EUROPE > French President did not know about inclusion of 'genocide' in school books


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 French President, Francois Hollande gives the opening speech of the 20th annual ambassador's conference on August 27, 2012 at the Elysee Presidential Palace in Paris. . AFP Photo

French President, Francois Hollande gives the opening speech of the 20th annual ambassador's conference on August 27, 2012 at the Elysee Presidential Palace in Paris. . AFP Photo

A recent decision to include the alleged Armenian genocide in French history textbooks was made out of the knowledge of French President François Hollande, daily Hürriyet reported today.  

The president did not give any instruction for the new regulation, Hollande reportedly told Hürriyet during the 20th Annual Ambassador's Conference in Paris.  

"I do not know about this effort. It's absolutely out of my knowledge," Hollande said. "Changes in the books are prepared by commissions ... The desicion does not come from me, but I will ask and learn where it comes from. Then I will inform you."  

The study had been conducted by the French Education Ministry for many years, but diplomacy has never been involved in the issue, French Ambassador to Turkey Laurent Bili told Hürriyet, also noting that it did not come as a surprise.


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Rimon Tree

8/29/2012 8:25:06 PM

@ Roger Your argument is doomed to fail! French never denied her crimes she committed in Africa and did not belittle the numbers either. No sense in opening accounts instead of giving arguments, because France's account is already settled, but Turkey's is not.

greg sarkisian

8/29/2012 7:21:02 PM

Politicization of history begins when media outlets make it appear that when the president of a country is not apprised about content updates in school textbooks, and that content makes Turkey look bad, it must be part some anti-turk conspiracy. Starts with the media, then racist Turk politicians take it from there, and blame the "other side" as the apostates who must be reigned in. With every diatribe you post against ottoman armenians, you betray the national motive that led to genocide.


8/29/2012 5:59:30 PM

Falshoods have been propagated through text books before. Nazis were really good at it. Let us worry about our own issues.

Roger Harding

8/29/2012 4:50:59 PM

Turkey, it is time to teach Turkish kids about the horrendous French crimes in Africa. Specially the what happened in Algeria. Genocide? French must also explain to the world why they test their Nukes in the small Pacific island colonies and not in mainland France.

Red Tail

8/29/2012 3:06:30 PM

And Dogan. Who do you make Turkey and Turks most popular? A) A person who is aggressive, never acknogleges anything wrong, makes statements such as "Israel should be erased" etc. or B) A person who tries to see the problem from both parties point of view. Who do not write hate comments against everythying foreign or non-Muslim. I would like to believe that I simply promote Turkey and Turks in a much better way. To just promote hate will never give your respect and will never give us any friends.

dogan kemal ileri

8/29/2012 1:26:01 PM

Entry of the alleged genocide of Armenians by Ottoman Turks in 1915 in French school books is a very minor affair BUT it is such a highly charged contentious issue for both Turks and Armenians that it can lead to major hardening of arteries between the French and Turks and it now assumes an important matter which if not handled properly can lead to wholesale erosion of relations.@Red Tail you are very sensitive to all and sundry except the Turkish position in all your correspondence.R U a Turk?

Red Tail

8/29/2012 12:20:58 PM

Tamer. Why is not president Gul writing all the school books in Turkey? The answer is because from his perspective writng school books is a minor detail of everything that is gong on in Turkey and consider all his other tasks and responcibilities. I do not think that Presidents in any country is involved in deciding the detailed content of school books. But please prove me wrong.

Red Tail

8/29/2012 12:16:43 PM

Tamer You perfectly understand what I mean. If you are writing text books on history, 99,99999% of everything that has happened in history will not appear in that book. Many of such events can be extremely tragic, but they can still not appear because it is a school book for kids and they can not read everything about everything. And from that perspective I maintain that the content of a page or two in a school book for kids is a minor detail for a president. Not that the event as such is minor.

Tamer Aslantas

8/29/2012 11:55:10 AM

Minor details? Whole relationships are at stake and you find this minor? We're talking about genocide and to me that's BIG!

Red Tail

8/29/2012 10:41:51 AM

Seems quite reasonable. The president probably has more important issues on his mind than regulating the minor details when it comes to content of school books. Or do we expect him to read and comment on all books used in the French education system? What about the content on page 58 in the maths book for the 4 grade students? Is he sure that that example if the best possible?
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