Monday, April 20, 2015

#Pope ‪#‎Tawadros‬ II travels to ‪#‎Armenia‬ for genocide anniversary

The commemoration of the centennial of the Armenian genocide will take place between 20 and 26 April


Armenian protesters demonstrate near the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, January 28, 2015

Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II has travelled to Armenia for the country’s genocide anniversary, leading a delegation of 115 journalists and Armenian expats, Al-Ahram Arabic news website reported on Monday.

The delegation will attend the commemoration of the hundredth anniversary of the Armenian genocide in the capital Yerevan from 20 – 26 April.

French President François Hollande, Russian President Vladimir Putin and President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades are also expected to attend the memorial, among other heads of states.

Delegations from Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Kuwait and UAE will also be present.

The Egyptian government and the Coptic Church have recently condemned Turkey's long-standing refusal to admit its crimes against the Armenian people.

Armenian Genocide: 100th anniversary of a 'great catastrophe'

Armenians say up to 1.5 million of them were killed between 1915 and 1917 during the final days of the Ottoman Empire, and have long tried to get international recognition of the massacres as genocide.

The killings began after the Armenians were blamed for siding with the Russians during the ongoing world war one and the Young Turks, a movement of army officers who wanted to modernise the country, began a campaign to portray the Armenians as a kind of fifth column, a threat to the state.

Turkey, born from the remains of the Ottoman Empire, has vehemently denied a systematic mass killing of Armenians.

Armenia, which gained its independence in the aftermath of the fall of the former Soviet Union, has no diplomatic ties with Ankara due to animosity over accusations and denials on the issue.