06/09/2012

Turkey accuses Syria: the Armenian Genocide

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The Armenian Genocide (ArmenianՀայոց Ցեղասպանություն[hɑˈjɔtsʰ tsʰɛʁɑspɑnuˈtʰjun]), also known as the Armenian Holocaust, the Armenian Massacres, and, traditionally amongst Armenians, as Meds Yeghern (Մեծ Եղեռն, Armenian pronunciation: [mɛts jɛˈʁɛrn], usually translated as the Great Calamity or Great Crime was the systematic extermination of the Armenian population from its historic homeland in Asia Minor by the Ottoman government. It took place during and after World War I and was implemented in two phases: the wholesale killing of the able-bodied male population through massacre and forced labor, and the deportation on death marches to the Syrian Desert of women, children, the elderly and infirm. The total number of lives destroyed as a result has been estimated at between 1 and 1.5 million. The Assyrians, the Pontic Greeks and other minority groups were similarly targeted for extermination by the Ottoman government, and their treatment is considered by many historians to be part of the same genocidal policy.

It is acknowledged to have been one of the first moderngenocides,as scholars point to the organized manner in which the killings were carried out to eliminate the Armenians, and it is the second most-studied case of genocide after the Holocaust. The word genocide was coined in order to describe these events.

The starting date of the genocide is conventionally held to be April 24, 1915, the day when Ottoman authorities arrested some 250 Armenian intellectuals and community leaders inConstantinople. Thereafter, the Ottoman military uprooted Armenians from their homes and forced them to march for hundreds of miles, depriving them of food and water, to the desert of what is now Syria. Massacres were indiscriminate of age or gender, with rape and other sexual abusecommonplace. The majority of Armenian diaspora communities were founded as a result of the Armenian genocide.

The Republic of Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, denies the word genocide is an accurate description of the events. In recent years, it has faced repeated calls to accept the events as genocide. To date, twenty countries have officially recognized the events of the period as genocide, and most genocide scholars and historians accept this view.


Source: Wikipedia

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