EU Minister to attend April 24 ceremony at Armenian Patriarchate
AA PhotoEU Minister Volkan Bozkır will represent the Turkish government at a religious ceremony to be held at the Armenian Patriarchate on April 24 to honor the memory of Anatolian Armenians killed during World War I. The ceremony will be the first for the Armenian Patriarchate in Istanbul.
“This will be a service for the Ottoman Armenians and all the people who lost their lives in that period,” Deputy Armenian Patriarch Archbishop Aram Ateşyan said on April 21. “Our pain is common.”
The Armenian Patriarchate in Turkey welcomed a message of condolences by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu over the killings of Armenians at the hands of Ottomans in 1915, just days before the ceremonies on April 24.
“This is a pointed message, I am glad,” Ateşyan said, recalling that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, then prime minister, had delivered a similar message last year.
“[Protecting] the memory of the Ottoman Armenians and Armenian cultural heritage is a humane and historic duty of Turkey. With this understanding, the Ottoman Armenians will be commemorated in Turkey just like in the entire world through a religious ceremony to be held on April 24 by the Armenian Patriarchate,” Davutoğlu said in a written statement on April 20.