October 30, 2017 - 16:23 AMT
U.S., UK should regard Armenian Genocide as a crime: Robertson

The Armenian Genocide should not be regarded as only a tragedy, but as a crime, human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson said at a book launch in Sidney last week.

The presentation of "Genocide Perspectives V: A Global Crime, Australian Voices" was headlined by Robertson and senior crown prosecutor for NSW Mark Tedeschi.

The latest volume in this important series is dedicated to the lifelong contribution to genocide research by Australia’s Professor Colin Tatz, who penned a chapter about genocide education and received a standing ovation on the night, the Jewish News reports.

Co-edited by researchers Nikki Marczak and Kirril Shields from the Australian Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, it features a collection of essays by Australian scholars that not only explore international perspectives and pressing questions related to genocide, but also Australia’s own history of genocide against its Indigenous peoples – which Robertson described as “the mote in our own eye”.

At the event, Robertson spoke about the growing problem in the International Criminal Court of judges defining too specifically what constitutes intent to commit genocide, “making it more difficult to prosecute”.

He also touched on the “massive problem of genocide denial by governments” – particularly Turkey regarding the Armenian Genocide, and said countries including the USA, UK and Australia should not continue to refer to that Genocide only as a tragedy, but as a crime.