British MP Feryal Clark has called on the UK Government to recognize the Armenian Genocide.
“What happened to Armenian people 100 years ago was a genocide, and it is about time that our Government recognized that,” she said during the debate on Holocaust Memorial Day,
“I was born in south-east Turkey and grew up hearing stories about the horrors faced by the Armenian people in that region. Almost 100 years ago, a whole culture and a whole people were systematically destroyed and had their identity erased in an act of appalling violence. Families were torn apart, with children never seeing their parents again. Some 1.5 million Armenian men, women and children were killed. Vibrant, centuries-old communities were simply wiped off the face of the map,” Feryal Clark said.
“Now, over a century later, the fight of Armenian communities around the world for justice and recognition goes on. The Armenian community in the UK has been consistently at the forefront of that fight. I praise the work of the Armenian National Committee, which is a fantastic advocate for the UK Armenian diaspora. There are many colleagues across the House who have been passionate friends of the Armenian community in the UK. In particular, I pay tribute to the hon. Member for East Worthing and Shoreham (Tim Loughton), who sits alongside me as a co-chair of the all-party parliamentary group for Armenia, and my right hon. Friend the Member for Warley (John Spellar) for their tireless campaigning on this issue,” the lawmaker added.
“Despite their campaigning and that of so many others in the UK, the Government are several steps behind the position of many of our European neighbors. France, Germany, Austria, Poland and Denmark are just some of the countries that have taken the step of acknowledging that the horrendous acts that occurred constitute a genocide. The devolved Administrations in Cardiff and Edinburgh have also taken that important step, yet still our Government refuse to do so. In April last year, we saw the incredibly important moment when President Biden recognized the Armenian genocide, the first time the American Government had officially done so. Why then, are we in the UK so far behind others when it comes to recognition?” she continued.
“It is time that the Government acted to provide Armenian communities in the UK with the recognition they have been fighting for. What happened to Armenian people 100 years ago was a genocide,, and it is about time that our Government recognized that,” Feryal Clark concluded.