge field of poppies(opium plants-flowers)
    Indeed , it is good but what has been the response from good old great Turkey..other than having a few judges here and there well stuffed with bakshish and set them up against us.
    Today ,one RA TV channel showed how the old activist from abroad with a lady accompanying him were trying to collect 5000(at least) more votes or signatures rather in order to over-rule the decision by that SUBLIME Court….
    And the lady did mention that in communitties of Armenians now 7 million strong and 3 million in RA, we are here so as the haireni(Homeladn) people will also participate and sign some 5000 more….
    I tell you,unless our people wakes up from its ¨¨Tmbir¨ siesta-like sleep, we cannot forge ahead. No coordination no FUND,i.e. a Mother Fund .Fundlings aplenty, activist here and there from this that political party or independent ones..indeed many many independent ones like muchrroms popping up everydayu..no getting together to form RANK AND FILE<..
    forget it
    Bravo Ms Gunaysu and co. hope your voices multiply ,not thousand fold but millions fold in order that great Turkey will come down from the donkey she is riding(a Persian saying that)

    • You have not understood an iota of why I expressed, Avery.

      Nothing at all.

      So, continue with your “deconstructing”, etc., and good luck with all that cerebral mumbo-jumbo.

      You seem to be a “professional” of Hay Tad.

      I am not – thank God – .

      Yes, I am a bit emotional about the Genocide. Sorry about that. It’s very lame, I know…

      One hundred years later, an infinitesimal, an insignificant proportion of Turks are just starting to acknowledge what was inflicted upon our parents and grand-parents and what we have been enduring subsequently, and you deem appropriate to fall on your knees, in a state of awe, endless admiration and devotion, and to kiss their… ankles for that.

      I guess that is the incurable state of mind of genocide survivors…

      Haytoug

      P.S. I am sure that Mrs. Günays understood me better than you. She is not the problem, here, anyways.

    • Haytoug:

      We can go back and forth about who understood what till the proverbial cows come home.
      My posts and yours in this thread are there for all to see and read.
      It is clear who understood what and how much.

      Mr. Palandjian:

      I specifically thanked Ms. Günaysu, and mentioned Mr. Zarakolu in a long post: no mention of Dr. Akcam in my post.
      And I explained, as much as feasible, why I was thanking Ms. Günaysu.
      If you are still surprised after my explanation, than you are surprised: tomorrow is another day.

  13. I wonder if there are such groups in Armenia, who could stand up against its government, demand recognition of Khojaly Genocide, demand freeing of occupied Azerbaijani territories… I doubt… I really doubt. But just think about this.

  14. I wonder if there are such groups in Armenia, who could stand up against its government, demand recognition of Khojaly Genocide, demand freeing of occupied Azerbaijani territories… I doubt… I really doubt. But just think about this.

    • I wonder if there are such groups in Azerbaijan, who could stand up against its government, demand recognition of Sumgait Genocide, and Baku Genocide, and Genocide of all Armenians in Azerbaijan and in the Karabakh republic where civilians were targeted with missiles, pregnant Armenian women hunted down in hospitals and thrown out windows in Baku, Armenian civilians pursued by savages with swords and daggers in Sumgait, and some of them burned alive in the streets… and demand freeing more of occupied Armenian territories… I doubt… I really doubt. But just think about this.

    • well said [Hagop D].

  15. avatar gaytzag palandjian // February 26, 2014 at 10:37 am // Reply

    Khojaly was executed by azeri opposition atc the time(in short)All know that.Even I can quote(pretty soon) a Brit who attests to that.
    As to ¨¨occupied ¨ lands. YOUR PEOPLE ARE STILL IN MY MOTHERLAND,NAKHIJEVAN.Plus to that Shaumian must be liberated as well by Armenian freedom fighters.That will come …
    We wait to see what your regime does FIRST!!!

  16. Rashid, and I wonder if Turkic tribes know about the reality of Armenian Highlands, where Mongol turks wipe the entire indigenous Christian people of Asia Minor…those 613 killed in Khojali, created by KGB man, named Heidar Aliyev, in order to secure his son permanent dictatorial regime, who successfully overthrown his opponents and installed a corrupted Sultanate for his only beloved dummy son named Ilham.

    I wonder why world don’t label the reality of 30000 killed Kurdish civilians as Kurdish Genocide of Turkey!!

  17. To use the word “genocide” to describe Khojaly is a profound insult to the meaning of the word and the immense social, political, emotional ramifications it carries. Khojaly was tragic, but it was no different the usual sporadic fighting that went on during the Karabagh conflict. Why, for one, should Khojaly be remembered and not Maragagh, an identical event with the roles reversed? There is no reason to distinguish Khojaly from all of the terror and violence Armenians and Azerbaijanis faced in the months and years before and after that event. Khojaly is a tremendous tool in the spreading of anti-Armenian propaganda in Azerbaijan, and especially in Turkey.

    • {“..all of the terror and violence Armenians and Azerbaijanis faced in the months and years before and after that event.”}

      What terror and violence did Azerbaijanis face in the months before and years after the event ?
      At whose hands ?
      What ‘terror’ are you talking about ?
      Who terrorized whom ?

      Welcome to AW, btw.
      Most welcome. (…did it get too hot for you @Asbarez ?)

    • avatar Hagop D // March 1, 2014 at 4:09 pm //

      lol Avery, now that you mentioned it, it does seem to be a strange statement to include Azerbaijanis in that statement. I did not read much into it, as I thought he/she might have meant Azeris facing “terror and violence” by their own government. I don’t know how ‘Armenian’ generally writes, but I hope he/she was not suggesting Armenians were responsible.

    • avatar Yerevanian // March 8, 2014 at 3:09 am //

      Armenian,
      Contrary to the evidence given by Human Rights Watch, and Memorial Human Rights Center, which suggest the possibility of 161-200 Azeri civilians being massacred by Armenian soldiers in Khojaly in February of 1992, these parties never actually witnessed such an incident. So, as a result, these parties are in no position to claim that Armenian soldiers committed a massacre against Azeri civilians in Khojaly. As a matter of fact, you should check out the “Khojaly” section, over on: http://www.nkrusa.org/nk_conflict
      It contains a large amount of evidence which convincingly shows that the Azeri soldiers murdered their own civilians, and then attempted to frame the Armenian soldiers for this particular massacre.

  18. Armenian,
    That’s true, and the problem is, Khojaly being a “genocide” will not fly in a million years because it has no basis in reality, which basically shows the extent of desperation the Turk/Azeri turanists have to “have their own genocide” to use against Armenia in a pitiful display of an attempt to reverse roles.

    Turkey itself loves it despite looking foolish and ridiculous, because somehow it does distract from the real Genocide they perpetrated against Armenians. Denying the Armenian Genocide is one shame, and the arrogant claim of “Khojali genocide” only increases that shame.

    Haytoug,
    Many of us are admittedly frustrated with Turks and their predominant ignorant state of Genocide denial, but as the Chinese say, the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. And as the infinitesimal minority of Turks take this step, we don’t need to bow down to them, but at least we can show our appreciation for them being courageous enough to side with the truth. It does not mean we will ever stop our demand for justice.

  19. avatar gaytzag palandjian // March 1, 2014 at 4:18 pm // Reply

    Avery,
    In my above post w/rgd to the liberal Turks and sympathizers with us,if you read it carefully will see there is ¨encouragement ¨ on my behalf, rather thanks repeated thanks and thanks by some here.
    I do not believe though their VOICES will be allowed to be multiplied by the millions…that needs to be seen.When indeed their regime has made a U Turn and democracy adopted…
    Keep hoping for that with a dozen tulips is hardly possible.
    MEANWHILE, what is happening on the int´l political scene (Ref.Ukrian)is rather a s i t u a t i o n!!!
    I hope to God almighty Armenia will not follow FURTHER in that path.RA needs to be like Iran,Switzerland Finland etc., just to name a few. No siding with any of those.It is possible.If Rusia cutts off gas to RA, Iran will be a supplier.If Aid is not forthcoming from West then China could give us a hand.
    We must learn to be like those countries I just mentioned….
    This part for higher Int´l politics.
    Take care…

  20. Armenians must be so desperate that they will allow themselves to be patronized by a vulturous ex-leftist-rebel-left-without-cause. As the saying in that movie goes: “Show me the money!!” Empty words such as Ms. Günaysu’s are just said … empty. It is actually worse … was it not enough that her people had killed yours in millions, you will now allow your tragedy to be used as a means she and her likes uses to aggrevate their own state? You see, the Soviets created her likes in Turkey. And then they left. So what are these poor lefts are going to do? Who are they going to fight against? Hmm, nobody … pursed lips. So, what is the next best worst thing? Needle the State with Armenian genocide “acceptance”. Ms. Günaysu, if you feel so strongly about human rights, why don’t you write and complain about the plight of 600,000 Azeris made homeless by Armenian aggression? I know why. That is not contrarian enough. You say you want to change Turkey. Who is visiting and publishing on Armenian (not Turkish) Weekly is going to do that? Unless it is the pats on the back that you seek.

  21. Regarding:
    Haytoug Shamlian // February 25, 2014 at 1:02 pm
    ‘This is totally inappropriate. Uncalled for. Offensive. Avery has written “No, Ms. Günaysu: we Armenians ought to Thank You. A thousand times.” ‘

    To Haytoug Shamlian: Avery has very appropriately recognized not only Ayse Gunaysu’s physical heroism given the real threats to her well being from her own government for her clear, articulate, deeply morally rooted analysis of the Armeno-Turkish conundrum, but he has also honored her for her spiritual courage and boldness in rising above–far above–the pull of primitive tribal loyalty. She sets a very high example. No one can equal her eloquent, nuanced analysis of what is wrong between Turks and Armenians. If you want to cut the likes of her from your reading list, welcome to your intellectual desert! May she always have a safe place at AW. We should all be very grateful for her deep and conscientious contributions.

  22. @ Avery and Hakob,

    I was not suggesting Armenians are responsible, but I was referring to ethnic tensions and overall warfare between the peoples at the time. It is important to remember that the not all of the Azeris in Baku rejoiced in the violence going on against Armenians. Many of them protected them, and they too found it unpleasant. As far as terror goes, I was referring to war in general, not Khojaly. Emotional suffering exists for both sides.

    And no, Avery, Asbarez did not become “too hot to handle”– as someone who cares deeply for Armenia and its future, there is no way I am going to take a back seat for things that I care about, no matter how “hot” it gets.

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