Subject: introduction of an official EU Remembrance Day of the Armenian Genocide.
Honourable President of the European Council,
Dear Mr. Michel,
Honourable President of the European Commission,
Dear Ms. von der Leyen,
Honourable High Representative,
Dear Mr. Borrell,
Honourable President of the European Parliament,
Dear Mr. Sassoli,
Dear Ms. Wiktorin,
On 24 April, the Armenian people, and the European citizens of Armenian origin commemorate the 106th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire between 1915 – 1923 when 1,5 million innocent Armenians were deported from their homeland and were either assassinated or left to perish in the Syrian desert. This lead not only to a massive uprooting of the native Armenian population, the loss of innocent human lives but also to the loss of historic homeland and immense cultural heritage.
This year, the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide is all the more important, given the consequences of the destructive war launched by Azerbaijan, directly supported by Turkey – the successor of the Ottoman Empire. As testified by international human rights organizations, global media outlets as well the French President Emmanuel Macron, Turkey paid and deployed terrorist fighters from the Middle East to fight against the native Armenian population in Nagorno Karabakh/Artsakh during the war in the autumn of 2020.
During the military parade in Baku in December 2020 which in fact celebrated the war crimes committed by the Turkey-Azerbaijan-terrorists coalition against the Armenians, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, standing next to the Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, glorified and paid tribute to Enver Pasha – one of the main perpetrators of the Armenian Genocide. Today the realization of aggressive neo-ottoman aspirations and Pan-Turkism determine Turkey’s foreign policy, in particular in its neighboring regions.
Impunity and denial create soil for new crimes against humanity. The fact that the Turkish authorities still carry out such an aggressive policy, causing an existential threat against the Armenians is primarily accounted for by the fact that as the successor of the Ottoman Empire Turkey never bore responsibility or was held accountable for a committed genocide.
As EU citizens, we are aware of the importance of honestly dealing with the past, recognizing the mistakes, and repairing them in order to be able to move forward. We are grateful to the European Parliament as well as to all those EU Member states that have called for justice and recognized the Armenian Genocide.
We firmly believe in the importance of defining events with their true names and in the immense significance of remembrance. In the light of the upcoming 106th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide on 24 April, as a European grassroots civil society organization, with chapters in 13 EU member states, we herewith propose that an official remembrance day of the Armenian Genocide be introduced in the European Union, in order to pay tribute to the innocent victims and in order to prevent the dark past from repeating.
EAFJD – European Armenian Federation for Justice for Democracy – Brussels
Austrian Armenian Committee for Justice and Democracy – Austria
CDCA Belgique – Comité de Défense de la Cause Arménienne – Belgium
Armenian National Committee of Bulgaria – Bulgaria
Αρμενική Εθνική Επιτροπή Κύπρου – Cyprus
CDCA France – Comité de Défense de la Cause Arménienne – France
Deutsch-Armenisches Komitee für Gerechtigkeit und Demokratie – Germany
Αρμενική Εθνική Επιτροπή Ελλάδος – Greece
Ormiański Komitet Narodowy Polski – Poland
Comitetul National Armean din Romania – Romania
Consejo Nacional Armenio de España – Spain
Svensk-Armenisk Kommitté för Rättvisa och Demokrati – Sweden
Nederlands Armeens Comité voor Rechtvaardigheid en Democratie – The Netherlands
Armenian National Committee of the United Kingdom – United Kingdom