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Israel should not have the sole rights to using the term genocide, an Israeli scholar says.

“Israel needs to ask itself where its values lie,” says Dr. Chen Bram, a research fellow at the Truman Institute of the Hebrew University.

“On the one hand, Azerbaijan is an important ally for Israel, and we should not jeopardize this relationship. And of course relations with Turkey are particularly complex. On the other hand, maybe Israel can actually help bring about peace between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Israel should be able to stand up to Azerbaijan and say, ‘We are your ally, but we would like to establish relations with Armenia, too, and you should not view this as a move that will harm our relations.’ This might cause a bit of an uproar at first, but it’s possible to do. I think it’s a shame Israel hasn’t made such an effort until now.”

Bram added that a number of countries that have diplomatic relations with Azerbaijan and Turkey have recognized the Armenian Genocide, Jerusalem Post reported.

“I’m not saying it will go over smoothly, but things will eventually settle down. A number of Israeli representatives in Yerevan made inappropriate comments about the Jews’ unique connection with the Holocaust, but we need to accept that each genocide has its own special characteristics. And we cannot deny that the Armenian Genocide and the world’s reaction to it had a paramount effect on the Nazis’ ability to carry out the Shoah. Israel has lots of room to make improvements in this area. Luckily, the Armenians know how most Israelis feel about this issue, but this does not absolve us of the responsibility to make this change official,” he said.

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