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YEREVAN, April 24 /TASS/. Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan thanked his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin for attending commemorative events devoted to the 100th anniversary of genocide of Armenian population in the Ottoman Empire in 1915.
"You found the words, which touched the heart of every Armenian," Sargsyan said. "According to my own assessment and the assessment of our citizens, those words were said by the leader of an allied state and a fraternal country," Sargsyan stressed.
"A hundred years ago, the Russian state together with the governments of France and Britain classified the actions of the government of the Ottoman Empire against the Armenian population as a crime against humanity, which should be punished. This fact indicates succession in Russian politics," the Armenian president said.
In his speech at the Remembrance ceremony, Putin said that Russia’s stance on genocide remained unchanged: it cannot be justified. "Russia’s stance was and remains consistent: we have always thought that mass killings of people cannot be justified," Putin stressed.
Russia has initiated a number of international legal acts condemning genocide, including the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG). "The world community must do everything to prevent the recurrence of the tragic events of the past so that all people could live in peace and accord without knowing horrors to which the incitement of religious animosity and aggressive nationalism and xenophobia can lead," Putin stressed.
He said that Russia was genuinely sympathizing with the Armenian people who lived through one of the most terrible tragedies in human history. "The events of 1915 shook the whole world. Russia perceived them as its own grief. Hundreds of thousands of helpless and homeless Armenians found shelter in the territory of Russia and were saved," Putin stressed noting that it was Russian diplomats who made the whole world condemn the violence against the Armenian population.