Will Sarkozy ratify the Armenian genocide bill?
Or French deep business and military relations with Turkey will win the game which is continuing more than 100 years ?
Brussels, by Fiona Lorin / Roni Alasor - Ararat News Publishing - The French senate passed a bill criminalizing the public denial of Genocides. 127 Members of the Senate from different political parties supported the bill, which includes crimes of genocide, crimes against the humanity and war crimes recognised by the French law. The extermination of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in 1895 - 1915 was recognised as Genocide by France in 2001. The new bill provides a year in jail and a fine of 45,000 Euros for public rejection of the Armenian Genocide in France.
France has already criminalized the denial of the Jewish Holocaust by the law "Gayssot" in 1990. The supporters of the Armenian Genocide bill in the French Senate, both from the left and from the right political parties, claimed that the French legal basis should not make difference between the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide and the public denial of these crimes should be punished equally.
The Armenian community all over the world, as well as the Armenian government, welcomed the French senate decision.
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But it provoked the anger of Turkey, which still refuses to call the planned extermination of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire as Genocide. Ankara threats Paris to recall the Turkish ambassador and to impose political and economical sanctions. However, for the moment no concrete measures are announced. Turkish sources say that they will lobby hardly to convince 60 Senators to contest the bill in the Constitutional Council, which is the only hope for Turkey to avoid this legislation.
Otherwise, the bill will be sent to French President Nicolas Sarkozy to be signed into law, which he is expected to do before the end of February. The question is, will Sarko ratify it ? Or French deep business and military relations will win the game which is continuing more than 100 years ?