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    MEMORY DAY OF GENOCIDE AGAINST ARMENIANS

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    YEREVAN, April 24 (RIA Novosti) - Armenia and the Armenian community abroad mark the Day of Memory of the victims of genocide against Armenians in the Ottoman Empire. Yerevan hosts today a "torch procession" to the Memorial to the victims of genocide against Armenians of 1915.

    The statement of the procession organizers - youth department of the Dashnaktsutyun party, received by RIA Novosti, notes that in the late 19th - early 20th centuries, the Turkish state carried out genocide against the Armenian people, which was "continued in 1988 by Azerbaijani Turks." From the second half of the nineteenth century to 1920, Ottoman Turkey carried out regular persecutions of Armenians, whose peak fell on 1915, when over 1.5 million Armenians were killed in different regions of Western Armenia, making part of the Ottoman Empire.

    In historians' opinion, the roots of the tragic events of the beginning of the twentieth century lie in the antagonism of great powers in the south of Europe.

    By 1914, when WWI started, great powers had not reached consent on "the Armenian issue." As during warfare on the Caucasian front in 1915 Russian troops were successful, Turks took the decision to make an ethnic cleansing in Western Armenia, believing that the Armenian population will sympathize with Russia seeing the country as the liberator of Armenian lands.

    European powers were unable to stop mass crimes against Armenians committed by Turks. Moreover, Germany and Austro-Hungary helped Turks "cleanse" Western Armenia an a number of other territories of the Ottoman Empire of Armenian population.

    In the opinion of Dashnaktsutyun party members, the last act of genocide was the murder in Budapest in 2004 of an Armenian officer by an Azerbaijani serviceman.

    The fact of the genocide against the Armenian people has been recognized by many countries - Russia, France, Argentina, Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, Uruguay etc.

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