Amal Clooney Comments on European Court of Human Rights’ Armenian Genocide Decision 16.10.2015

Geoffrey Robertson QC and Amal Clooney of Doughty Street Chambers represented the Republic of Armenia intervening as a third party in the case Perincek v Switzerland before the European Court of Human Rights. In an interview with the Public TV of Armenia, Amal Clooney comments on the importance and scope of the Grand Chamber’s ruling in that case and explains why this constitutes a victory for Armenia.

“We are very happy for the judgment. This is a victory for Armenia. Armenia was neither a plaintiff, nor a defendant in this case. Armenia was a third party that intervened in the case and did so for one reason – because the low court judgment had in three paragraphs cast doubt on the reality of the Armenian Genocide. It cast doubt on whether the massacres of 1915 constituted genocide, and used language insulting the Armenian community,” Amal Clooney said, adding that they went to the court to ensure that that Grand Chamber not repeat it.

“Those were the arguments and we won. The Court said that the findings of the lower court were inappropriate. Ten of the judges said they should never have discussed the point at all, as it was out of the Court’s jurisdiction. Another seven judges said that the ‘Armenian Genocide is a clearly established historical fact.’ That’s why the judgment is a victory for Armenia,” she added.

“What the European Court actually decided is that “Perincek’s speeches should not be criminalized, because they didn’t rise to the level of speech, inciting racial hatred and violence in the county they were made, which is Switzerland. This is an encouraging decision from the perspective of the freedom of expression, because the court should be concerned with any country’s laws that make speech a crime. It’s understandable that the Court wants to be very careful about ensuring that states only criminalize a speech in the most extreme circumstances. This is not a finding Armenia needs to be concerned with. People who talks about the Armenian Genocide are not being prosecuted in the courts of Yerevan. They are, however, being prosecuted by courts in Turkey. And it is interesting that in the aftermath of the judgment Turkey’s former Foreign Minister said to Al Jazeera that “Oh, Turkey celebrates the judgment, because it respects freedom of expression.” The reality is that in all the cases that have come before the European Court up to 2014 there have been 591 findings of violation of expression and almost half of them are violations by Turkey. What we hope for is that Turkey is paying close attention to the judgment. We hope Turkey embraces this high standard for freedom of expression that has been set so that journalists like Hrant Dink are no longer prosecuted by the Turkish court for insulting Turkishness or insulting the Turkish state,” the lawyer said.

In conclusion, Amal Clooney said it was a true honor to represent Armenia in this case. “Looking back I’m sure Armenians don’t really care much about what Perincek has to say. If we look at the issue as a whole, we can say that Armenians care about what the Pope will say, and we know that the Pope has come out to say this was genocide. We know that President Obama, before he became President, said it was genocide. So, you may have Turkey continue to deny that reality, but they can no longer after today’s judgment point to the decision of the European Court of Human Rights to support that view,” Mrs. Clooney concluded.

Transcripts by Public Radio of Armenia.

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Grand Chamber judgment Perincek v. Switzerland ECHR 15.10.2015

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Geoffrey Robertson was present as third party for Armenia at the ECHR in Strasbourg on Thursday for the case Perinçek v Switzerland.

Here the judgment by the ECHR 

Source ECHR Press : http://t.co/tpc04cVrXF

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The  disappointed reaction in Switzerland

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La Liberté – Presse

The Swiss anti-racism legislation prohibits denial, gross minimisation and justification of genocide or of other crimes against humanity.

Amal Clooney takes on Armenia genocide case at the ECHR in Strasbourg

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Amal Clooney looks lovely as she arrives at the European Court of Human Rights to advocate for the defense of Armenia on Wednesday (January 28) in Strasbourg, France.

The 36-year-old lawyer spoke about the denial of the Armenian genocide in the appeal of Perincek vs. Switzerland before the Grand Chamber of the European Court.

The case involves the conviction by Swiss courts of Dogu Perincek, a Turkish political party leader, who had traveled to Switzerland in 2005 with the explicit intent of denying the truth of the Armenian Genocide. In 2008, Perincek appealed the Swiss ruling to the European Court of Human Rights.

There is a family link between Amal Clooney (née Alamuddin) and ‘Papa’ Jakob Kuenzler, a Swiss missionary known as “the father of Armenian orphans.” Kuenzler and his wife had diligently aided the Armenian community in Ourfa for 25 years until the Genocide. Then in the 1920’s, the Kuenzlers began working for Near East Relief, evacuating thousands of Armenian orphans from Turkey to Ghazir, Lebanon, where Armenian girls wove the famous ‘White House rug’ which was donated to U.S. Pres. Calvin Coolidge in 1925. The Kuenzlers’ daughter Ida married Najib Alamuddin, the cousin of Amal’s grandfather, Khalil Alamuddin. In 1970, Ida Kuenzler published a remarkable book about her father’s devoted humanitarian work: “Papa Kuenzler and the Armenians.”Source : HARUT SASSOUNIAN Publisher of The “California Courier”, USA

The cousin of Amal’s grandfather, Sheikh Najib, or the Flying Sheikh, as he was dubbed, was a man ahead of his time. In the pre-civil war period, which everyone agrees was something of a golden age, he embodied all of Lebanon’s achingly huge potential, first as chairman of Middle East Airlines and then as a government minister.

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It was a court room and not a red carpet, but this journalist couldn’t resist to ask about her style. Yes, her style. She defended Armenia cause with more than 1 millions deaths and this journalist asked about her style …

https://legal.edeandravenscroft.co.uk/BuyItem.aspx

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The pointed pumps are by Paule Ka

available here 380 euros

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Here the video of Amal Clooney’s speech

Videos – Amal Clooney’s arrival

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Amal Clooney choosen to Represent Armenia in European Court

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Amal Clooney will be one of the attorneys representing Armenia next month at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).

Here a part of the article written by Harout Sassounianhttp://www.thecaliforniacourier.com/

Amal Clooney will be a great asset to Armenia’s legal team in Strasbourg, in the appeal of Perincek vs. Switzerland before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights on January 28.

The case involves the conviction by Swiss courts of Dogu Perincek, a Turkish political party leader, who had travelled to Switzerland in 2005 with the explicit intent of denying the truth of the Armenian Genocide. In 2008, Perincek appealed the Swiss ruling to the European Court of Human Rights. A majority of five out of seven ECHR judges ruled on Dec. 17, 2013 that Switzerland had violated Perincek’s right to free expression.

Last year, when ECHR’s lower court was considering Perincek’s case, Armenia did not participate. Turkey, however, intervened by submitting extensive documentation questioning the veracity of the Armenian Genocide. This time around Armenia will take part with a strong legal team, which includes Geoffrey Robertson QC, a preeminent international lawyer and author of the remarkable book, “An Inconvenient Genocide: Who Now Remembers the Armenians?” Robertson will be joined in court by his associate Amal Clooney, and two Armenian government representatives Gevorg Kostanyan and Emil Babayan.