Turkish PM Counters Armenian Genocide with Threats of Expulsion

Turkish Prime minister Erdogan’s proposed course of action regarding the Armenian genocide is painfully ironic. The logic goes something like this: “Our nation did not systematically round up and murder over one million Armenians during World War I. And to prove it, I will now systematically round up and expel hundreds of thousands of Armenians living on Turkish soil.” Try arguing with that.

In response to recent resolutions passed in the US Congress and Swedish Parliament characterizing the war-time massacres of Armenians as genocide, the Turkish government has recalled its ambassadors from both countries. Then, the Prime Minister suggested in an interview with the BBC that such international recognition of the genocide would prompt an expulsion of Armenian immigrants living in Turkey.

“There are currently 170,000 Armenians living in our country. Only 70,000 of them are Turkish citizens, but we are tolerating the remaining 100,000. If necessary, I may have to tell these 100,000 to go back to their country because they are not my citizens. I don’t have to keep them in my country.”

The undocumented workers to which the PM refers are mostly women from Armenia’s impoverished countryside who have migrated to Istanbul where they work in the service sector. While a number of politicians have described Erdogan’s comments as empty threats, they are a troubling reminder that Armenians are still unwelcome in Turkey.

To date, over twenty countries have officially recognized the Armenian genocide, as well as international organizations including the European Parliament and MERCOSUR.

Posted By Mary Tharin

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7 Comments

Filed under Foreign Policy, Human Rights

7 responses to “Turkish PM Counters Armenian Genocide with Threats of Expulsion

  1. Kelly

    170 thousand?

    Is he also going to remove the 700 thousand Hemshins who are Armenian but were forcefully converted to Islam and Turkified?

    Or the millions of Crypto-Armenians in Turkey today who were Turkified after the Genocide.

    Or the descendent’s of the ottoman Janissaries comprised of little Armenian boys who were taken away from their families and forcefully converted to muslim turks in the devşirme system.
    Quote

  2. Salvador Rivera, Ph.D

    The U.S. and Europe are responsible for promoting this brutish Turkish attitude of prepotency. They keep insisiting Turkey is strategically vital when in fact, it is not. If it is we should get a brand new Navy and Air Force.

    S. Rivera

  3. Avshar

    Historical Truth is the Armenians fought a war against the Turks from 1878 to 1924 and lost. Any war sounds like a genocide if the dead of only one side is counted. Indeed, the UN definition of genocide excludes warring parties. If the Armenians had a case, they would try to pass a court verdict. Instead they are tapping vote hungry (if not fund raiser hungry politicians) to gain a back door recognition.

    On top of it, they want Turkey to feed 100,000 Armenians feeding off their country illegally? You can’t have your cake and eat it too!..

  4. Avshar

    Armenians rebelled against the Ottoman Empire at their weakest time, during World War I. While the Turks were defending their capital Istanbul in Gallipoli against the British and French armada from April 1915 to March 1917, the Armenians started wiping out Turkish villages like Van and Erzurum to help the invading Russian armies in Eastern Anatolia. Armen Garo wrote in his book “Why Armenia Should be Free”, Boston, Baikar Press, 1918 that 200,000 Armenians fought on the side of the Russian Army in the Caucasus. This is more than the number of US soldiers sent to Iraq. Considering the total population of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire was 1.3 million it does not leave many innocent families.

    Just like the US deported citizens of Japanese ethnicity during World War II, the Turks deported the Armenians away from the war zone. Mind you the Armenians had surely collaborated with the enemy, but the Japanese were only suspected of future collaboration.
    Coincidentally, the Turks started to win the war, once the Armenians were deported from the war zone where they provided shelter for the 200,000 armed rebels. 95 years later, their descendants will illegally call their treason genocide and use vote hungry (if not donation hungry) politicians to pass such verdicts and expect Turks to continue feeding 100,000 illegal Armenians in their own country?

  5. zubeyde

    I
    Just as almost every year, Armenian propaganda and the initiatives of the Armenian lobby have gained momentum to pressure upon the US President over the speech he will deliver on April 24.
    Every year prior to April 24, the Armenian lobby increases pressure upon the US President over the speech he will deliver. But the difference now compared to the previous years is that the aim of the considered resolution by the Foreign Affairs Commission is to corner Turkey into ratifying the protocols. The same is valid for the Sweden parliement’s decision.
    However, they are the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Armenia’s decisions which have brought the process to point of zero. Because:
    The court stated that the protocols can not be interpreted or applied in a way that would contradict paragraph 11 of Armenian Declaration of Independence.

  6. zubeyde

    III
    In response, it has been expressed that its task will include the discussion of issues like returning back of Armenian properties left behind after the Armenian relocation, giving compensation to descendants of the relocated Armenians, and preserving Armenian monuments, such as churches, in Turkey. Turkey is not willing to re-examine these issues which have already been resolved with the Treaty of Lausanne.
    2) By putting forth that some of the Turkish lands are in fact Armenian, Armenia indirectly claims a right over these territories. In other words, again indirectly, it does not recognize the border between the two countries.
    I want to remind you that The main trigger to force USA to join WWI was the letter sent by German Foreign Minister Zimmerman to Mexico expressing support to Mexico to get back the Mexican states Arizona, Texas which had just been annexed by the USA

  7. zubeyde

    IV

    Germany’s claim on Zudetland and Gdansk just because they were its historical lands caused burst of World War II! The Worls history is a history of wars which broke up because of territorial claims of states.

    While territorial claims are so important to be reasons of war, it is not possible to understand the indifference of the USA to the Armenian claims as an ally and of Sweden as a developed European country. Armenia, the US and Sweden have a false conviction that under such a pressure, Turkey will be forced to ratify the protocols.

    Adoption of the resolutions in the House of Representatives and the Sweden Parliament clearly will damage the US-Turkey and Sweden-Turkey relations. Whether it is brought to the House Floor does not change the negative feelings of the Turks against the American politicians including the president.

    This will also push Turkey-Armenia relations which have already reached a deadlock to enter into an irreversible path and will harm the normalization process. Rejection of the protocols by Turkey can even be possible.
    This situation could harm Turkey, but will also harm the US, Sweden and hinder the Turkey-Armenia relations.

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