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France's Macron Declares April 24 Commemoration Day Of Armenian Genocide

French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife, Brigitte Macron, during a visit at Yerevan's Tsitsernakaberd Armenian Genocide Memorial on October 11.

French President Emmanuel Macron has declared April 24 as a "national day of commemoration of the Armenian genocide."

Macron made the announcement on February 5 at a dinner for the Armenian community in France, honoring a campaign promise from his 2017 election campaign.

France was among the first nations to denounce "the murderous hunt of the Armenian people in the Ottoman Empire," he said at the annual dinner organized by the Coordinating Council of Armenian Organizations of France (CCAF).

France officially recognized the World War I-era mass slaughter and deportation of up to 1.5 million Armenians by Ottoman Turks as genocide in 2001. At least 22 other countries, including Germany, have taken a similar step.

Armenia says the mass killing is one of the first examples of genocide in modern history, predating the Holocaust carried out by Nazi Germany against more than 6 million Jews during World War II.

Turkey objects, saying that Armenians died in much smaller numbers and because of civil strife rather than a planned, systemic effort by the Ottoman government against the Christian minority.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters