Portugal Parliament Resolution

April 24, 2019

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Portugal Parliamentary Resolution

Vote of Weigh No. 819 / XIII

In evocation of the victims of the Armenian genocide of 1915

The massacres perpetrated against the Armenian population began on April 24, as it was on that date in 1915 that the Ottoman authorities arrested and executed 250 Armenian intellectuals and community leaders in Constantinople under the orders of the government of the “Young Turks”.

In the years during and after World War I it is estimated that 800,000 to 1.5 million people were killed as a result of the genocide. The systematic extermination by the Ottoman authorities directed towards Armenian minority in its territory is considered by the international community of historians the first genocide of 20th century. Massacres, forced labor, forced deportations and the death marches that led to the Syrian Desert, including women, children, elderly and the disabled, the victims of periodic robberies, rapes and massacres, marked a dark chapter in the history of mankind. The thousands who survived the atrocities committed were forced into religious conversion, sold into slavery, and those who escaped formed the dispersed world diaspora of Armenians.

Other ethnic and Christian ethnic groups, such as the Assyrians and Ottoman Greeks, were also persecuted by the Ottoman government and their treatment is considered by many historians as part of the same genocidal policy.

The main organizers of the genocide were sentenced to death or imprisonment for their crimes in Ottoman military tribunals (1919-1920), yet the sentences of these tribunals were never enforced.

This evocation contains a lesson for our time, because in view of the current level of nationalism, xenophobia and intolerance worldwide, it is essential to remember the abyss of the past. It is also through the culture of memory that the Assembly of the Republic reaffirms its commitment to upholding human rights and underlines the importance of strengthening dialogue among peoples, religions, cultures and civilizations.

Thus, the Assembly of the Republic, meeting in plenary, expressed its sympathy for the victims of the Armenian genocide of 1915, thus preserving memory as an essential element in reconciling peoples and defending the fundamental values of humanity. Palace of St. Benedict, April 24, 2019

The MEPs,

Rubina Berardo PSD, Emília Cerqueira PSD, António Cardoso PS, Ana Rita Bessa CDS, Assunção Cristas CDS, João Almeida CDS, Paulo Pisco PS, Carla Sousa PS, André Silva PAN, Margarida Mano PSD, Paulo Trigo Pereira NINSC, Paulo Neves PSD, Fernando Negrão PSD, Paula Teixeira da Cruz PSD, Hugo Costa PS, Duarte Marques PSD, Teresa Leal Coelho PSD.