IN MEMORY OF THE VICTIMS OF THE GENOCIDE OF ARMENIANS COMMITTED BY THREE SUCCESSIVE TURKISH GOVERNMENTS IN WESTERN ARMENIA․

We must always remember that the genocide against Armenians is part of a broader spectrum of Armenian colonization, that dehumanization and extermination go hand in hand. The Armenian people have been subjected to a “war of annihilation” for more than a century. Using the term “war of extermination”, Jean Jaures understood the fullness of the tragedy that befell the Armenian people. The qualification of the “war of extermination” was later enshrined in international law by the term genocide, the starting point was to be the sad fate of the Armenian people.

According to MP Jean Jaures, the genocide against Armenians began during the Ottoman Empire “by the Sultan, who wanted to arrange a massacre, organize and lead with a knife” in successive waves, culminating in the period from 1915 to 1923. The extermination continues today, as we witnessed the Turkish-Azerbaijani aggression in 2020, during the coalition of its allies against the indigenous population of Artsakh. From Constantinople to the Caspian Sea, the mutilated corpses of a population more than 10,000 years old are buried underground in the land of their ancestors.

It was on the bodies of Armenians, that is, the remains of our ancestors, that the so-called modern Turkey was built on the plunder of the natural resources of Western Armenia, on the state of Western Armenia. On the eve of the  Genocide of Armenians Memorial Day, I would like to pay tribute to the intellectuals and politicians who defended their honor in France, defending the Armenian people. I would like to mention several famous names, including Anatole France, Francis de Presance, Pierre Charmette, Denis Cochin, Albert de Moon, Pierre Qwilleran, Charles Pegan, honored member of the Armenian national delegation Albert Vandal, writer, diplomat Arshag Chobanian, thanks to his conviction, he was able to convince these people to show goodwill in this common cause.

Throughout the entire anti-Armenian movement in France, that is, in 1878-1923, it is impossible not to understand the context of the genocidal massacre that took place during the second Turkish-Azerbaijani aggression.

– Firstly, Albert Vandal, a French historian and writer who condemned the silence of the elite at a conference on Armenia in 1897 and for the first time called the complicity of the press, bought to hush up mass killings, conspiratorial silence. Then, as now, the same conspiracy of silence is operating to seize the rich Armenian lands in occupied Artsakh.

– Then neutrality, indirectly or officially declared by the French foreign ministers, which yesterday, as today, contradicts the French policy of humanism and freedom, mass killings directed against freedom.

– Finally, the complicity of some States that yesterday, as today, were well aware of the mass killings thanks to the witnesses of the current diplomatic corps.

Today, I would like to solemnly ask France to join the Armenian movement with worthy respect, doing everything possible for the generosity  expressed by voting General Gouraud, ratifying the Treaty of Sevres.

In particular, the Armenian people expect the same reciprocity in terms of loyalty from France, which seems to be the last country that has not ratified the Treaty of Sevres, which de facto implements it while fulfilling its mandates. As the Armenian people are involved in the Eastern Legion, even more than a hundred years later, still intend to reason with the words of General Gouraud of August 29, 1920, which said: “Generous France will proudly remember that it was an honor to entrust the children of Armenia with a set of pins with which they worked with enthusiasm.”

This generosity, which was undermined by the Angora Agreement signed by the Kemalists in France in 1921, as a result of which the Kemalist terrorist forces killed 33,000 Armenians in Cilicia, must now be fully applied to the Armenian people. The role of France is huge for several reasons. First of all, from the point of view of peace, to ratify the Treaty of Sevres, France will finally and legally end the First World War.

Let me remind you that in the context of the treaties of  Paris, the final act of the end of the First World War was conditioned by the ratification of the Treaty of Sevres. The  struggle for the revision of borders in this region of the world is directly related to the decision of article 92 of the Treaty of Sevres, which was directly supported by Western Armenia (1920, Armenia ).

Secondly, France’s ratification of the Treaty of Sevres in terms of reparations will allow discussing the issue of reparations related to the genocide against Armenians because it is France that has the right to decide on compensation. The issue of reparations is completely independent, as some would like to believe in the recognition of the Genocide of Armenians.

Moreover, France, Russia, Great Britain, and the Entente already in 1915 spoke out in favor of classifying the mass murders committed by Turkey in Armenia as new crimes against humanity and civilization.

As for financial issues, the national interests of Armenia should correspond to the interests of Western Armenia, that is, the Armenia that was recognized in 1920. All the rights recognized by the Armenian people must be respected.

In this regard, I regret that the website of the Armenian Foreign Ministry does not present the full sections of Armenian national history.

In this case, it can be noted that, based on the sufferings of the Armenian people and its history, the state was recognized by no less than 34 states, in particular the State of Armenia. The work of the Armenian national delegation headed by Pogos Nubar, who was the head of the Armenian delegation at the peace conference, authorized Avetis Aharonian to sign the agreement. It is also necessary to mention the existence of the Wilson arbitration award, which is the highest legal act; very few states in the region can claim that they have defined their border by such an important act. Contrary to what is stated on this website, it should be noted that Western Armenia has not lost its indigenous population, since the Armenians of Western Armenia live in exile in different countries of the world, that the vast majority of the population of Eastern Armenia are direct descendants of genocide survivors, that, finally, our indigenous population, descendants of Genocide survivors , they live in the mountains of the Armenian Highlands, intend to preserve their traditional values, their heritage, their unshakable faith in this irreversible movement of the national revival of Western Armenia, becoming the state of Western Armenia.

I welcome the exemplary courage of these citizens, who are the real heroes of the nation. I also propose to make corrections required by international law on the website of the RA Parliament regarding the fact that the state is called Western Armenia, that other people who have been subjected to the atrocities of colonization live in this state, including: other people who have been subjected to the atrocities of colonization are called Armenians of Western Armenia.

On the other hand, I welcome the fact that the term “autonomous” has finally entered the official discourse, which is a big step forward, we can only welcome the work of the Assembly of Armenians of Western Armenia and the National Council of Western Armenia, who worked with the avant-garde more than twenty years ago to recognize the sovereignty of the Armenian people by all countries of the world within the framework of UN.

We continue this work at international forums on the realization of rights, in particular at the meeting of the expert mechanism on the rights of indigenous peoples, which traditionally takes place in July every year. As for the upcoming news, I have two comments. Firstly, the desire for independence of Artsakh, which has just survived the genocidal aggression, does not correspond in any way to the Armenian national interests as a whole.

The settlement of the Artsakh issue is largely connected with Western Armenia, recognized by Armenia in 1920, whose eastern border should be determined in accordance with article 92 of the Treaty of Sevres. The position of Western Armenia recognizes the autonomy of Artsakh and asserts, in accordance with international law, that the territory of Artsakh belongs to its jurisdiction.

Otherwise, Armenia is weakening as a result of gradual defeat, the first act of which was the occupation of Western Armenia, and then the separation of the Eastern Republic of Armenia from Armenia in 1920, taking into account the events in Nakhichevan and Javakhk under Soviet legislation, which no longer exists. Secondly, considering that the genocide continues over time, as I could remind you at the meeting of the Human Rights Council, it is absolutely unworthy to start any normalization process without taking into account the Government of Western Armenia, the sovereign Armenian people of Western Armenia.

Lydia Margosian

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Western Armenia.