Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has described the French Senate vote to criminalise genocide denial of the 1915-16 killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as “racist and discriminatory.”
Erdogan called on the 86 French Senators who voted against the bill to appeal the decision at the country’s highest court. The court has the power to block the bill if it considers it unconstitutional.
The Turkish Prime Minister added that if the law is ratified then Turkey will adopt further sanctions against France.
Ankara has already cancelled all economic, political and military meetings between the two countries, moves which illustrate just how angry Ankara is with Paris.
Turkish media turn on Sarkozy over genocide law
In the Turkish press, caricatures presenting Nicolas Sarkozy as the devil said it all about local reaction to the French genocide law. The headlines screamed of an attack on democracy and warned of a tough response.
It reflected the feelings of some in Istanbul. One man said: “This law is against the freedom of speech. The law dictates from one direction and forbids a reaction from the other direction. For this reason it’s bad”.
A woman said:“Of course it will effect our relations badly. Many people will react to it, which is normal. I think it’s not right to be biased.”