Thursday, June 2, after an hour and a half of debate, the lower house of the German Parliament (Bundestag) passed a resolution accusing the Ottoman Empire in the Armenian genocide during the First world war. It is reported by the German newspaper Die Welt.
The draft resolution was adopted in the first reading in the spring of 2015, but further approval was initially delayed indefinitely because of the reluctance to worsen the German-Turkish relations. With the beginning of the migration crisis in the summer / fall of 2015, Turkey was considered by the government of Angela Merkel as a key ally of the European Union that could delay the flow of migrants on its territory.
In March 2016 in Brussels successfully concluded negotiations between Turkey and the EU on the project of returning illegal morgantow and placing them on Turkish territory. In return, Ankara requires increased financial assistance from the EU for refugees from €3 billion to €6 billion and to facilitate the speedy introduction of a visa-free regime for Turkish citizens in the Schengen area and, in the long term, Turkey’s accession to the EU.
The deal with Turkey caused criticism from many States and political forces of Europe. In early may, the European Commission proposed to abolish visa-free regime with Turkey, but MEPs decided to freeze the work on this project. This was followed by a series of harsh statements from Ankara and the leaders of the European countries. Yesterday, Reuters, citing diplomatic sources said that the issue of easing the visa regime is still pending on the initiative of Brussels.
Against this background, the new Prime Minister Binali Yildirim called the vote “a test for the German-Turkish friendship”. As the successor of the Ottoman Empire, Turkey itself recognizes the Armenian genocide.
Resolution, the full text of which in German language led to the publication Spiegel, was proposed for consideration by the ruling coalition of conservatives (CDU/CSU) and socialists (SPD) with the support of the Green party. Together, the three movements take almost 90% of the seats in the Bundestag.