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Remove the plaque erected in memory of Kemal Ataturk

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The Armenian Youth Federation of Australia expresses its outrage at the recent unveiling of a monument at Hyde Park on the 19th of February 2015 in honour of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Kemal Ataturk was responsible for the mass-murder and forced death marches of ethnic minorities living in Turkey as well as those Turkish citizens who opposed his dictatorship during the early 20th century.


Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and his supporters known as ‘Kemalists’ carried out a wave of barbaric violence against minorities living in Turkey. Reports of the atrocities featured prominently in Australian Media Sources:


The Southern Cross Newspaper (Adelaide) reports on Friday 1 September 1922 p.20 of a “TALE OF BUTCHERY and the open threats of the Kemalists to wipe out Christians, Greeks and Armenians” The paper also reports of a call by the British Government to the West to “investigate the outrages committed by Mustapha Kemal Pasha (Ataturk).”


On the 4th of July 1922, the Daily Telegraph of Launceston published an article on page 3 titled “ANATOLIAN ATROCITIES – THE KEMALIST PROGRAMME – EXTIRPATION OF CHRISTIANS” which tells of the ‘blood-curdling account of the Turkish atrocities’ and the ‘systematic character of these unspeakable atrocities’.


The gravest consequence of the Kemalist movement was that its unpunished crimes served as a foundation for future race related atrocities within the world. Adolf Hitler, who was responsible for the deaths of 6 million Jews revealed in the Turkish Daily Milliyet in 1933 that “Ataturk was a teacher; Mussolini was his first and I his second student”. This shows the extent as to how barbaric and systemic his regime was; as he served as motivation to one of the greatest acts of inhumanity the world has ever seen.


On April 17th 1997, the New South Wales Government passed a resolution acknowledging the crimes against the Armenian, Greek and Assyrian minorities that occurred between 1915-1923 as genocide. The fact a monument to a genocide perpetrator has been erected next to the holy shrine of a war memorial dedicated to the heroism of our ANZAC soldiers is extremely unfitting and unacceptable.


We take deep offence to and call for the removal of this insulting glorification of a genocide perpetrator in what is an unfitting gesture to the memory and brave gallantry of our ANZAC heroes.


AYF Australia Executive



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