Beginning in 1915, the Ottoman Empire perpetrated a genocide, killing 1.5 million Armenians. For decades, American leaders did not acknowledge this fact, due to pressure from Turkey. Until today.

Thank you @POTUS for your historic decision recognizing the #ArmenianGenocide. 1/7
Some two million Armenian-Americans live in the United States, and most are descendants of genocide survivors or victims.

Today’s change in US policy happened because of the tireless work of these individuals, who campaigned for decades on behalf of recognition. 2/7
For survivors & their families, struggling to have their experiences recognized was extremely painful.

US officials were forced to pretend that historical facts were just opinions & to deploy euphemisms to describe cold truths. This was wrong. 3/7
Turkey is a powerful country in a critical region. It is part of NATO. Our relationship matters. But President Erdogan’s success in blackmailing & bullying the US (and other countries) not to recognize the Armenian Genocide likely emboldened him as he grew more repressive. 4/7
. @POTUS’s #ArmenianGenocide recognition comes at a critical time. Genocide denial is rising. Facts are under increasingly sophisticated attack, which helps those committing atrocities obscure their crimes& maintain impunity. Justice & accountability require telling the truth. 5/7
Today is about the truth:

That the Ottoman military marched the Armenians in this photo to their deaths.

That all but 4 of the Armenian kids pictured were killed.

That, as described in real-time by the US Ambassador there, a “campaign of race extermination” occurred. 6/7
On Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, as we mourn all those who lost their lives, we are reminded that—no matter how long it takes—we can never give up on the pursuit of truth. 7/7
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