The Armenian Genocide Monument to be unveiled at the Temple of Peace, Cardiff on the 3rd november will also be a monument of friendship between the Welsh and the Armenian nations. Many parallels and similarities exist between our two nations at the opposite extremities of Europe.
Strange indeed are the similarities in patterns on our ancient Celtic Crosses and the Armenian Khatchkars (stone crosses) A Celtic regioun did indeed exist in the vicinity of Armenia and our ancient traditions claim our origins as Brythonic Celts go back to the Caspian sea/Cauicasus region.
Many language similarities exist eg the words for water (dwr/tchour) ancient (hen/hin), sister (chwaer/kouir) stone (carreg/kar). It is uncanny that as the letters c, p, and t, mutate in Welsh to g, b, and d, theese letters are interchanged in Armenian.
The bonds of frienship in the modern era go back to 1896. Following the Massacres under Sultan Abdul Hamid, when 300,000 Armenians were murdered,raped and tortured, an outpouring of protest took place in Wales. Protest Meetings urging the governmennt to act were frequent and money was raised to alleviate Armenian suffering. A Wales Armenia Society existed for this pur[pose from 1896. Many Welsh poems were written describing the suffering of the Armenians and there were frequent reports iof the massacres in the Welsh newspapers such as "Y Faner" The monument will be to remember the massacres of 1894-96 , and also the Adana Massacre of 1909 and many other smaller scale Massacres, as well as the Genocide of 1915-1923. Almost every Armenian familly in Wales and the UK have carried with them accounts given to them by their grand-parents of persecution and mass murder.
Certainnly we welcome any Turkish initiative to discuss more fully the events of 1894-1923.Are they willing to listen to these accounts of Armenian fammillky history as well as the deliberations of the International Association of Genocide Scholars who have come out unequivocally to state that the Armenian s suffered Genocide. Do the Turks clam that all impartal Western Scholars are to be dismissed, and only Turkish scholars should be given a hearing ?. It has been official Turkish government policy to deny the genocide since the twenties.
How impartial then can Turkish histoprians who follow the government line claim to be ? They have grown up on the myth that there was no genocide, and that there was no Armenia. They have even deleted Armenia from the maps of Anatolia and destroyed the remains of the 2,000 Armenian Churches and monasteries that adorned this ancient land .
We welcome a debate on the 1894-1923 period with all Turks of good faith, but that debate must include the validity of Turkey’s present borders. After all it was Aneurin Williams, Founder of The League of Nations Association which evolved into the U.N.Association who said in 1923 (referring to the Lausanne Treaty) that "It is intolerable to recognise a majority made by massacre"
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