By Clark Mindock
NEW YORK (The Independent) — Donald Trump’s administration has rejected a US Senate resolution recognizing the Armenian Genocide, just a day after Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to recognize the killing of Native Americans in retaliation.
The Senate measure was rejected by the State Department on Tuesday, with a spokesperson for the department indicating that US position on the matter did not change.
“The position of the Administration has not changed,” said spokesperson Morgan Ortagus, in a statement to the Hill on Tuesday, December 17. “Our views are reflected in the President’s definitive statement on the issue from last April.”
The US Senate had passed a resolution unanimously last week to recognize the Armenian genocide as a matter of foreign policy, in a rare showing of bipartisanship on a deeply divisive issue and in spite of the Trump administration’s objections. It marked the first time that the US Congress had formally designated the 1915 killings of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire as a genocide.
“To overlook human suffering is not who we are as a people,” said senator Robert Menendez, a Democrat from New Jersey who co-sponsored the legislation alongside Texas Republican senator Ted Cruz, during an emotional speech moments before the legislation was passed. “It is not what we stand for as a nation. We are better than that, and our foreign policy should always reflect this.”