Armenian leader watches premier of Turkish-German Akın's 'The Cut' amid debates
Fatih Akın directed 'The Cut,' which focuses on 1915 killings and aftermanth. AFP photoArmenian President Serzh Sargsyan attended Jan. 30 the Moscow premier of “The Cut,” the latest movie from Turkish-German filmmaker Fatih Akın which centers on an Armenian father who travels from the 1915 Ottoman Empire to the U.S. in search of his daughters.
Members of an Armenian state commission, which works on the anniversary of 1915 events, and other guests accompanied Sargsyan at the Moscow theater, Armenian Press news agency reported Jan. 30.
Along with Akın, Armenian-American screenwriter Mardik Martin, who has also worked with legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese, penned the screenplay of the drama.
The film, which competed for the coveted Golden Lion award at the 71st Venice Film Festival and received a special mention award there, had an estimated budget of 16 million euros, according to the website imdb.com.
The move came amid fresh steps and exchanges of words between the leaders of Turkey and Armenia, as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said during a live interview on public broadcaster TRT Haber that accusing Turkey of committing “genocide” is a form of execution without trial. However, Ankara is “ready to pay for any misdeed” if an “impartial board of historians” concludes that it was at fault for the events of 1915, he said.
“We are not obliged to accept that the so-called Armenian genocide was ‘made-to-order,’” Erdoğan said.
He mentioned that during his period as prime minister, he had sent a letter in 2005 to former Armenian President Robert Kocharian, proposing that historians investigate the 1915 killings of Anatolian Armenians during the Ottoman era.
Erdoğan’s recent invitation to ceremonies marking the centenary of the Battle of Gallipoli in Çanakkale in late April, which coincides with the remembrance day for the victims of the 1915 mass killings, was “cynical and shortsighted,” Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said a day before the Russia premier of the movie.
“They say any measures are suitable in politics, but I believe Ankara offered a bad service to itself in this matter,” Sargsyan said on Jan. 29, according to ArmeniaNow.com.
Erdoğan sent out invitations to the leaders of 102 countries, including Armenian President Sargsyan and U.S. President Barack Obama, for the Gallipoli event.
Sargsyan rebuffed the invitation in letter addressed to Erdoğan, recalling an invitation extended to the Turkish president to attend ceremonies to mark the 100th anniversary of the 1915 deportation and killing of Ottoman Armenians, which is considered “genocide” by Armenians.