Swedish MPs called on their government to fulfill its responsibilities regarding the Seyfo massacre, which the parliament recognised in 2010.
Liberal Party Deputy and Foreign Policies Spokesperson Fredrik Malm put the issue on the parliament’s agenda this week and mentioned that there are signs that US President Joe Biden will also openly acknowledge the massacre. Malm asked the Swedish Government to fulfill its responsibilities regarding the parliament’s 2010 decision.
Christian Democrat MP Pia Steensland also raised the issue in parliament. She reminded MPs that in 1915 there was a genocide against Armenians, Assyrians-Syriac-Chaldeans, and Pontus Greeks, and more than 1.5 million Christians were deliberately murdered for ethnic and religious reasons
Steensland asked the Swedish government to push for the recognition of Seyfo internationally, and for it to be officially accepted by the United Nations and the European Union. Turkey should be pressured to recognise the genocide, she added.
Although the right-wing parties voted “no” in 2010, the recognition of the Seyfo genocide was accepted with the votes of the left-wing parties and the environmentalist party in Sweden.
Answering questions about Seyfo in parliament, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde said that during the First World War the Ottoman Empire committed terrible atrocities against the Armenian people and other minorities, but she did not call what happened in 1915 genocide. Instead she stated that one million people lost their lives during the attacks.
The Seyfo genocide was the mass slaughter and deportation of Syriac Christians in eastern regions of the Ottoman Empire and neighboring regions of Persia. Seyfo is also known as the Assyrian genocide and is recognised as a genocide by some states. It occurred concurrently with the Armenian and Greek genocides during World War I and was led by Ottoman troops and some Kurdish tribes.