08 March 2006

531) Washington recalled its Ambassador to Armenia for statements on the Armenian Genocide

Ambassador Plenipotentiary of the US in Armenia John Evans has been recalled to Washington. According to “The California Courier”, Evans already informed about it the Armenian government. The reason of the recall is statements of the Ambassador regarding the Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey in 1915. According to the source, US Senate already approved new Ambassador, current head of American diplomatic mission in Tajikistan Richard Hoagland. . . .

On February 19, during a meeting with representatives of the Armenian community in San-Francisco, John Evans told about “importance of the Armenian Genocide recognition.”

He said that he studied the fact about the Genocide of Armenians, and that he always wanted to “call things with their real names, but the official US policy did not change, because Turkey is an important US partner in military sphere.” He said that “all American officials never denied this fact, and I think that it is unsuitable for American to play on words in such case.” Evans stated that “the Armenian Genocide was the first genocide of 20th Century,” and noted that the world then was not prepared for suitable reaction, but now the problems will be seriously discussed. Earlier, American officials never used the tern “genocide” to the events of early XX century in Armenia.

On February 28, speaking in US Embassy in Armenia, John Evans decided to give a more precise definition to his speech of February 19. He said that official US position is still the same, and in his previous statement he declared only his personal opinion. He expressed regret that his statement caused misunderstanding.

It should be noted that Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Matthew Bryza is currently visiting Yerevan.



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