The Turkish government has cautioned Germany against classifying a century-old Ottoman Empire campaign to deport and kill Armenians as genocide.
The warning made on May 18 comes two weeks before the Bundestag, the lower house of Germany’s parliament, is set to discuss the topic.
“Speaking about it without historical or legal proof is nothing other than a misuse of political power,” said Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin, as quoted by DPA, adding that the issue has actually been put to rest, but is “continually put on the agenda again and again under different pretexts.”
On May 9, one of the Vice Presidents of Bundestag, Claudia Roth, remembered that Ambassador of Turkey to Germany, Huseyin Avni Karslıoğlu, warned Bundestag about the draft bill on Recognizing the Armenian Genocide and responded “We don’t accept it. I hope the groups in parliament won’t obey Turkey once again and the draft will be accepted as planned.”
The German government is set to vote on the resolution on June 2 whether to officially condemn the displacement and killings of Armenians during the Ottoman Empire as genocide.
Armenia and about three dozen other countries refer to the deaths as genocide, a designation Turkey has routinely disputed when the question comes up in other countries.
More than 1.5 million people of the Christian minority were estimated to have been killed during the Armenian Genocide in 1915. As the successor to the Ottoman Empire, Turkey acknowledges some of the killings, but vehemently denies that it constituted a genocide.