May 13, 2015
On Friday, April 24, the Canadian Parliament unanimously adopted Motion 587, officially declaring April 24 Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day in Canada. The adoption of the motion is the result of efforts by AGBU Canada and the Armenian Genocide Centennial Committee of Canada.
During the session, Conservative Member of Parliament Brad Butt spoke about the importance of the motion. “Mr. Speaker, as time passes, it becomes even more imperative for moral societies such as ours to remain firm in our commitment to memory. Without active efforts such as those proposed by Motion 587, there is always the risk that the memory of historical genocides could be lost, minimized or even denied. Indeed, in recent years, we have seen an unfortunate rise around the world in the heinous practice of Holocaust denial and in the denial of other genocides. The only appropriate response is to strongly reaffirm our collective commitment as a society to remember and commemorate genocide, to educate future generations about the poisonous effects of hate and intolerance and to uphold the importance of preventing such atrocities from ever reoccurring,” said Butt.
AGBU Canada Executive Board member Hagop Arslanian—one of the architects of the presentation and the successful adoption of the motion—commented on the historic development. “The adoption of Motion 587, which also declares the month of April as Genocide Remembrance, Condemnation and Prevention Month, has special significance not only in Canadian political life but in the community of nations. Canada has once again reaffirmed its role in the international community as a staunch defender of human rights. This decision in defense of justice is a serious response to Turkey and its denialist policies,” said Arslanian.