Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., faced criticism Wednesday after voting “present” on a House resolution to formally recognize the mass killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as a genocide.
The measure, H.Res.296, passed the chamber by an overwhelming 405-to-11 margin, representing a forceful rebuke to Turkey following the NATO ally’s recent incursion against the Kurds along the Turkish-Syrian border.
Two other House members also voted “present” with Omar: fellow Democrat Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas, and one Republican, Paul Gosar of Arizona.
But it was Omar’s vote that drew the dismay of Armenian advocacy groups and political organizations.
Omar’s “votes and actions … do not represent the best of American or Muslim values,” said Van Krikorian, the co-chair of the Armenian Assembly of America. “Innocent people were and are being slaughtered, and there is a universal need to defend the victims of genocide and ethnic cleansing, not to stand with or defer to the murderers.”
Krikorian said his organization would request a meeting with the freshman Democrat to “clarify her views.”
Article URL : https://www.nbcnews.com/news/amp/ncna1073991