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Sweden, Turkey foreign ministers condemn Armenian genocide resolution

[JURIST] Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt [official website] and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu [official profile] Saturday jointly denounced the Swedish Parliament's Thursday passage of a resolution [text, in Swedish] recognizing the Ottoman Empire's killing of Armenians between 1915 and 1923 as genocide [JURIST news archive]. At a meeting of European foreign ministers in northern Finland Davutoglu questioned the rationale [Reuters report] of the move, one that Bildt characterized as the "politicization of history." Davutoglu insisted that his country would not succumb to political pressure. Both ministers noted concerns that the resolution would undermine the progress that Armenia and Turkey have made toward stabilizing their relations.

The Swedish Parliament adopted the resolution [JURIST report] by a vote of 131-130, prompting Turkey to recall its ambassador [press release] from Stockholm and cancel official events in Sweden. The Swedish resolution came only a week after the US House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs [official website] voted 23-22 to adopt [JURIST report] a resolution [H Res 252 text] labeling the killings as genocide. The US government has indicated that it will seek to block the resolution [JURIST report] from being put before the full House of Representatives. A similar resolution was passed by the committee in 2007, but it never reached the House floor [JURIST reports].

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