Last Sunday, on 12 April 2015, a Holy Mass was led by Pope Francis at St. Peter’s Basilica to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 1915 events. During the ceremony, Pope Francis declared Saint Gregory of Narek, a tenth-century monk and the author of the “Book of Prayers / Book of Lamentations”, a Doctor of the Universal Church. The President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, Catholicos of All Armenians Karekin II, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia Aram I, Patriarch of Cilicia of Armenian Catholics Nerses Bedros XIX and Catholicosates of the Armenian Apostolic Church and the Patriarchate of the Armenian Catholic Church were also present in the liturgy.
In the liturgy, Pope Francis stated: “This faith also accompanied and sustained your people during the tragic experience one hundred years ago “in what is generally referred to as the first genocide of the twentieth century”.
Pope Francis usage of the term genocide raised cheerful approval of the Armenians and the strong reaction of Turkey. Pope’s controversial statement also initiated some debates in different countries such as Italy and Germany.
A day after the Liturgy in Vatican, On 13 April 2015, Associated Press (AP) reported that the UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric made some comments on this liturgy. The AP quoted Dujarric saying that the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon “isn’t supporting Pope Francis' description of the killings as ‘the first genocide of the 20th century’”.
The AP reported that:
[Dujarric] said the secretary-general firmly believes that the commemoration and continuing cooperation between Armenians and Turks "with a view to establishing the facts about what happened should strengthen our collective determination to prevent similar atrocity crimes from ever happening in the future.
Dujarric said in response to a question that Ban did not envision an international commission to examine the facts, saying: "There've been discussions with the countries concerned, and communities concerned and I think it's important that those discussions continue."
He sidestepped several questions on whether the secretary-general agreed with the pope's(SIC!) characterization, and whether Francis was right to raise the issue.
The AP also reported that the spokesperson of the EU Foreign Affairs Maja Kocijancic said “the EU encourages the countries ‘to consider additional, meaningful steps that would pave the way toward full reconciliation’.”
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s comment constitutes an important correction to Pope Francis’s ill-informed statements during a Holy Mass.
© 2009-2020 Center for Eurasian Studies (AVİM) All Rights Reserved
No comments yet.
APRIL 30, 2015 SYMPOSIUM ON "PROSPECTS OF TURKISH-ARMENIAN RELATIONS", OPENING SPEECH AND CLOSING REMARKS
WOODROW WILSON, ARMENIA, AND THE TACKLING OF A LONG-STANDING HYPOCRISY
YEREVAN’S AZERBAIJANI PAST
THE ASSASINATION OF TALAT PASHA
ARCHITECTS OF DENIAL: THE LATEST CINEMATOGRAPHIC EFFORTS OF THE ARMENIAN LOBBY
CATHOLICOS KAREKIN II-PATRIARCH MANOUGIAN DISPUTE, AND THE 2015 ENCYCLICAL
Mehmet Oğuzhan TULUN 13.01.2015
THE EUROPEAN UNION’S GUIDANCE BY POLITICAL SUBJECTIVE INCENTIVES RATHER THAN COMMON ECONOMIC INTERESTS IS TO BE SEEN IN THE EXAMPLE OF TURKEY’S SEGREGATION
Alev KILIÇ 19.11.2012
“STRATEGIC VISION” AWARD TO AVIM
2016 WARSAW SUMMIT AND THE NAGORNO KARABAKH ISSUE
Osman GÜN 14.07.2016
THE ARMENIAN QUESTION AFTER THE HOLIDAYS IV
Ömer Engin LÜTEM 07.09.2011
Anastas Mikoyan: Confessions of an Armenian Bolshevik
Sovyet Sonrası Ukrayna’da Devlet, Toplum ve Siyaset - Değişen Dinamikler, Dönüşen Kimlikler
Türk-Ermeni Uyuşmazlığı Üzerine Ömer Engin Lütem Konferansları 2019
Türk-Ermeni Uyuşmazlığı Üzerine Ömer Engin Lütem Konferansları 2018
Ermeni Sorunuyla İlgili İngiliz Belgeleri (1912-1923) - British Documents on Armenian Question (1912-1923)
Turkish-Russian Academics: A Historical Study on the Caucasus
Gürcistan'daki Müslüman Topluluklar: Azınlık Hakları, Kimlik, Siyaset
Armenian Diaspora: Diaspora, State and the Imagination of the Republic of Armenia
Ermeni Sorunu Temel Bilgi ve Belgeler (2. Baskı)