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What’s Behind Armenians’ Long Battle to Secure a U.S. Designation of Genocide?



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April 24 is a day of profound sorrow for ethnic Armenians everywhere, marking the date in 1915 when officials of the Ottoman Empire, the forerunner of present-day Turkey, rounded up and killed hundreds of Armenian community leaders. That began a cascade of catastrophic events that left an estimated 1.5 million Armenians dead in the two years that followed.

Saturday will be solemnly observed in Armenia and by the diaspora around the world as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day. While other countries such as Italy and Germany, have adopted that terminology in recent years, the U.S. has demurred.

But this year, President Joe Biden appears poised to take a step that the U.S. Armenian community and many backers in Congress consider painfully overdue.

The long-simmering issue is driven by a number of domestic and international factors and experts are pondering what an official change in America’s stance could mean.

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