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    Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian addresses the 71st United Nations General Assembly in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 23, 2016.

    Yerevan Welcomes French Law Criminalizing Denial of Armenian Genocide

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    Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian praised the French Senate's decision to criminalize the denial of the Armenian genocide, the country's Foreign Ministry said Friday.

    YEREVAN (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, the French parliament's upper chamber voted 156 to 146 to approve a draft law criminalizing the denial of the genocide. The bill envisages imprisonment of up to a year or a fine for wrongdoers.

    "We welcome the adoption by the Senate of the bill criminalizing the denial of the Armenian Genocide, which was approved by the National Assembly [the French parliament’s lower house] back in summer," a Foreign Ministry statement said.

    He added that the bill demonstrated France's commitment to to the prevention of "new crimes."

    About 1.5 million Armenians were killed between 1915 and 1923, hundreds of thousands were forced out of the country, in a campaign by the Ottoman forces. Turkey has disputed the figure and denied the genocide, blaming the deaths on wartime fighting.

    As of 2016, the governments of 28 countries and 45 US states officially recognize the Armenian Genocide.

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    Armenian Genocide, Edward Nalbandian, Armenia, France
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