Knesset members from all sides of the political spectrum called for the government to officially recognize the Armenian genocide, marking the first time the issue was discussed in an open Knesset meeting.
The Knesset Education Committee meeting was initiated after MK Arye Eldad (National Union) proposed a bill to mark the Armenian genocide annually, which was then turned into a motion for the agenda after Eldad realized the coalition would not allow the legislation to pass. The meeting also addressed a similar motion to the agenda by MK Zehava Gal-On (Meretz), making Armenian genocide one of the few topics agreed upon by the Knesset factions farthest to the political left and right.
The discussion took place a week after France’s lower house of parliament moved to criminalize Armenian-genocide denial, leading to a diplomatic crisis between Paris and Ankara.
Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said that those who fight Holocaust denial must may not ignore the tragedies of other nations, and it is a moral imperative that Israel remember the Armenian genocide.