Utenrikskomiteen i Representantenes Hus stemte torsdag for en resolusjon som sier at massakrene på armenerne var folkermord og skal betegnes som det. Tyrkia reagerte med å hjemkalle ambassadøren.
Tyrkia hadde, som det pleier, advart mot avstemningen på forhånd. Det har på ingen måter planer om å gi opp:
Despite the appeal, Mr Berman went ahead with the debate. He said Turkey was a «vital» ally but «nothing justifies Turkey’s turning a blind eye to the reality of the Armenian genocide.»
Turkey accepts that many Christian Armenians were killed by Ottoman forces but strongly denies that up to 1.5 million died and that it amounted to genocide – a term employed by many Western historians and some foreign parliaments.
In a statement issued after the vote, a Turkish government spokesman said: «We condemn this resolution which accuses the Turkish nation of a crime it has not committed. Following this development, our ambassador to Washington, Namik Tan, was recalled to Ankara for consultations.»
Armenia, however, described the vote as a boost for human rights. Edward Nalbandian, the Armenian Foreign Minister, told Reuters: «We highly appreciate the decision. This is further proof of the devotion of the American people to universal human values and is an important step towards the prevention of crimes against humanity.»