Friday

20th Apr 2018

Armenia killings were genocide, German MPs say

  • Merkel was absent at the German Bundestag when MPs voted on the Armenia resolution (Photo: Deutscher Bundestag/Lichtblick/Achim Melde)

[UPDATED 2 June at 17.20] German lawmakers on Thursday (2 June) passed a resolution declaring the massacre of Armenians by Ottoman Turkish forces in 1915 and 1916 as a genocide.

Ankara has since recalled its ambassador from Berlin amid broader concerns over a strained migrant swap deal with the EU signed in March.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel, for her part, struck a conciliatory tone in the wake of the resolution.

At a news conference with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Merkel said relations with Ankara, a member of the alliance, remain strong.

“There is a lot that binds Germany to Turkey and even if we have a difference of opinion on an individual matter, the breadth of our links, our friendship, our strategic ties, is great,” she said.

The five-page resolution called for a “commemoration of the genocide of Armenian and other Christian minorities in the years 1915 and 1916”.

Some 1.5 million Armenians are said to have died during the atrocities. Germany now joins France and Russia in recognising the killings as a genocide.

Written by the Christian Democrats, Social Democrats and Green party, the move had already sparked stern criticism from Turkey's government.

Merkel was not present at the assembly when the resolution was voted.

But Turkey's prime minister Binali Yıldırım, prior to the vote, said the ballot was a "test of friendship" between Ankara and Berlin.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's increasingly authoritarian president, also told Merkel ties with Germany would suffer if the resolution was passed.

Relations between the two were already strained after Erdogan requested the prosecution of comedian Jan Boehmermann for reciting a poem insulting Erdogan.

Turkey widens crackdown on EU free speech

Turkey arrests a Dutch journalist and complains over plans to commemorate an Ottoman genocide in Germany and Sweden after urging legal action against European comedians.

Erdogan warns Germany on Armenia genocide vote

The Turkish president says that a vote by the German parliament on a resolution abut the killings of Armenians in 1915 would "damage" relations between the two countries.

EU toes the line on Syria air strikes

EU foreign ministers to back Western air strikes on Syria, the same way they backed the UK over Russia's chemical attack on an ex-spy in Britain.

Analysis

Is Germany more hawkish on Russia?

Germany's socialist foreign minister just said the EU should "step up pressure" on Russia. Merkel aired "political" doubts on a Russian pipeline.

News in Brief

  1. MEPs urge better protection for journalists
  2. Dieselgate: MEPs back greater role for EU in car approvals
  3. European parliament adopts new organic farming rules
  4. EU granted protection to half million people in 2017
  5. Report: Facebook to carve 1.5bn users out of EU privacy law
  6. Greek court ruling permits migrants to travel to mainland
  7. Commonwealth summit hopes for trade boost after Brexit
  8. Merkel and Macron meet to finetune eurozone reform plans

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. ILGA EuropeParabéNs! Portugal Votes to Respect the Rights of Trans and Intersex People
  2. Mission of China to the EUJobs, Energy, Steel: Government Work Report Sets China's Targets
  3. Martens CentreJoin Us at NET@WORK2018 Featuring Debates on Migration, Foreign Policy, Populism & Disinformation
  4. European Jewish CongressKantor Center Annual Report on Antisemitism Worldwide - The Year the Mask Came Off
  5. UNICEFCalls for the Protection of Children in the Gaza Strip
  6. Mission of China to the EUForeign Minister Wang Yi Highlights Importance of China-EU Relations
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersImmigration and Integration in the Nordic Region - Getting the Facts Straight
  8. Macedonian Human Rights MovementMacedonians in Bulgaria Demand to End the Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations
  9. Counter BalanceThe EIB Needs to Lead by Example on Tax Justice
  10. ILGA EuropeTrans People in Sweden to be Paid Compensation for Forced Sterilisation
  11. International Partnership for Human RightsThe Danger of Standing Up for Justice and Rights in Central Asia
  12. Mission of China to the EUChina and EU Must Work Together to Promote Global Steel Sector

Latest News

  1. Obscurity surrounds EU military fund's expert groups
  2. New EU party finance rules short circuit accountability
  3. Draghi to stay in secretive 'lobby' group
  4. Bulgaria offers lesson in tackling radical-right populists
  5. Getting secret EU trilogue documents: a case study
  6. Selmayr case scars Parliament and Commission
  7. Beyond macho: Turkish-EU ties
  8. 'Flobert' guns - Europe's latest terror loophole