Armenian Genocide Recognition Bill to Be Heard by UK House of Commons

November 8, 2021

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A bill to recognize the Ottoman-era Armenian Genocide is scheduled to be heard by the United Kingdom House of Commons on November 9.

The bill will be presented as a 10-minute rule motion by Member of Parliament Tim Loughton, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Armenia.  

The 10-minute rule allows an MP to make a case for a new bill in a speech lasting up to 10 minutes. Another MP is allowed to make a 10-minute speech opposing the bill.

Tim Loughton will have the opportunity to make a case for official recognition by the U.K. of the 1893-1923 Armenian Genocide.

If MPs vote in favor of the motion, then the bill will progress to its second reading, at which stage it will be more fully debated and examined.

The U.K. Parliamentary website explains, “Ten-Minute Rule Bills are unlikely to become law, but are a way of drawing attention to an issue that requires a change in the law and speaking about it in the Chamber.”

Mr. Loughton has argued that recognizing the Armenian Genocide would be consistent with a motion, passed by the House of Commons in April, that recognized genocide being carried out against the Uyghur people of Xinjiang, China.

In a December 2020 Commons debate, Mr. Loughton also raised as a matter of concern the “unprovoked” attack on ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh undertaken by Azerbaijan with the support of Turkey.

Between 1893 and 1923, some 1.5 million Armenians were killed in the Ottoman Empire in a policy of extermination of Christian minorities. In addition, some 2.25 million Assyrian, Greek and Syriac Christians were killed within Ottoman territories between 1914 and 1923, making a total of 3.75 million Christians killed.

In April, President Biden became the first U.S. chief executive to officially recognize as genocide this massacre of Armenians and other Christians by the Ottoman Empire.

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