Turkey has condemned the parliament of Luxembourg for recognizing the 1915 Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire and recalled its ambassador to the European Union country in protest.
“We condemn and strongly reject the unfair resolution the Luxembourg Parliament has adopted by distorting the historical facts and the law,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement released on Thursday evening.
“The resolution demonstrates that the Luxembourg Parliament is far from understanding the UN Convention of 1948 [on the crime of genocide] to which it refers and commits the same error with some of its role model parliaments,” it said. “If Parliaments put themselves in the place of international courts and try to render judgments on such a serious crime such as genocide, they would abuse history and law.”
The ministry announced that the Turkish ambassador to Luxembourg, Levent Sahinkaya, has been recalled to Ankara for consultations. It said it also conveyed its protest to the Grand Duchy’s ambassador to Turkey.
In a resolution unanimously adopted on Wednesday, Luxembourg’s Chamber of Deputies said it believes the slaughter of some 1.5 million Armenians in the Ottoman Empire constituted genocide which should also be recognized by Turkey. The parliament said it is therefore “joining in the commemoration of the centenary of the Armenian genocide in the spirit of European solidarity and justice.”
Armenia was quick to welcome the resolution, with Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian praising the tiny European state for contributing to “the noble task of averting new crimes against humanity.” “The irreversible process of recognition by the international community of the Armenian genocide is continuing,” Nalbandian said in a statement.
The Turkish government reacted just as angrily to a spate of similar declarations and statements made by several other states, including the Vatican, Germany and Austria, ahead of the genocide centennial marked in Armenia on April 24. Turkey’s ambassadors to the Vatican and Austria were withdrawn as a result.
Ankara also condemned the presidents of Russia and France for attending April 24 ceremonies in Yerevan and reaffirming their countries’ recognition of the Armenian genocide.