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ISTANBUL. – In his new article in Turkey’s Posta daily, leading Turkish journalist and analyst Mehmet Ali Birand reflected on the French Senate’s passing of the bill that criminalizes the denial of genocides, including the Armenian Genocide, and noted that whatever happened has happened and that Turkey must now concentrate on 2015, the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.   

“No matter how severely we react, it is all the same; Sarkozy attained his goal. With this, Sarkozy killed several birds [with one stone]. Prior to the [French presidential] elections, he prevented the Armenian votes from going to the socialists, and, as a president who comes across against Turkey, he took the extreme right wing to his side,” Birand noted, stressing that all Senate members, who took the floor, accepted that Turkey was guilty, and that simply the criminalization bill was discussed.    

The Turkish journalist also wrote that both France and the entire world accept that genocide was committed, and that they solely examine as to how the deniers should be punished. 

Mehmet Ali Birand also advised Turkey to beware 2015. “The Armenians will launch a huge worldwide campaign in connection with the 100th anniversary of the Genocide. Our current reactions must be calculated in such way that we are able to give a correct answer in 2015. Our present-day extreme measures will isolate us. [And] Let us not forget that the US is next. [And] There could be Germany, or Spain, on the next day. We must decide now as to what we need to do at that time,” Birand noted, adding that Turkish PM Erdogan’s reaction was correct this time. 

To note, with a vote of 127 in favor and 86 against, France’s Senate passed Monday the bill that criminalizes the denial of the genocides which this country has formally recognized. And these are the Armenian Genocide and the Jewish Holocaust. This bill sets a one-year prison sentence plus a 45-thousand-Euro fine for anyone who denies these genocides. According to the regulations, the French President will ratify it within fifteen days of the Senate’s decision. And Turkey had announced earlier that if the bill were to pass, it will impose a number of sanctions against France.

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