Asbarez – Both houses of the California State Legislature on Monday passed a resolutions recognizing the Armenian Genocide and urging Washington, which continues to deny the systematic murder of 1.5 million Armenians in 1915, to follow suit. The legislature also held a State Capitol observance for the 103rd anniversary.
State Senator Anthony Portantino authored the Senate Resolution 107 along with Senate President Pro Tempore Toni Atkins, Senate Pro Tempore Emeritus Kevin de-Leon, Senator Wilk, and Senator Newman. SR 107 continues the State Senate’s strong condemnation of Genocide denial and formally asks the Turkish Government to return seized private and church property to its rightful owners.
In his floor speech, Senator Portantino admonished Turkey to end its century of denial and to end threats to Artsakh that continue today.
“I am very proud to represent the largest Armenian community outside of Armenia and I am honored to fight for the proper and accurate historical accounts of the Armenian Genocide. The appropriate embrace of history will help Armenians around the world heal in the face of an organized denialist campaign. Having traveled to Yerevan and Artsakh and learning about so many of the tragic stories descendants of survivors tell continues to tug at my heart and inspires me to do all I can to help in this effort,” added Senator Portantino.
“I am honored to join with the Armenian Caucus to coauthor a resolution recognizing and commemorating the Armenian Genocide. While Washington continues to accept Turkey’s’ century of denial and Azeri aggression toward Artsakh I am proud of California’s efforts to lead by example and annually recognize the Armenian Genocide and expose and condemn civil rights abuses perpetrated against the Armenian people,” added Portantino.
“We commemorate the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide and the 1.5 million lives lost. What happened 103 years ago can never be undone, but through education we take steps to ensure that history never repeats itself,” said Senator Scott Wilk. “The strength of the survivors and their descendants is evidenced by the leaders, innovators and thinkers of Armenian descent who have enriched our communities and thrived both here in America and throughout the world.”
“Today, we remember and honor the 1.5 million souls lost during the Armenian Genocide and celebrate the strength and perseverance of our community,” stated Assembly member Adrin Nazarian. “Our community is flourishing in California yet we must remain vigilant against injustice, home and abroad.”
“We reflect today upon one of the darkest chapters in our shared history,” said Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Glendale). “In the Capitol and across California, we pause to honor the 1.5 million lost, we celebrate the resiliency of the Armenian people, and we remind our leaders that until there is worldwide recognition of the genocide, justice is denied.”