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15 November 2021
On 9th November 2021, Tim Loughton MP the Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentarian Group for Armenia, presented a bill to the House of Commons pertaining to the United Kingdom’s formal recognition of the Armenian Genocide. The bill calls upon the UK government not only to recognise the genocide, but to ensure that it is commemorated annually and included in the UK’s educational curriculum.The Bill, co-sponsored by 11 MPs, was supported by key figures across all five main political parties, including Sir Iain Duncan Smith, John Spellar, Chris Law, Christine Jardine, James Gray, Jim Shannon, Andrew Rosindell, Dr Rupa Huq, Wera Hobhouse, Alan Brown and Chris Stephens. According to Mr. Loughton, “The Armenian Genocide remains one of the longest standing injustices in European history. The perpetrators remain in denial and too many bystanders have allowed the facts to be swept under the carpet and to turn the other way. With the recent international outrage at genocidal practices going on in the 21st century, not least through the appalling human rights abuses inflicted on the Uyghurs by the Chinese regime, it is imperative that we ensure that the world properly acknowledges genocides of the past to strengthen everyone’s resolve to call them out and prevent them being repeated in the future.” Mr. Loughton reiterated the importance of recognition in his reading yesterday, citing the war instigated by Azerbaijan last year against the people of Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Artsakh. Azerbaijan indiscriminately attacked all areas of the region and systemically committed heinous war crimes against the ethnic Armenian population forcing almost 60% of them to flee to Armenia. Despite the ceasefire signed one year ago today, Azerbaijan is still holding captive over 120 POWs and civilians under inhumane conditions. The bill was passed unopposed and is scheduled for second reading on 18th March, 2022 depending on Parliamentary agenda.