French top court rules Armenian genocide denial is not a crime

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France’s Constitutional Council ruled on Thursday that parts of an Armenian genocide denial act is an “unnecessary and disproportionate attack against freedom of speech” and rescinded the law, which described the denial of the mass killing of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in 1915 as a “hate crime.”

This ruling causes uncertainty regarding expressions and comments on historical matters. Thereby, this ruling is an unnecessary and disproportionate attack against freedom of speech,” the council said.

Turkey accepts that many Christian Armenians were killed in clashes with Ottoman forces in World War I but rejects claims that up to 1.5 million died, and denies the killings were orchestrated and constituted a genocide.

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