Armenians commemorate what they view as the genocide of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire (file photo) (ITAR-TASS)
June 1, 2006 -- Turkish writer Orhan Pamuk made a plea today for freedom of expression in Turkey, particularly in relation to the mass killings of Armenians carried out under the Ottoman Empire.
The acclaimed Turkish writer was in Moscow to promote the Russian translation of his book, "Istanbul: Memories And The City."
Last year, prosecutors charged Pamuk with "public denigration of the Turkish identity" for remarks on the massacres of Armenians made in an interview with a Swiss newspaper.
Armenians say up to 1.5 million of their kinsmen died in orchestrated killings during World War I, and describe the events as genocide. Turkey argues that 300,000 Armenians and thousands of Turks were killed in civil strife when the Armenians rose up against their Ottoman rulers.
CALL IT GENOCIDE? Questions surrounding the mass killings of Armenians at the beginning of the last century continue to dominate relations between Armenia and Turkey. In April,
Ankara proposed conducting a joint Armenian-Turkish investigation into the mass killings and deportations of Armenians during World War I.
Turkish leaders suggested that the two countries set up a joint commission of historians to determine whether the massacres carried out between 1915 and 1917 constituted genocide. Armenia, however, insisted it would continue to seek international recognition and condemnation of what it says was a deliberate attempt at exterminating an entire people....(more)
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