ISTANBUL BAR: IF FRENCH PARLIAMENT APPROVES THE DRAFT ABOUT GENOCIDE, IT WILL DESTROY FREEDOM OF THOUGHT

Anatolian Times, Turkey
May 18 2006

ISTANBUL - Istanbul Bar has reacted strongly to the draft law which
will be debated by the French parliament on May 18th and bring forth
punishments such as imprisonment terms and fine for those who deny
so-called Armenian genocide.

Releasing a written statement on Wednesday, Istanbul Bar said,
"Turkish nation was defending its homeland between the years of 1919
and 1922. During that warfare, both Turkish and Armenian people died.

Such a tragedy cannot be described as genocide. Hovhannes Katchaznouni,
the first Prime Minister of Armenia, acknowledged this historical fact
saying that Turks acted with the instinct of defending themselves,
and that Armenian people were used by Russia and British and French
imperialism."

"If the French parliament approves the draft law about so-called
Armenian genocide, it will destroy freedom of thought which was gained
as a result centuries-long struggles. I will also prove France's
returning to a totalitarian understanding," it said.

Istanbul Bar called on French MPs to think once again before casting
their votes since the draft would have a serious impact on the friendly
relations between the two countries.