Ottawa, ON – The Hon. Pierre Poilievre, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and the Official Opposition, released the following statement on Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day: 

“During World War I, the Ottoman Empire carried out a genocide against Armenians. Beginning in April 1915, a campaign of mass execution and deportation ended the lives of millions. 

“For years afterwards, peaceful villages were ripped apart. Ottoman soldiers massacred entire families in an attempt to destroy the Armenian people. Others were deported to desert lands and forced on death marches, where they were tormented and abused before they died of exposure. This genocide has been repeatedly denied. Its perpetrators have never been held accountable. 

“Today, the wounds of the Armenian Genocide have been reopened. People are experiencing pain not felt since the genocide of 1915. Over 100,000 Armenians have been displaced or killed in Nagorno-Karabakh, their ancestral land. Last year, I called on Azerbaijan to stop its violation of international law by blockading the only road into the region and to end its blockade of the Lachin corridor in order for humanitarian aid to reach Nagorno-Karabakh. It is deeply regrettable that these calls were ignored. Since then, this crisis has escalated with brutal military force. Civilians, children, women and the elderly have been bombed.  

“The international community must not stick their heads in the sand. These atrocities must not be ignored. 

“Despite this pain, both in the early 20th century and today, the Armenian people have endured. In the face of hatred, Armenian communities continue to preserve their culture and way of life. 

“We mourn for the millions of men, women and children who were savagely murdered. We demand justice for the Armenian people. We call for an end to the conflict that continues to threaten peace and security in the region. And we call for every country to recognize the crimes of 1915 for what they are: the Medz Yeghern, the Armenian Genocide.