And like the good dhimmis they are, the Canadian government is distancing itself from the legislators who recognized the genocide. From the Globe and Mail, with thanks to Mentat:
Ankara — Turkey on Thursday condemned a decision by Canadian legislators to recognize as genocide the mass killing of Armenians during the First World War, accusing Canadian politicians of being “narrow minded.”
Canada’s Parliament on Wednesday backed a resolution condemning the actions of Ottoman Turkish forces eight decades ago.
Government members were discouraged from voting for the motion, which was adopted 153-68 in the House of Commons. Prime Minister Paul Martin was absent during the vote.
The motion read: “… this House acknowledges the Armenian genocide of 1915 and condemns this act as a crime against humanity.”
In a written statement, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said Turkey strongly condemned the Canadian Parliament’s decision and accused Canadian legislators of blindly “following those with marginal views.”
“Some narrow minded Canadian politicians were not able to understand that such decisions based on … prejudiced information, will awaken feelings of hatred among people of different [ethnic] roots and disturb social harmony,” the statement said.
It said it was not up to parliaments to “reach conclusions over controversial periods in history” and insisted that the vote would not benefit Armenians in Canada or Armenia.
Canada is the 16th country to label the killings as genocide, a step already taken by Switzerland, France, Argentina and Russia, as well as 11 U.S. state governments.
Armenians say a 1915-1923 campaign to force them out of eastern Turkey amounted to a genocide and some 1.5 million people were killed. The Turkish government rejects the charge of genocide as unfounded and says that while 600,000 Armenians died, 2.5 million Muslims perished in a period of civil unrest.
In 2001, Turkey cancelled millions of dollars worth of defence deals with French companies after legislators in France recognized the genocide.
The statement did not say if Turkey planned similar sanctions but said Canadian politicians would “bear the responsibility for any negative developments the decision will bring.”
The Canadian vote split the ruling Liberal party between backbenchers and cabinet ministers. Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Bill Graham said the Turkish government had warned that recognizing the genocide could have economic consequences and that he wanted to maintain good relations with Turkey.
On Thursday, the Canadian Embassy released a statement in an attempt to distance the government from Wednesday’s vote.
“Private member’s motions are not binding on the government of Canada,” the statement read.