(OTTAWA – February 24, 2022) – Today the Armenian National Committee of Canada issued the following statement, regarding Petition E-3780, tabled by MP Michael Cooper of St. Alberts-Edmonton.
“On February 16, 2022, MP Michael Cooper of St. Albert-Edmonton tabled a petition in the House of Commons related to events that took place in February 1992, in the town of Ivanyan (Khojaly) in Artsakh. Prior to tabling the petition, MP Cooper made a statement spreading falsehoods and Azerbaijani state propaganda.
“In his statement, MP Cooper made unsubstantiated accusations against the Armenian Army – without providing the appropriate context – while completely ignoring the unspeakable war crimes and human rights violations committed by Azerbaijan.
“Furthermore, prior to tabling the petition, the Armenian National Committee of Canada (ANCC) contacted MP Cooper’s office, requesting clarification on his position regarding the petition he chose to sponsor. MP Cooper’s office responded by stating that the MP’s sponsorship of the petition does not imply support to the petition, effectively lying to Canadians.
“Following MP Cooper’s statement, the ANCC immediately contacted the MP’s office, demanding a full retraction and an apology, while urging Canadians to do the same by calling and e-mailing MP Cooper’s office. The ANCC also contacted the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition (OLO), requesting the necessary clarifications related to this matter.
“In response, the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) provided the ANCC firm assurances that MP Cooper’s unsanctioned statements do not reflect the official policy of the Conservative Party whatsoever and that the MP was only speaking on his behalf and not on behalf of the Conservative Party.
“Moreover, the CPC has reiterated that it continues to hold the same policy position regarding the Artsakh conflict, calling for the respect of the people’s right to self-determination, resumption of negotiations through the OSCE Minsk Group and the return of all Armenian POW’s held by Azerbaijan.
“The ANCC welcomes the assurances provided by the OLO and continues to call on MP Cooper to retract his statement and apologize to Canadians.”
The ANCC is the largest and the most influential Armenian-Canadian grassroots human rights organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout Canada and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCC actively advances the concerns of the Armenian-Canadian community on a broad range of issues and works to eliminate abuses of human rights throughout Canada and the world.
Contact: Sevag Belian – (613) 235-2622 | [email protected]