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Germany Moves To Soothe Turkish Anger Over Armenian Genocide Vote

Germany took steps on September 2 to soothe Turkish anger over a parliamentary resolution declaring the Ottomans committed genocide in killing more than a million Armenians during World War I.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and other top officials pointed out that the vote, while reflecting the opinion of lawmakers, was "not legally binding."

Turkey admits many Christian Armenians were killed in clashes with Ottoman forces, but denies the killings were orchestrated and constituted a genocide.

It responded to the June Bundestag vote by blocking German lawmakers from visiting 250 German troops at Incirlik Air Base.

Turkey insists Berlin must first distance itself from the Armenia resolution before it will change its mind.

Ilnur Cevik, a media adviser to Turkish President Recept Tayyip Erdogan, told German broadcaster ARD on September 2 that official statements explaining the non-binding nature of the genocide resolution would not suffice to free up visits by members of Germany's parliament.

Some German lawmakers, including members of the ruling right-center coalition, have said they would press for withdrawal of German troops from the base unless they are allowed to visit.

Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, and AFP

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