Swiss Armenians seek legal proceedings against Turkish minister

Swiss Armenians seek legal proceedings against Turkish minister

PanARMENIAN.Net - Armenian community demands that the Swiss authorities do file a criminal case against Turkey’s EU Affairs Minister Egemen Bagis who publicly denied the Armenian Genocide in the country.

Secretary General of the Switzerland-Armenia parliamentary friendship group Sarkis Shahinian addressed Switzerland’s Court of Appeal filing a complaint against the General Prosecutor’s office which refused to launch a criminal case against Bagis because of his diplomatic immunity, Nouvelles d'Armenie reports.

Earlier, investigation against Bagis was initiated by Article 261 of the Swiss Criminal Code referring to racist statements. The proceedings were launched following the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2012 where the Turkish official claimed “there was no Armenian Genocide”. Later, however, the case was suspended.

“After consulting with the Swiss foreign ministry, the prosecutor has concluded that criminal charges against Egemen Bagis cannot be pursued because, as a Turkish EU Minister, he enjoyed immunity during his entire stay in Switzerland,” the Swiss prosecutor said in April 2 statement.

For his part, Andreas Dreisiebner, Co-Chairman of the Switzerland - Armenia Association voiced indignation over reserved stance of the Swiss authorities.

“The Turkish minister openly and deliberately violated Swiss legislation by voicing racist statements. Meanwhile, we prefer economic relations to the human rights, and this is disgraceful,” he said doubting the relevance of diplomatic immunity, the economic forum in Davos being a private event.

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