The Turkish protest of a French decision to declare April 24 a day commemorating the Armenian Genocide of 1915 has spread to bilateral military ties, Yeni Şafak reports.
Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar on Thursday, April 11 spoke on the phone with his French counterpart, Florence Parly, to voice his displeasure at the decision, said the National Defense Ministry.
On Wednesday, French President Emmanuel Macron signed an order declaring April 24 a day to commemorate the Armenian Genocide.
Separately, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian also spoke on the phone, said Turkey's Foreign Ministry. No details of the conversation were released.
Earlier on Thursday, Cavusoglu dismissed the declaration as "invalid," adding that "France should look to its own misdeeds in colonial Algeria instead of criticizing others."
Armenians commemorate the mass killings on April 24 because on that date in 1915 a group of Armenian intellectuals was rounded up and assassinated in Constantinople by the Ottoman government. On April 24, Armenians worldwide will be commemorating the 104th anniversary of the Genocide which continued until 1923. Some three dozen countries, hundreds of local government bodies and international organizations have so far recognized the killings of 1.5 million Armenians as Genocide. Turkey denies to this day.