YEREVAN.- On April 24 Armenians living worldwide and many states commemorate the 98th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the first genocide of the 20th century (photo).
On this day in 1915, under the instruction of the Ottoman rulers, massacre and mass deportation of Armenians commenced. The victims of these atrocities exceed 1.5 million.
Commemoration events are held in almost all countries where Armenians live. The key events will be held in Yerevan near the Memorial to Armenian Genocide victims in Tsitsernakaberd. Armenia's authorities, Catholicos of All Armenians, state and public institution representatives, hundreds of thousands citizens and guests will visit Tsitsernakaberd to honor the memory of the victims. Many Diaspora representatives visit Yerevan on this day to participate in the memorial march.
During the First World War, the Turkish authorities accused Armenians of sympathizing with Russia and used it as a pretext to declare the entire Armenian population their enemy.
The 1915 -1923 events are considered by many historians as a state-supported mass murder - genocide. Armenia claims that the total number of dead exceeds 1.5 million people, the half of all Armenians at the beginning of the last century.
The fact of the Armenian Genocide is recognized by many states. It was first recognized in 1965 by Uruguay. In general, the Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey has already been recognized by Russia, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Poland, Lithuania, Slovakia, Switzerland, Sweden, Greece, Cyprus, Lebanon, Canada, Venezuela, Argentina, and 42 U.S. states. Armenian Genocide was recognized by the Vatican, European Parliament and the World Council of Churches.