Was An Act Of Genocide Committed Against The Armenia People During 1915 1916?

1039 words - 5 pages

Following the decline of the Ottoman Empire, the Turkish nationalist reform party known as the ‘Young Turks’ carried out the deportation and massacres of the Armenians living in Turkey between 1915-1916,The UN as defines genocide as “acts carried out intended to destroy, in whole or part, a national ethnic, racial or religious group” ("Q&A: Armenian Genocide Dispute."). Though it is agreed that the killings took place, the number of deceased and why the acts were carried out is greatly disputed between governments and historians, leading to disagreements on whether or not the atrocities were genocide. The government of Turkey, the successor state to the Ottoman Empire, is opposed to ...view middle of the document...

The Ottomans were predominantly Muslim, however legalized religious minorities, like the Armenians, to maintain relative sovereignty. The Armenians were however also subjected to “unequal and unjust” treatment. Christians, for example, were exploited to higher taxes than Muslims and they had diminutive civil rights (History.com Staff). QUIZ SOURCE this source regurgitates the mistreatment of the Armenians in Turkey.

The Turkish government acknowledges that amid the massacres many Armenians died. Nevertheless, it counters that Muslim Turks died too, claims that the number of Armenian victims has been exaggerated, and that both groups as a result of inter-ethnic violence and the wider conflict of World War I committed massacres. The Turkish government also claims that Armenians were ‘removed’, ‘relocated’ and ‘immigrated’, rather than ‘deported’, from the eastern ‘war zone’. This calls into question the distinction between the literal meanings of these specific terminologies
Deportation, as defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, is “the removal from a country of an alien whose presence is unlawful or prejudicial”, and Turkey claims that all regions that the Armenians were ‘relocated’ to were within the Ottoman Empire's borders. Whereas relocation is defined as “establish or lay out in a new place”, accordingly more applicable. Although there is no vast distinction between the two words, the difference determines the accuracy of the application of the term genocide. While Turkey persists on concentrating on the minuscule differences between words, their meanings and definitions, and numbers, the Armenians merely appeal for the acceptance and reasonability taken for the atrocious actions of their predecessors.

For the crime of genocide to have taken place there must be the “intent to destroy, in whole or in part”, therefore a major argument in classifying the massacres as genocide lies in distinguishing whether the killings were premeditated /systematic or not. Verifying intent decades after the atrocities took place to prove the intent component of genocide, though there is abundant evidence of the crimes taking place, is difficult. This could be due to there having never been intent, that the decision to commit genocide was not well documented at...

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