CANBERRA: Federal Member for the South Australian electorate of Spence, Nick Champion has affirmed his support for Australian recognition of the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek Genocides by signing on to the Joint Justice Initiative of the Armenian-Australian, Assyrian-Australian and Greek-Australian communities.
The February 2020 launch of the Joint Justice Initiative at Australia’s Parliament House featured the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by the Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC-AU), Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA) and Australian Hellenic Council (AHC), which declares Australia’s recognition of the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek Genocides as a priority on behalf of their communities.
Champion, who is a former fruit picker from South Australia’s famous rural wine country, was elected to Parliament in 2016 after a career that included time as a political staffer and State President of the Australian Labor Party. He currently serves as the Deputy Chair of the Australian Parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.
“Our communities thank Mr. Nick Champion for joining our fight to bring Australia to the side of truth and justice on this issue by ensuring national recognition of the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek Genocides committed by the Ottoman Empire in 1915,” said Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC-AU) Executive Director, Haig Kayserian.
The Joint Justice Initiative has so far announced the support of Champion, Michael Sukkar MP, Senator Louise Pratt, Warren Entsch, Joel Fitzgibbon MP, Andrew Wilkie MP, Julian Leeser MP, Michelle Rowland MP, Senator Paul Scarr, Tony Zappia MP, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, Senator Hollie Hughes, Senator Rex Patrick, Mike Freelander MP, Senator Eric Abetz, Senator Larissa Waters, Senator Pat Dodson, Jason Falinski MP, Josh Burns MP, John Alexander MP, Senator Andrew Bragg and Bob Katter MP, with a promise of more announcements to come.
On 25th February 2020, over 100 Federal Australian parliamentarians, diplomats, departmental officials, political staffers, academics, media and community leaders were treated to cultural performances, food, wine and brandy, as well as the historic signing of a Memorandum of Understanding, which affirmed that the signatory public affairs representatives of the three communities were jointly committed to seeing Australia recognise the Turkish-committed Genocide against the Armenian, Greek and Assyrian citizens of the Ottoman Empire during World War I.