FRENCH BUSINESSMAN SAYS THE BILL DOES NOT REPRESENT MAJORITY OF FRENCH PEOPLE

Today's Zaman
Dec 29 2011
Turkey

29 December 2011 / AYTEN CIFTCI / EMRE DEMIR , ─░STANBUL/PARIS
Yves-Marie Laouenan, deputy chairman of the Turkish-French Trade
Association, stated that the bill that makes denial of the alleged
Armenian genocide a punishable crime, which passed in the French
Lower House on Dec. 22, was approved by a small community and does
not represent the majority of French people.

He pointed out that everything regarding the genocide bill came into
existence without the knowledge of a majority of French people and
added it is unlikely the senate will approve the bill. "We don't think
that this bill will pass through the senate. Today, most intellectuals,
historians and politicians began to raise their voice by pointing
out that the bill is a violation of constitutional law," said Laouenan.

He noted that the issue recently has occupied a significant place
in the French media as historians and intellectuals quarrel over
the bill. Laouenan, who has been living in Turkey for 18 years,
said they contacted the French media to prevent the passage of the
bill by the senate to preserve the friendship between the countries,
which have had a significant amount of trade.

In an address to the press in ─░stanbul on Thursday, he said they
are in contact with French politicians. Ankara reacted furiously
when the lower house of the French parliament last week approved the
bill, recalling its ambassador from Paris, banning French military
aircraft and warships from landing and docking in Turkey and freezing
political and economic meetings. Zeynep Necipoglu, the president of
the association, said trade between the countries reached 12 billion
euros. In addition, the number of French firms that operate in Turkey
soared to 400 from 15 over the last 25 years.




From: A. Papazian