Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Questions (95)

Micheál Martin


95. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade his plans to recognise the Armenian genocide that occurred 104 years ago (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46021/19]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

The Government has expressed its deepest sympathy for the enormous suffering of the Armenian people during the terrible events of 1915 which resulted in the tragic deaths of very large numbers of the Armenian population in the Ottoman Empire.

No Irish Government has taken a position on the recognition of the events of 1915 as genocide, believing that it is not in a position to adjudicate on this contentious matter, involving the consideration of a number of legal issues and an assessment of the actions and intentions of many parties during that time. Ireland follows the practice of recognising genocide only where it has been established by a judgment of an international court or where there is international consensus on the matter.

These terrible events continue to overshadow relations between Armenia and Turkey and the two sides maintain sharply different historical interpretations of these events. As the Irish experience demonstrates, the process of reconciliation and coming to terms with the past is never easy. Ireland would urge Armenia and Turkey to take advantage of any opportunity to progress reconciliation for the good of their peoples and the wider region.