Armenian Genocide Monument in Brussels Vandalised; Grey Wolves Suspected

By Asbarez | Tuesday, 26 April 2022

A monument dedicated to the Armenian Genocide in Brussels was desecrated overnight, with graffiti sprayed on its base on the main structure, which is a traditional cross-stone—Khatchkar.

The Brussels-based Committee for the Defence of the Armenian Cause (CDCA-Belgique) and European Federation for Justice and Democracy (EAFJD) were alerted about the desecration. The base of the Katchkar was spray-painted with three red crescents, while the phrase “fuck Paylan” was spayed on the main structure.

The CDCA-Belgique and the EAFJD said in a statement that the symbols and logos sprayed on the cross stone suggest that his an act committed by the Turkish Neo-Fascist Grey Wolves organization.

Garo Paylan, an Armenian member of the Turkish parliament representing the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), on Saturday introduced a motion calling for Turkey’s official recognition of the Armenian Genocide. The mere introduction of the motion was rebuffed by members of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) who threatened legal action. On Tuesday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey accused Paylan of treason.

Over the weekend, Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, while on an official visit to Uruguay, brandished the Grey Wolves sign to a group of Armenian protesters in Montevideo, resulting in angry rebukes by Uruguay’s president and foreign minister. Uruguay was the first country to recognise the Armenian Genocide in 1965.

The CDCA-Belgique and EAFJD acknowledged Cavusoglu’s blatant disregard in their joint statement.

“There is every reason to believe that the Grey Wolves may be state-sponsored, and it cannot be ruled out that the perpetrators of the vandalism were inspired by the Turkish foreign minister’s inappropriate behaviour,” said the statement.

“EAFJD and CDCA Belgique firmly and unequivocally condemn this heinous act of vandalism which is a clear reflection of Armenophobia and the consequence of what unpunished fascism looks like,” added the statement.

The groups went on to urge the government of Belgium and European Union leaders to:

  • Strongly and unequivocally condemn this heinous and Armenophobic act of vandalism against the memorial to the victims of the Armenian Genocide in Brussels.
  • Immediately dissolve the Grey Wolves organization, which has a documented history of extremely violent actions, dissemination of violent threats and incitement to hatred against the authorities and Armenians;
  • Open an independent-led investigation on Turkish extremist networks in Belgium and across the EU;
  • Adopt a law criminalising the denial of the Armenian Genocide in Belgium

“Impunity and denial create a breeding ground for new crimes against humanity as was the case in 2020 when Armenian native populations of Nagorno Karabakh / Artsakh suffered a large-scale military aggression by Turkey-backed Azerbaijan and Jihadist groups,” said the groups in their statement.

“As European citizens, we believe that an ultra-nationalist and openly fascist organization such as Grey Wolves has no place in a free and democratic Europe. Therefore, we demand and expect action and justice from our leaders,” the EAFJD and CDCA-Belgique said.