Turkish parliament bans use of term ‘Armenian genocide’ – Asbarez.com

A general view of the Turkish Parliament

ANKARA — As part of a package aimed at changing the Turkish parliament’s internal rules of procedure, the legislature’s constitutional committee on Thursday approved a provision banning the use of the word “Armenian genocide” in the legislature. The terms “Kurdistan” and “Kurdish regions” are also prohibited.

The bill, initiated by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), provides for punishment for lawmakers who break the rule by “insulting history and the common past of the Turkish people “who use the term” Armenian genocide “when referring to the” events of 1915 “.

Members of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) left parliament in protest.

Garo Paylan, member of the Turkish parliament representing the HDP, called the bill “a proposal for an authoritarian nationalist coalition of the AK and NMP parties”. Republican People’s Party Armenian lawmaker Selina Dogan also opposed the bill, saying that no one should insult the history of the Turkish people, but neither should the history of other peoples. to be insulted.

Dogan described the measure as an attempt to silence the opposition, sources in his press service told Tert.am.

Dogan accused the Turkish authorities of spreading hatred against ethnic and religious minorities. “If those who talk about genocide are to be fined for insulting Turkey’s historic past, then what should be the punishment for those who insult Armenians from the same rostrum?” she asked the Majilis.

“While the Armenians pray for the prosperity of these regions, the Turks continue to characterize the Armenians as quick enemies,” Dogan added.

“No one can and should insult the common past of the peoples who have already resided or resided in the territory of Turkey. And the other nations? Is it permissible to insult the historical past of the Armenians? Can a parliamentarian use insulting words against Jews? Do they enjoy freedom from the Greeks or the Assyrians? Dogan said.

Before adopting such a rule, however, the Turkish parliament in January suspended Garo Paylan, an Armenian member of the Turkish parliament representing the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) after speaking about the Armenian genocide during the legislative debate on Turkey’s now constitution. approved.

In his speech, which angered AKP members, Paylan said that from 1913 to 1923, Armenians, Assyrians, Greeks and Jews registered in the country were “exiled from these lands or subjected to torture following great massacres and genocide ”.

“At one point, we were 40% of the population,” Paylan said at the time despite outcry from AKP members. “Today we are one in 1000. Something has happened to us, and I call it genocide as you call it. The Armenian people know very well what happened to them. I know very well what happened to my father, grandfather. Let’s face it [history] together, ”he added.


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