Government's Rejection Fails, Bill Accepted

The lower house of the French parliament passed the bill penalizing denial of the so-called Armenian genocide 106- 19. The bill could damage French business interests in Turkey.

Government's Rejection Fails, Bill Accepted

The bill still needs to be accepted by the Senate and French President Jacques Chirac in order to be implemented. Speaking on behalf of the French government, European Affairs Minister Delegate Catherine Colonna rejected the bill during the parliament's session earlier today.  The bill carries up to one year of imprisonment and a 45,000 Euro penalty for denying so-called Armenian genocide.

Turkey said before the vote that if the legislation was passed, it could threaten French economic investments in the country.


Turkey denies that about 1.5 million Armenians were killed as part of genocide during the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire during the first world war, arguing that Armenian deaths were a part of general partisan fighting in which both sides suffered.

However, France's Armenian community, which is up to 500,000-strong and one of the largest in Europe, had pushed hard for the bill and found cross-party support within parliament.

Protesters demonstrated outside
the French embassy in Ankara

"Imagine for a second that Germany today denied the Holocaust. It is totally unacceptable," said French politician Patrick Devedjian, who is of Armenian origin, told RTL radio.

Turkey opposed the bill, and the prime minister, Recep Tayyip, described the proposed law as a "blunder".

The Turkish foreign minister Abdullah Gul, said on Wednesday: "If the bill is adopted, Turkey will not lose anything, but  France will lose not only Turkey, but something of itself as well." 
The legislation establishes a one-year prison term and 45,000 euro ($56,570) fine for anyone denying that a genocide occurred - the same sanctions as those imposed for denying the Nazi genocide of Jews during the second world war.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16