US Senate unanimously passed resolution recognizing Armenian genocide

Turkey lashes at US resolution on 1915 Armenian events

US Senate officially recognizes century-old Armenian genocide

"I am thankful that this resolution has passed at a time in which there are still survivors of the genocide [who] will be able to see that the Senate acknowledges what they went through", Menendez said. But a vote in the Senate was repeatedly blocked by Trump's fellow Republican senators since meeting with Erdogan.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said in a statement the Senate had tried for three consecutive weeks to pass the resolution and he was "grateful that today we have succeeded".

The House passed an identical resolution overwhelmingly in October in what was widely seen as a rebuke to Turkey after its invasion of northern Syria.

This resolution's passage comes a day after a Senate committee advanced a sanctions bill aimed at Turkey for its military offensive against Kurdish forces in Syria in October and its recent purchase of the S-400 missile system from Russian Federation.

'I say to my friends and colleagues that genocide is genocide, ' Menendez said on the Senate floor. "Senators in this body should have the simple courage to say it plainly, say it clearly and say it without reservation". Each time, a Republican senator objected, citing White House disapproval. "This is a moment of truth that was far too long coming".

The US Congress on Thursday formally recognized the 1915-1917 murder of up to 1.5 million Armenians as genocide.

"This is a tribute to the memory of 1.5 million victims of the first #Genocide of the 20th century and bold step in promotion of the prevention agenda". The Ottoman Empire was centered in present-day Turkey.

The designation as a genocide by Congress is a significant political development as Turkey maintains to this day the killings did not constitute genocide and disputes the death toll, putting the figure closer to 300,000.

Ankara has repeatedly proposed the creation of a joint commission of historians from Turkey and Armenia plus worldwide experts to examine the issue.

The resolution declares that it is U.S. policy "to commemorate the Armenian Genocide through official recognition and remembrance".

The Armenian resolution and the sanction bill passed by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee "endanger the future of our bilateral relations", said Fahrettin Altun, a spokesman for Erdogan.

Turkey's decadeslong opposition to the resolution was "the longest-lasting veto over US foreign policy" by a foreign power in American history, Hamparian said.

Trump had cast his November 13 meeting with Erdogan as "wonderful" despite no concrete breakthrough on deep disagreements such as Ankara's purchase of Russian weapon systems and diverging views on Syria policy.

Republican senators also have been incensed with Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 missile defense systems, which the United States says pose a threat to its F-35 fighter jets and can not be integrated into North Atlantic Treaty Organisation defenses. A U.S. Senate committee backed legislation on Wednesday to impose sanctions on Turkey, pushing Trump to take a harder line on the issue, as many lawmakers blame Trump for giving a green light to Ankara for its military offensive.

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