Paylan suspended from parliament after comments about Genocide

By Asbarez | Saturday, 14 January 2017

Garo Paylan

Garo Paylan

ANKARA—Garo Paylan, an Armenian member of the Turkish parliament representing the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) on Saturday was suspended for three parliamentary sessions after speaking about the Armenian Genocide during the legislature debate of a new Turkish constitution.

In his speech, which angered the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) members, Paylan said the from 1913 to 1923 the Armenians, Assyrians, Greeks and Jews registered in the country were “exiled from these lands or subjected to tortures as a result of large massacres and genocide.”

“At one time we comprised 40% of the population,” Paylan said despite an uproar by AKP members. “Today we are one among 1000. Something happened to us, and I call it genocide whatever you call it. The Armenian people know very well what happened to them. I know very well what happened to my father, grandfather. Let’s face [history] together,” he added.

According to Anadolu news agency, AKP member Metin Külünk demanded that Paylan “correct the word genocide.” The legislative session ended, with parliament members condemning Paylan’s statements.