Armenian Genocide

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    The US President Joe Biden is preparing to formally acknowledge the Armenian Genocide.

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    • According to the Armenian National Institute, an American non-profit organisation, 30 countries officially recognise the Armenian Genocide.
      • Many Countries including India, that have not formally recognised the Armenian Genocide have primarily adopted this stance in the interests of their wider foreign policy decisions and because of their geopolitical interests in the region. 

    Armenian Genocide

    • It was a campaign of deportation and mass killing conducted against the Armenian subjects of the Ottoman Empire by the Young Turk government during World War I (1914–18)from eastern Anatolia.
    • According to estimates, approximately 1.5 million Armenians died during the genocide, either in massacres and in killings, or from ill-treatment, abuse and starvation.
    • Armenians charge that the campaign was a deliberate attempt to destroy the Armenian people and, thus, an act of genocide. 
      • The Armenian diaspora marks April 24 as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day.
    • The Turkish government has resisted calls to recognize it and contending that, although atrocities took place, there was no official policy of extermination implemented against the Armenian people as a group.

    What is Genocide?

    • Article Two of the UN Convention on Genocide of December 1948 describes Genocide is an internationally recognized crime where acts are committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group.

    Major cause of Genocide 

    • The Armenian Genocide occurred during the First World War, and in many ways a direct result of the developments during the war. 
    • The Armenians in the Ottoman Empire were Christians by faith and the Ottoman Caliphate feared that the Armenians would bear allegiance to neighbouring countries, Russia for instance, with similar religious affiliations than the Ottoman empire, especially during a war
    • This resulted in the Ottoman Turks engaging in a mass-removal campaign of Armenians from the border areas along the Eastern Front.

    Impacts of recognising Armenian Genocide by US

    • The recognition of the Armenian Genocide by the US would be symbolic, it would mean much for the Armenian diaspora but it would have a little legal impact on Turkey, other than becoming a cause for embarrassment for the country and perhaps giving other countries the impetus to also acknowledge the genocide.
    • Turkey Response:
      • Turkey’s Foreign Minister said that such moves would only set back the already strained relationship between Washington D.C. and Ankara, both of whom are North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies.
    • Turkey could slow non-NATO operations at Incirlik Air Base, located in Adana, that American forces use as a base and a station for equipment in the region.
    • Turkey could initiate military action against Kurdish fighters allied with US forces in northeast Syria.

    Source :IE