German MP explains why she voted ‘no’ to ‘Armenian genocide bill’
BERLINThe only German lawmaker who voted “no” to a resolution recognizing the World War I-era killings of Ottoman Armenians as “genocide” has said it is not the duty of the Bundestag to vote on historical events that took place in other countries.
Bettina Kudla, a MP from German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), posted a statement on her website after the vote on June 2.
“It’s not the duty of the Federal Parliament to evaluate historical events that took place in other countries. In the resolution presented to parliament, there was also no assessment from historians showing that this was genocide,” read the statement.
“It’s not possible to see the political and financial outcomes of this resolution already,” she added.
As the only no-voter among the 631 lawmakers in the Bundestag, Kudla said the vote could seriously harm relations between Germany and Turkey.
“This could also harm the migrant deal signed between Turkey and the European Union. That would make the solution of the both the refugee and migrant issues more difficult. The collapse of the deal between Turkey and the EU would lead to very serious humanitarian consequences and a major financial burden for Germany,” he added.
Also opposing accusations against Germany over the incident, Kudla said the German Empire should not be considered a “partner in crime” for the 1915 killings.
“It’s not accurate to arrive at the conclusion that the German Empire was a partner in crime in the Armenian deportations. The resolution [voted on at the Bundestag] does not state where this responsibility stems from,” she added.
Yerevan has long sought international recognition of the mass killings as genocide, but Ankara rejects the use of the term to describe the World War I-era killings and argues that it was a collective tragedy in which equal numbers of Turks and Armenians died.