For its fifth edition, the CCAF dinner is more than ever a meeting point for the Armenian community in France … and even beyond: this year, the Turkish MP Garo Paylan made the trip to discuss with Emmanuel Macron, and receive the Vermeil medal from the hands of the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo.
An award well deserved for the courageous politician of opposition, long and several times applauded by the 500 people present in the room of reception of the hotel of the Collector this Tuesday, January 30, 2018.
” There is one that is in immense danger today in Turkey. And he’s here tonight, with us! I want to talk about Garo Paylan, “said Mourad Papazian, co-chair of the CCAF, in the preamble. ” Your life is in danger every day. You are a hero of democracy, of human rights “: by giving back the highest distinction of the capital, Anne Hidalgo wanted to prove that” whenever you need us, the Armenians will be there, and Paris will be there “. ” Thank you for being here, thank you for the action you take ,” said Mourad Papazian, a thank you widely shared by all those present who have flocked to his side to say a few words and support him in its indispensable action in the democratic opposition of the Turkish Parliament.
Garo Paylan, Ara Toranian, Emmanuel Macron, Murad Papazian © Claire Barbuti.
At his side at the head table, on the one hand the director Costa-Gavras, sensitive to the Armenian cause, but also Serge and Beate Klasfeld who received the medal of the courage of the CCAF from the hands of the co-president Ara Toranian , for their fight, a fight of justice and memory.
We have always been with the Armenian people ,” said Serge. And we are also campaigning for Israel to do its best for recognition. We also hope that the law repressing the denial of the Armenian genocide will be voted in France, as well as the one that protects the Jewish community. “
LIVE | Speech of the President of the Republicbefore the Coordinating Council of the Armenian Organizations of France (CCAF) .
— Élysée (@Elysee) January 30, 2018
The President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, also spoke about this law in his speech of about thirty minutes: ” We must fight against negationism (…) It is essential that the national representation recovers in the coming months of this subject “. A necessity all the more urgent as, as pointed out by the master of ceremonies André Manoukian relying on the writings of Paul Ricœur ( Memory, History, Forgetting ): ” We Armenians, if we want to apply the principle of forgiveness, there would be no one to forgive because Turkey always denies “.
Ara Toranian insisted on the importance of such a penalization law, ” as is the official inscription in the Republican calendar of commemorations of April 24th or the teaching of genocide in school curricula according to the terms advocated by the mission of Vincent Duclert “. On this first point too, President Macron made commitments: ” For the duty of the memoir, we support the Republican calendar the inscription of a day of commemoration of the genocide . This is a commitment I made when I was a candidate, and I confirm it tonight . “
” Francois Hollande has done a remarkable job for the Armenian cause. We are counting on you to pick up his arrow and launch it even further, “said André Manoukian in a poetico-just formulation of which he has the secret. The musician and man of television was illustrated throughout the evening by his lyrical speeches, personal and humorous. In particular, he paid homage to his grandmother, ” to whom I doubtless owe my immoderate love for the mountains. She was a hiking champion. She made Amasya / Deir ez-Zor, 1000 kilometers on foot, with her sisters, whose face she smeared with mud so that they would not get kidnapped … But these stories you know them all “, because they are those of every Armenian present in the room.
In the room, we can note the presence of two ambassadors, Viguen Tchitetchian and Jonathan Lacote, elected officials of Armenian origin (the mayor of Lyon Georges Képénékian, Patrick Devedjian, deputies Danièle Cazarian and Jacques Marilossian ” happy to be there, for my first CCAF dinner, which has a great importance “, …) or not (Luc Carvounas, Valérie Boyer, René Rouquet, François-Michel Lambert, many new members of En Marche, …), religious figures, journalists (Laurent Joffrin, Daniel Bilalian, Audrey Pulvar, Georges Malbrunot, Valerie Toranian, …) or artists (Levon Sayan, Alain Terzian, Matthew Madenian, Robert Kechichian, …).
” All the fights we are waging with you are not purely retrospective ,” continued the head of state, a forget-me-not pinned to his jacket. By your action, you force us to face our present, and open our eyes to the tragedies of our time “, speaking in particular of Burma, Libya, Syria, in particular face Patrick Karam, president of the Chredo, and Elise Boghossian, both present in the room. ” As yesterday it welcomed the Armenians fleeing the genocide, it is the honor of France to welcome the refugees today “, assured Emmanuel Macron, coming to the dialogue he has engaged with Turkey: ” We need Turkey “.
What Toranian has nuanced: ” We are told that we need Turkey. Without a doubt. But in any case not a Turkey that threatens its neighbors , which occupies Cyprus, a member state of the European Union, which throws its journalists in prison, which today has 55,000 political prisoners, who dismissed 160,000 civil servants for offense of opinion and waging war on Kurds inside and outside its borders, including those fighting Daesh on the ground. What Emmanuel Macron, who received Erdogan at the Elysee less than a year ago, has persisted: ” I assume the choice to continue to speak, to say things, to get the results. I assume this imbalance, this choice more difficult, less glorious than big statements but more useful.
Another subject that crystallized the discussions last night: Artsakh and its security . ” Tonight I want to take you somewhere else. Come with me to Karabakh, “said Mourad Papazian to the President of the Republic, who rebounded on these words in his own speech:” I will not accompany you (…) I think your fight is essential. But I also think of the role of France, which is to build the necessary compromise. I hope to come the day we will have to settle all that, because the status quo is not an option. “
Wednesday, January 31, 2018,
Claire © armenews.com