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    » 02/29/2012, 00.00

    FRANCE - TURKEY

    French Constitutional Council rejects law on Armenian Genocide



    The court rules law that punishes the denial of the Armenian Genocide of 1915 "unconstitutional" because it undermines "freedom of expression and communication." Approval of Ankara. But to deny the Holocaust in France is punishable by law.

    Paris (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The French Constitutional Council has declared the law passed by both Houses of Parliament, which punishes the denial of the Armenian genocide unconstitutional. The bill had already been signed by the President of the Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy. Sarkozy's office immediately issued a statement calling for a new version of the law "taking into account the decision of the Constitutional Council " " The president believes that genocide denial is intolerable and must be punished in this regard," the statement said. (AsiaNews 24/01/2012 Turkey threatens retaliation against France over Armenian genocide law).

    It is unclear if and how the decision of the Constitutional Council can influence another law that punishes Holocaust denial in France. Holocaust denial is illegal and is punishable by one year in prison and a fine of 45 thousand Euros. The same penalties are provided for the denial of the Armenian genocide. This law was revised by the highest judicial body at the request of a group of 77 deputies and 65 senators. "The Council considers the law unconstitutional," a brief statement of the Council declared because it threatens "freedom of expression and communication."

    Shortly after the announcement of the Council, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said: "The verdict is positive. It 'a very positive decision. I thank all members of the Council. I hope that everyone learned a lesson from this." The minister said that Turkey will reconsider whether to recommence business, political and military contacts with France, "frozen" after the passage of the law on genocide.

    The author of the Genocide bill Valerie Boyer expressed her disappointment on the decision of the Constitutional Council. According to her, the decision of the Constitutional Council creates a disparity in treatment. "France has acknowledged two genocides - the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide of 1915. The victims of the Holocaust are protected from denial, but the victims of the Armenian Genocide are not," she announced.

    The leader of the Armenian community in France has strongly criticized the ruling, the result, according to him, of the Turkish lobby. "We have been totally outraged by the Constitutional Council's decision at its very core, which is based on politics rather than on legal grounds," said Franck Mourad Papazian. On the same line as the sensor. Herve Marseille: "If we deny the Jewish genocide, we can be punished, but if we deny the Armenian one we will not be punished. So we have a legal punishment for some, and not for others. Everyone should be equal before the law."

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    See also

    13/10/2006 TURKEY
    Turkey protest: France's Armenian genocide denial bill leads to calls for boycott
    Turkish government calls action 'severe blow" against relations built over the centuries; Turkish press calls French MPs "stupid".

    24/01/2012 TURKEY-FRANCE
    Turkey threatens retaliation against France over Armenian genocide law
    The French Senate yesterday approved the criminalization of public denial of the Armenian genocide of 1915, on the same basis of the law relating to the Holocaust. Ankara considers the vote "irresponsible", and speaks of "total failure" of relations between the two countries.

    24/12/2011 TURKEY – EUROPEAN UNION
    Tensions between Ankara and Paris over the Armenian question
    The French National Assembly has adopted a draft bill that would impose jail time and fines on anyone who denies the Armenian genocide. Erdogan’s government withdraws its ambassador in Paris and accuses France of genocide. Military cooperation is suspended and an economic boycott is a possibility. Istanbul’s Armenians and the Armenian Patriarchate are cool at the French move. Turkey’s entry into the European Union gets a bit harder.

    25/05/2009 TURKEY
    Erdogan attacks the past, labels Kemalist ethnic cleansing Fascist
    In a clear reference to the Greek and Armenian minorities, the premier attacks blind nationalism that does not want to question the past. Appreciation for Erdogan’s words from the Greeks, Armenians and western diplomats. Now everyone wants facts to follow words.

    23/04/2016 17:18:00 TURKEY
    Turkish Parliament: whistles and jeers against Armenian MP who remembers genocide

    Speaking about the anniversary of the genocide, Garo Paylan calls for an investigation into the killing of Armenian MPs in 1915 whose photos he displayed. In Turkey, talking about the “Armenian genocide" can mean three years in prison.





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