The United States House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the US Congress, has overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan resolution recognising the 1915 genocide of Armenians by the then Ottoman Empire, RFE/RL’s Armenian service has reported.
The landmark resolution was supported by 405 out of the 435 House representatives.
“This was genocide and it is important that we call this crime what it was,” wrote Azatutyun, quoting Democratic congressman Adam Schiff.
Gus Bilirakis, a Republican congressman and co-sponsor of the resolution stressed that “genocides, whenever and wherever they occur, cannot be ignored.”
“By acknowledging this genocide we honor the memory of its victims and vow: never again,” former US vice president Joe Biden said in a statement.
Reacting to the US vote, Armenia’s foreign ministry called the resolution “determined and impressive.”
“This resolution is of profound significance in that it resolves to commemorate the Armenian genocide through official recognition and remembrance, to reject its denial and encourage the education and understanding of the killing of 1.5 million Armenians,” the statement reads, adding that the 1915-1923 events that took place during the Ottoman rule were “a definitive example of genocide of the 20th century.”
The Armenian Assembly of America and the Armenian National Committee of America, which are the two leading Armenian lobby groups in the US, praised the resolution likewise.
In order to become official US policy, the resolution has to be adopted by the US Senate and signed by US president. As of now, there is no senate vote scheduled.