Should the Armenian Genocide be recognised?

Should the killings in Armenia between 1915 and 1917 be recognised as genocide?


Between 1915 and 1917, an estimated 1,000,000 Armenians died at the hands of the CUP government in the Ottoman Empire. Occurring during the First World War, the Armenians were subject to forcible deportations, death marches through the desert, inadequate living conditions, mass murder and torture, under the guise of military necessity by the government. Because they were persecuted as a race, it is widely believed that their ordeal surmounts to genocide.

The word “genocide” was first coined by Raphael Lemkin in 1944, combining the Greek word of “genos”, meaning race, or group, with the root of the Latin word “cidera”, to kill, in the aftermath of the Second World War, claiming: “Would mass murder be an adequate name for such a phenomenon? We think not, since it does not connote the motivation of the crime, especially when the motivation is based upon racial, national or religious considerations.”[i] This was drafted to the UN, and approved by the majority of its members by 1948, and Turkey two years later. Despite its origin in the immediate aftermath of the Holocaust, the killings in Armenia were present in Lemkin’s mind when coining the word: “I became interested in genocide because it happened so many times. It happened to the Armenians, and after the Armenians Hitler took action”[ii] which shows that according to Lemkin, the events in Armenia were comparable in terms of genocide to the Holocaust. However, since then there has been much debate as to whether the events in Armenia actually amount to genocide, and the using the ‘G word’, as it has become known, is more controversial now than ever.

On one hand, there is a clear argument that what happened to the Armenians does amount to genocide. By any account, the Armenians were persecuted as a race, which does coincide with the genocide definition. Furthermore, it is agreed by almost every account that the Armenians were subject to torture, mass murder, compulsory deportations and inadequate living conditions, to name but a few of their sufferings. These also coincide with what makes genocide, as stated in the Genocide convention: “Article II of the Convention, repeated in Article 6 of the Rome Treaty of the ICC, decrees that genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

  • Killing members of the group;
  • Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
  • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
  • Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
  • Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”[iii]

This clearly supports the argument that the Ottoman Empire did commit genocide.

However, despite this, there are many arguments that support the argument that genocide did not occur. The Ottoman Empire at the time stated that the forcible deportations and killings were due to military necessity, which is still claimed by Turkey to this day. Reports of uprisings by the Armenians at the time, as well as the rising status of Turkey, have also contributed to this argument. Over a hundred years later, the debate still rages as the question remains: should the killings in Armenia between 1915-1917 be recognised as genocide?

To establish what happened between the Ottoman Empire and the Armenians, we must look at the relations between them prior to the First World War. Armenians are Christians, and were therefore a minority in the Muslim Ottoman Empire, yet most Armenians were lawyers, bankers, mechanics and merchants, which lead to resentment from many Muslims within the Ottoman Empire. As a result, the Armenians were openly discriminated against, they had to pay extra taxes and were often subject to pogroms – state supported violence designed in order to keep the Armenians in their place. These methods seemed to work, as for the most part of the eighteenth century, the Armenians were passive and submissive towards their Muslim rulers. However, in 1894, the Armenians peasant in Sassoun protested against paying extractions to the local government in addition to having money exorted from them by Kurdish chiefs (which they did so with government permission.) 200,000 Armenians were killed in what became known as the Hamidian Massacres, and while it did not amount to genocide, as it wasn’t planned by the central government, but did serve notice of the depths of racial and religious hatred that existed within the Ottoman Empire.

The eighteenth century had seen a time of revolution around the world; from the French Revolution, to the rise of European nationalism, advancements of European capitalism and the Industrial Revolution, as well as the expansion of Russia into the Caucasus and British shipping into the Black Sea, and in 1905, revolution erupted within the Ottoman Empire. The Sultan was overthrown, replaced by a new parliament known as: ‘Committee of Union and Progress’, which promised freedom and equality to all minorities, including the Armenians. However, it wasn’t long before nationalist fervour took over, and many supported the motion of ‘Turkey for the Turks’, and it wasn’t long before the new parliament claimed it wanted to free the Muslim world from the dominance of the infidel.

On the 1st August 1914, Germany declared war on Russia, starting the First World War. The next day, the Ottoman Empire signed a secret treaty with Germany, allying with them in the war. Thousands of Armenians men were conscripted into the army, before being rounded up and killed: “The CUP decided to disarm all the Armenian soldiers in the Ottoman army. They had decided that the Armenians were an unreliable group … from disarming them, they were thrown into labour batallions that is grunt work … and were easily segregated, rounded up and massacred en masse.”[iv] Within the Ottoman Empire, the civilian population was also targeted. The government authorised the looting of Armenian shops and homes, torture, beatings and killings, as well as calling for all Armenians to turn in their weapons. In June 1915, the government began ‘deporting’ the Armenians to the desert of Der-El-Zor, outside of the Ottoman Empire, and this continued until 1917. It’s acknowledged by all that many Armenians were killed, but the question is, was it genocide?

On one hand, it could be argued that there wasn’t a genocide, as Armenians were the masters of their own fate by uprising against the Ottoman government: “These victims were simply casualties of a civil war within a world war in which they were either authors of their own misfortune or should simply be added to the common tragedy in this bloody Anatolian theatre where Muslims and Christians, Turks and Greeks, Russians and Assyrians all suffered.”[v] This suggests that the Armenians were a by-product of the First World War, and there was no deliberate action on their behalf against the Armenians. This is supported by the first of a number of ‘facts’ listed on the current Republic of Turkey’s website, under their ‘Armenian Allegation of Genocide’ page: “FACT 2: Armenian losses were few in comparison to the over 2.5 million Muslim dead from the same period.”[vi] This shows that from the Turkish perspective, the Armenians weren’t deliberately targeted therefore it should not constitute as genocide.

Furthermore, the lack of statistics available at the time, hinder the argument that genocide was committed. While most historians would argue that 1,000,000 Armenians died during this time, there were no official census reports either immediately before or after the First World War that could provide information on how many died. Most Armenians claim that 1.5 million died, however this is refuted: “although church records counted 2.1 million Armenians in Anatolia, the Ottoman authorities reckoned 1.1 million – a figure denialists use to ridicule the claim that 1.5 million died.”[vii] To this day, Turkey uses the lack of definite statistics to refute the ‘Armenian Allegation of Genocide’, as stated on the Republic of Turkey’s official website: “Reliable statistics demonstrate that slightly less than 600,000 Anatolian Armenians died during the war period of 1912-22.”[viii]

Another argument used is that there is very little documentation from the government that explicitly orders the extermination of all Armenians in Anatolia, thus genocide can’t be proved: “Pro-Turkish historians and some Western government officials seem to think that genocide can only be carried out as a matter of declared state policy, and demand ‘unequivocal’ documentary evidence of a high-level government decision.”[ix] Moreover, due to the explicit planning of one of the most infamous genocides less than thirty years later, the lack of such evidence somewhat diminished the Armenian genocide claim: “The Armenian genocide cannot be proved as a matter of law because a ‘specific intent’ to destroy all or part of a racial or religious group means that there must be proof of an extermination order … there is no proof, they say, that the Ottoman government ordered the extermination of all Armenians; it merely relocated them. This may have been negligence, but they built no gas chambers and held no meeting to arrange the ‘final solution’.”[x]

Furthermore, the fact that some Armenians survived the war gives grounds for an argument that there cannot have been genocide as the population was not totally annihilated: “If such a Genocide occurred would there have been any Armenians living in this country?”[xi] This arises from the blurred lines of what constitutes as genocide. As there are many definitions, it can be easy to manipulate the word to fit the situation, thus while legally, genocide does not equate to destroying a race in its entirety, it is still used as a defence; not all of the Armenians were killed, thus it cannot equate to genocide.

Moreover, the Turkish government claim, as is stated on their official website to this day, that much of the evidence presented that supports the argument that there was genocide is biased: “Certain oft-cited Armenian evidence is of diminished value, having been derived from dubious and prejudicial sources.”[xii] This refers to the US Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau, who wrote openly about the horrors the Armenians endured. However, the current Turkish government claim that he: “visited the Ottoman Empire with political not humanitarian aims … his intent was to uncover or manufacture news hat would goad the U.S. into joining the war. Given that motive, Morgenthau sought to malign the Ottoman Empire.”[xiii] This would suggest that genocide did not occur, as the accounts given, portraying the Ottoman Empire unfavourably, had an ulterior motive, and thus were not totally transparent.

Another reason that genocide is denied is that the Armenians were considered ‘terrorists’, and thus any action taken against them was necessary: “these killings were local and isolated military actions necessary to put down revolts that had been instigated by Armenian terrorist groups”[xiv]. This statement, released by the Turkish government is one of many that claim the Armenians were plotting against the state. Furthermore, by using the words: ‘local’ and ‘isolated’, they are denying genocide by contradicting its definition.

Similarly, claims that the Armenians instigated and were embroiled in a civil war are also used to deny genocide, as suggested by American demographer Justin McCarthy: “millions of Muslims in the region were also massacred in this period and many at the “hands of Armenian insurgents and militia”. He has contended that all of those deaths during World War I were the product of intercommunal warfare between Turks, Kurds and Armenians”[xv]. This suggests that the Armenians may have provoked Turkish violence, and also that there was an issue of conflict within the Ottoman Empire that wasn’t limited to the Turks and Armenians. This therefore suggests that the Armenians weren’t targeted at all, thus couldn’t have been targeted because of their race.

However, on the other hand, there is a strong argument for genocide. Raphael Lemkin, the lawyer who coined the word ‘genocide’ to the UN, strongly believed that the Armenians were subject to genocide: “The Armenian massacres and deportations were uppermost in his mind when he coined the word”.[xvi] In addition, he believes that the fact it’s not recognised, makes the crime worse: “Raphael Lemkin believes genocide is a wound against all humanity. It’s denial which ensures the wound can never heal.”[xvii]

It cannot be ignored that much of what the Armenians endured coincides with many other genocides. The Armenians were constantly referred to as ‘infidels’ or even ‘dogs’ by the Turks, and in the Bosnian genocide it was reported that: “Resic, however, was happy to massacre them all. For him, they were lice … ‘tumours’ and ‘bloodsuckers’ – the language of dehumanization which routinely flourished in the course of genocide (in Rwanda, the Tutsis were usually described as ‘cockroaches’, whilst leaders of the Serb Republic regularly referred to their Muslim neighbours as ‘tubercular microbes’).”[xviii] The similarities between the Rwandan and Bosnian genocides and what happened to the Armenians support the argument that there was genocide. Moreover, “Other familiar indicia of genocidal intent are attacks which single out the intelligentsia or cultural leadership of the victim group (such as the arrests and subsequent killings of the victim group (such as the arrests and subsequent killings of hundreds of Armenians intellectuals, lawyers, writers and cultural figures in Constantinople on and immediately after 24 April 1915) and attacks on the groups’ religious and cultural symbols”.[xix]Here we see that as with the genocide definition, the Armenians were subject to attacks of their leaders: religious, spiritual and financial, which again are very similar to characteristics of genocide. Another characteristic of the events that happened to the Armenians is the confiscation of property: “Proof of the genocidal intentions of the CUP government emerges from its programme of confiscation of Armenian property, which was seized by the state without recompense”.[xx] The CUP knew that when the Armenians were leaving on the deportations, they were not going to be returning, thus sought to claim the property and possessions left behind. Not only does this prove their genocidal intent, but provides an eerie precedent to Nazi confiscation of Jewish property during the next World War.

Furthermore, arguments that the deportations that the Armenians were subject to were anything other than deliberate actions intended to destroy all or most of the Armenians population are also easily dismissed: “’Evacuation’ for the Nazis, like ‘relocation’ for the Young Turks, is the euphemism for a procedure in which the existence of most of the condemned race will be ended.”[xxi] This is supported by documents from Talaat Pasha himself: “[They were] marched to Aleppo … this area was well known for the harshness of its climate, and for the savagery of the Bedouin tribes who then roamed it. There were no possibility of agriculture or any sustainable crop: only recently the government had been told of its utter inhospitality for resettling the Muhacir refugees from the Balkans – ‘they would all be dead of hunger’, Talaat had told parliament in 1914.”[xxii] This shows that the Young Turk government knowingly and willingly put the Armenians through inhumane conditions, with the strong likelihood that their journey would end in death. This wasn’t the result of military necessary, thus the only reason the Armenians were killed this way was because of their race.

Claims that the deportations were necessary for civilians to escape war, such as that made by Turkish MP’s: “It was a relocation to other parts of the Ottoman Empire of only the Eastern Anatolian Armenians away from a war zone”[xxiii] can be easily disproven: “Documents presented to the tribunal showed that 61,000 of a 63,605 Armenian community in Ankara – a city very far from the war zone – were deported”[xxiv] The figures given here show that 95.9% of the Armenian population being removed from a town far away from the battle zone. Therefore, military necessity cannot be used as an excuse for these deportations, and the fact that such a large percentage of the population was killed both suggest that this was genocide. This is not limited to Ankara, as it happened in many regions throughout the Ottoman Empire: “This is the big euphemism – the use of the pallid word ‘relocation’ to describe forcible expropriation of land and home, mass executions of menfolk, followed by marching women and children at gunpoint for hundreds of miles unprotected from climate or disease or pillaging brigands, and ending in a typhoid-ridden swamp in a desert, without food or housing. As for the ‘relocatees’ living ‘in or near the war zone’, the map shows just how far most of them lived from that zone.” [xxv] The geographical facts, as supported by the map, show that there was no military necessity behind the deportations, thus suggesting that those who were forcibly evacuated were selected because of their race, which does suggest genocide. Furthermore, the accounts of forcible religious conversions to avoid being killed are synonymous with the common definition of genocide.

There is also a claim by genocide deniers that some of the pillaging, murder and rape of the Armenians when they were deported was not done directly by the government, and they had no control over the wandering bandits in the desert, thus meaning that there was no genocide. However, the Ottoman government had effective control over the region, which means that it does amount to genocide: “The state will be responsible if it has ‘effective control’ over those who carried out the genocidal acts … The Ottoman government was certainly in ‘overall control’ of Anatolia in 1915 and of those who carried out the atrocities there.”[xxvi] Furthermore, the government not only had control over these people, but there is a great deal of proof suggesting that they actually ordered the attacks, which makes them directly accountable: “On the way, they began to be attacked. Not just by spontaneous operating bandits but by death squads and vengeful vindictive tribes organized by the unionist special organisations … the governments agents.”[xxvii] This supports the argument that this was in fact genocide, as the tribes were organised by the ‘government’s agents’.

Moreover, the treatment of the Armenians at the hands of the government whilst they were deported gives a clearer indication to the Ottoman government’s motives, as indicated by eye-witness accounts: “All the Armenian men in the village were rounded up and she, her mother, and the other women and children in the village were shut inside a church courtyard. When she came down, the girl said, ‘They’re cutting the men’s throats and throwing them into the river.’ The women and children were then sent up on a deportation march. The elderly and infirm and those who lagged behind were killed on the road.”[xxviii] The sheer brutality that the Armenians were subject suggests that their treatment derives from more than military necessity, and there was an ulterior motive.

Similarly, the brutal attacks faced by the Armenian women show that ‘military necessity’ can’t be used as an excuse: [I] “counted ‘the remains of not less than 10,000 Armenians … nearly all of them women, lain flat on their backs and showing signs of barbarous mutilation by the bayonets of the gendarmes’.”[xxix] This is proof that the Armenians were subjected to barbaric and inhumane treatment at the hands of the Turks, which goes far beyond what can be excused as military necessity: “Rape was a universal component of the Armenian genocide. Very few women were spared, even old women [were raped], but the most horrendous part of the rape was the rape of young children, female children, as young as six”[xxx]. Moreover, the fact that so many victims were women also suggests that this treatment was unprovoked, as this was an era where women had very little civil liberties, especially in a Muslim country, thus were unlikely to have been openly opposing the government. Therefore, it is likely that these women were attacked because of their race only, which suggests that genocide did occur.

This is also shown by the treatment of Armenian children: “Some children were forcibly removed and placed with Muslim families (Article II(e) of the Genocide convention identifies ‘forcibly transferring children of the group to another group’ as an act of genocide if committed with the requisite intent).” [xxxi]This clearly shows that what the Armenian children were subject to coincides with an article of the genocide convention. Furthermore, the lack of consideration between Armenian adults and children by the Ottoman government shows that the Armenians were being persecuted as a race: “In Trabzon, they decided to take men, women and children out in boats, and just dumped them in the black sea, where they drowned.”[xxxii] “The most extensive operations of mass burning of children took place in Bitlis province … many Armenian women and children were burnt alive as the orphans of their orphanage. The mass burning of children took place also in Der Zor, … Kharpert and Diarbekir. An equally large number of Armenian children were destroyed through mass drownings at the Mesopotamian lower ends of the Euphrates River, especially in the area of Deir Zor.”[xxxiii] This is backed up by reports by the US Ambassador Henry Morgenthau, who claimed: “hundreds of children were bayoneted by the Turks and thrown into the Euphrates.” As children, they would have been unable to have played an active part in opposing the government in any way, the only reason they would be killed was because of their race, which supports the argument that what happened to the Armenians as a whole amounts to genocide.

Another argument proposed by genocide deniers is that there could be no genocide because some Armenians remained in Anatolia after the war. However, genocide does not necessarily equate to complete extermination of a race, thus the fact that Armenians remained does not mean that they weren’t subjected to genocide: “Genocide … does not necessarily mean extermination of a race”[xxxiv] This is supported by another clarification: “The object does not have to be the extermination of the entire group: a part of it will suffice, even a small part, defined geographically.”[xxxv] Moreover, it is proven that at least 60% of the Armenians race was killed at the hands of the Ottoman government: “’Genocide’ involves the extinction of a race or any part of a race. The extinction of over 60 per cent of a race is a very substantial part”.[xxxvi]

The main defence held by the Turkish government, both then and now, is that the Armenians were uprising against the government, as demonstrated by the ‘uprising’ in Van, where over 55 000[xxxvii] Armenian civillians died. The Turkish claim they were rebelling against the government alongside the Russian army, however this is refuted by Geoffrey Robertson, QC: “There was no uprising in his province, and his systematic persecution of Armenians began before the uprising in Van. He also claims that the orders for the attack came directly from the government: “The Armenians at Van did not revolt – they defended their quarter against aggression by troops under orders from the Turkish governor, Djevdet Bey.”[xxxviii]The events in Van were shocking and gruesome, highlighting the extremes that the CUP government was willing to go to in order to wipe out the Armenian people. Genocide deniers claim that the town of Van rebelled against government rule, thus provoking intervention, yet this claims that the attack was unprovoked and not a military necessity. Furthermore, while the events in Van were used by the Turkish government as an excuse to justify deporting hundreds of thousands of Armenians all over the country, many of these deportations had already begun: “In any event, the deportations from Zeytun and other parts of Cilicia had begun before the so-called ‘revolt’ at Van, and the deportations continued from places that were nowhere near the front line and which no ‘military necessity’ could justify.”[xxxix] This supports the argument that there was genocide, as contrary to government reports, this claims that there was no uprising in Van that had to be suppressed, thus no reason for the army to invade and kill so many. The killings at Van, if unprovoked as suggests, supports the argument that there was genocide.

In addition to the nature of the civillians in Van, despite the Turkish reports of revolts and uprisings, there are many reports that the Armenians throughout the region were mostly loyal and passive: “Armenian religious and political leaders in 1914-15 were actually preaching loyalty and placidity as well as encouraging young men to fulfil their Ottoman army obligations.”[xl] This supports the argument for genocide recognition as it suggests that there was no uprising against the state or government, and for the most part, the Armenians were loyal and peaceful citizens, thus meaning the attacks on them were unprovoked and unlawful. “Liberation fighters … had little support from the community leaders such as churchmen and merchants … Whilst it is true that the Russian army had several Armenian brigades, they were mostly made up from Armenians living in Russia … Besides which, the convoys compromised of old men, women and children who were in no sense violent political violent revolutionaries or of any potential assistance to the Russian army.”[xli] This shows that there was no communal conspiracy among the Armenians as a whole. The most radical were not supported by the majority, and thus it cannot be argued that the slaughter of almost all the Armenians was necessary to suppress the threat against the Ottoman Empire.

However, what is possibly the most convincing argument is the physical evidence. One example of this is the thousands of skeletons that remain in the desert of Der-El-Zor to this day: “Last month I visited the desert of Deir-ez-Zor in the killing fields, caves and rivers where a million Armenians perished. I was shown a piece of land that keeps subsiding. It is called the Place of the Armenians. So many thousands of bodies were buried there that the ground has been sinking for the last 80 years. Human thigh bones and ribs come to the surface”[xlii] This account is supported by that of Robert Fisk, a Middle East Correspondent for The Independent, who also claimed to have unearthed many skeletons while visiting Deir-el-Zor. Another example of physical evidence is the telegrams and cables to and from the Ottoman government, such as those received by Henry Morgenthau, that prove genocidal intent: “Talaat sent a coded telegram to the Young Turk party, a telegram whose authority has been accepted by everyone except Turkey. [It read:] ‘The government has decided to destroy completely, all Armenians living in Turkey. An end must be put to their existence, however criminal the measures taken must be.”[xliii] This was also shown in uncovered at the trials of the CUP government after the war: “A military commandant who admitted that ‘underlying the entire scheme of deportations’ was ‘a policy of extermination’. Evidence from other cables, said the prosecutor, showed that ‘deportation’ meant ‘massacre’”.[xliv]This was during the first trial in February 1919, of Young Turk functionaries in Yozgat. Military personnel who participated in the deportations stated via cable that the intent was to exterminate the Armenians, and this was a ‘policy’, which supports the genocide argument.

In conclusion, it cannot be doubted that there are notable arguments that suggest that the killings should not be classed as genocide: there were millions of casualties from all sides during the First World War, there’s a lack of explicit incriminating evidence, claims of a civil war, the fact that the Armenians weren’t completely annihilated, and suggestions that the Armenians instigated the killings as they were rebelling against the government. However, it is my belief that what happened to the Armenians did amount to genocide. The Armenians were subject to forcible deportation / relocation schemes, which were proven to intentionally end in death for the majority of the Armenians. In addition, there is much evidence to suggest that for the most part, the majority of Armenians remained passive and loyal throughout the war, not revolting as the government claimed. Moreover, the barbaric nature of the treatment of the Armenians: mass murder, mass torture, forced to live in inhumane conditions, rape, mutilation, compulsory conversions, kidnapping, and being abandoned in the Syrian desert to starve, to name but a few, all suggest there was a greater motive behind the killings. Furthermore, whilst it is true that millions of Turkish people died during this period, it was mainly in combat, whereas the Armenian losses composed of men, women, children and the elderly civillians.

This leaves us with one of the most troubling questions of the twentieth century: if the Armenian genocide had been properly recognised at the time, what would have happened? If the perpetrators of the Armenian killings had been brought to justice, it is possible that later genocides would not have occurred. I have already drawn comparisons between what happened to the Armenians and the Rwandan genocide, the Bosnian genocide and the Holocaust. However, it is the Holocaust that holds particular importance, as on the eve of the invasion of Poland, Adolf Hitler said: “kill without pity all people of Polish origin, men, women and children … Who still talks today about the annihilation of the Armenians?’


[ii] De Waal, Thomas – ‘Great Catastrophe’, page 133

[iii] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 97

[iv] Ron Suny, Professor of Political Science – University of Chicago

[v] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 3


[vii] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 13


[ix] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 101

[x] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 5-6




[xiv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 42

[xv] McCarthy, Justin –

[xvi] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 17

[xvii] Fergal Keane, BBC reporter

[xviii] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 64

[xix] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 106

[xx] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 228

[xxi] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 6

[xxii] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 51

[xxiii] Aktan, Gunduz – Former Turkish Ambassador, September 2000

[xxiv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’’ – Page 84

[xxv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’’ – Page 135

[xxvi] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’’ – Page 119

[xxvii] Professor Halil Berkley – Sabanci Univeristy

[xxviii] Çetin, Fethiye – My Grandmother, A Memoir

[xxix] Davis, Leslie – US Vice-Consul, stationed at Harput, September 1915

[xxx] Vahakn Dadrian, Director of Genocide research, Zoryan Institute

[xxxi] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 53

[xxxii] Ron Suny, Professor of Political Science – University of Chicago


[xxxiv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 19

[xxxv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 98

[xxxvi] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 139


[xxxviii] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 74

[xxxix] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 74

[xl] Bloxham, Donald

[xli] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 141-142

[xlii] Matossian, Nouritza –

[xliii] Morgenthau, Henry – November 1915 – The Hidden Holocaust

[xliv] Robertson, Geoffrey – ‘An Inconvenient Genocide-Who Now Remembers the Armenians?’ – Page 84


Who recognizes the Armenian Genocide?

As of October 2015, 28 countries recognise the Armenian Genocide:

  • Armenia

    Map showing countries that recognise the genocide, partially recognise the genocide and don't recognise the genocide.
    Map showing countries that recognise the genocide, partially recognise the genocide and don’t recognise the genocide.
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Czech Republic
  • Chile
  • Cyprus
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Lebanon
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Russia
  • Slovakia
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Syria
  • Uruguay
  • Vatican City
  • Venezuela

The pattern here is that these countries are mostly located in Europe and South America, along with Russia and Canada, and a few in the Middle East. No African or Australasian countries recognise the Armenian Genocide, (although the parliament of New South Wales in Australia does recognise it), and very few Asian countries recognise the genocide. Crucially, the USA doesn’t recognise the genocide officially – 43 of the states do recognise it (Alabama, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, Texas, West Virginia and Wyoming do not), but the motion to recognise it as genocide has never passed through the senate, despite many motions. The United Kingdom doesn’t officially recognise the genocide either, although the Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland do. Similarly, other countries that partially recognise the genocide (i.e. have parliaments/regions/cities that recognise the genocide but are yet to do so as a whole include Iran and Spain.)

Turkey (modern day descendant of the Ottoman Empire) and Azerbaijan deny the genocide.