Today, U.S. Reps. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and George Radanovich (R-CA), lead sponsors of the Armenian Genocide Resolution; Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Joe Knollenberg (R-MI), co-chairmen of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues; and Brad Sherman (D-CA) and Ed Royce (R-CA), senior members of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs highlighted the importance of recognizing the murder of a million and a half Armenians between 1915-1923 as genocide.
The six lawmakers, all Members of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues, issued the following statement today:
"Today, Congress rightly honored the Dalai Lama with the Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in the Capitol, despite the ardent objections of the Chinese government.
"In this demonstration of moral virtue, Congress today stood up for what is right and would not be intimidated by threats from another nation. In awarding the Dalai Lama the highest civilian honor Congress can bestow, Congress showed its commitment to promoting peace around the world. We will not let another country impede our efforts to speak out against inhumanity.
"As we take this principled moral stand in defiance of the Chinese government, we must similarly be willing to speak out on the Armenian Genocide. If we as a nation are to be a moral leader around the world we must have the courage to recognize genocide whenever and wherever it occurs."
The Armenian Genocide has been recognized by more than 20 nations including Canada, Italy, Sweden, France, Argentina and Russia. This resolution is consistent with the record of the U.S. House of Representatives in speaking out against genocides - past and present. The House has passed resolutions on the Holocaust and the genocides in Cambodia, Darfur, Ukraine and Bosnia.