|UN on Armenian Claims
The Associated Press, WASHINGTON (AP) - A House resolution that recognizes as genocide the killings of Armenians in Turkey between 1915 and 1923 misstated the United Nations' position on the matter, according to a U.N. spokesman.
The resolution said that in 1986 the U.N. Commission on Human Rights adopted a report labeling the killings a genocide. But U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq said the commission voted only to take notice of the report, not to approve it or endorse its findings.
"There is no indication that the U.N. has taken an official position on this,'' Haq said.
Armenians say 1.5 million of their people were slaughtered as part of the Ottoman Empire's campaign to force them out of eastern Turkey between 1915 and 1923. The Turkish government says the death count is inflated and the people were killed as the Ottoman Empire tried to quell civil unrest. The Ottoman Empire became Turkey in 1923. The House resolution, which is nonbinding, passed the International Relations Committee on Tuesday despite warnings it could seriously damage U.S. relations with Turkey, a key military ally.
A spokeswoman for California GOP Rep. George Radanovich, the resolution's main sponsor, said the language was being looked at and would be fixed if needed. [AP-NY-10-05-00 1929EDT]