THE PROPOSAL TO OPEN THE ARCHIVES TO THE JOINT RESEARCH OF TURKISH, ARMENIAN AND IMPARTIAL SPECIALISTS, SCHOLARS AND HISTORIANS IS STILL VALID
Commentary No : 2012 / 75
20.11.2012
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In an interview with an Armenian news agency, Director of the Armenian National Archives has informed that they have done a new research within the archives and as a result, they have come up with a book of three volumes entitled “The Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire: the Testimonies of the Survivors” to be published on the occasion of the commemorative events of the 100th anniversary. According to the statements of the Director of National Archives, Armenian voluntary units belonging to the Russian army had conducted research in 1916-1917 in Eastern Anatolia, when the Russian army had occupied, concerning the relocation of the Armenian population in 1915 and had recorded the testimonies of the few Armenians continuing to live in the region. Based on these testimonies which are brought to light now, the findings they reached by travelling from village to village are to prove that genocide had taken place. Archival research is without doubt very important for historical facts. In fact, it is a must to reveal historical events. Therefore, a research to be made in the Armenian national archives is important. On the other hand, it is an indisputable necessity that it should carry credibility as to archival research being a scientific one and that it is not manipulated for political and subjective ends. Armenia does not have a clean record on this point. Until now, Armenia has exerted all its efforts at the political level for the acceptance of their allegations and has pursued to achieve a political fait accompli, bypassing all inquiries of whether they are based on historical facts. Whereas Turkey’s proposal and call are quite clear: Turkish and Armenian archives and other relevant archives which could shed light on the Armenian relocation to be opened to joint research by Turkish, Armenian and other scholars, specialized historians. The clarity which historical events will thus attain will be qualified to be convincing and binding. Otherwise, as in the example of the research undertaken by the Director of the Armenian National Archives and the book to be published as a result, no credible contribution will be made to historical facts and it will be destined to serve as an instrument of political debate.


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