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    Canada's stance for 'genocide' no indictment for Turkey-official

    Hurriyet Daily News with wires
    23.04.2009 - 13:37 | Son Güncelleme:

    ISTANBUL - Canada said Wednesday its recognition of Armenians claims regarding the 1915 incidents is not an indictment of modern Turkey, after Ankara recalled its ambassador in protest.

    "Canada's position on the Armenian genocide is not an indictment of modern Turkey, nor is Turkish Ambassador Rafet Akgunay's temporary return to Ankara for consultations, a break in our diplomatic relations," AFP quoted Natalie Sarafian, citing an e-mailed statement.

     

    Turkey on Wednesday recalled its envoy its ambassador in Canada's capital Ottowa after Canadian ministers attended a commemoration night organized to mark the so-called "Armenian genocide". Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper also issued a letter of support to the organization.

     

    This was the second time Turkey has recalled its ambassador to Canada over the so called genocide. In 2006, Turkey criticized Harper for remarks he made in support of recognizing the 1915 incidents as "genocide" and recalled its ambassador. It also pulled out of a military exercise in Canada in protest.

     

    Armenia, with the backing of the diaspora, claims up to 1.5 million of their kin were slaughtered in orchestrated killings in 1915.

     

    Turkey rejects the claims saying that 300,000 Armenians, along with at least as many Turks, died in civil strife that emerged when Armenians took up arms, backed by Russia, for independence in eastern Anatolia.

     

    Turkey has offered to form a joint commission to investigate what happened in 1915 and has opened all official archives; Armenia however has continued to drag its feet on accepting the offer.

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