France: Student suspended for Armenian Genocide denial

France: Student suspended for Armenian Genocide denial

According to the History of Truth site, the school canceled the homework assignment. In any case, this story did not exactly make headlines in France.


Mustafa Doğan, a 13-year-old Turk, was suspended from a school in Nancy after insisting that there was no Armenian genocide.


Doğan’s history teacher asked a question about the events of 1915 and the “Armenian genocide” in a written exam. Having previously argued with the teacher over the issue, the Turkish student became angry and wrote, “Even if it did happen, they deserved it.”

Speaking to Today’s Zaman, Doğan said his teacher threatened to give him a zero on the exam if he denied the genocide. “This was an important exam and necessary to finish secondary school,” Doğan said. Following the exam, the school principal phoned Doğan’s father and requested an immediate meeting, claiming that his son had violated French law. In turn, father Mehmet Doğan said he had not seen any law stipulating punishing those who deny the Armenian genocide. “I now see where your son learns such things,” the principal allegedly told the father.

Following the quarrel, the school’s disciplinary committee suspended Mustafa Doğan for two days and gave him an assignment in which he was to recognize the validity of the genocide within two days. The homework was to be titled “Armenian Genocide Committed by the Ottoman Empire: a Crime against Humanity,” and Doğan was asked to research the historical context of the events, write a detailed list of how many people were killed and how it was organized, meet with genocide survivors, state that he recognizes the genocide and focus on militant Turks who committed the genocide.

While researching the events, Doğan was to not look at Turkish Web sites or consult Wikipedia. Doğan was to prepare the assignment and present it in front of his class. However, the Turkish student refused to do the assignment. “We gave you a chance to correct your mistake, now recognize the genocide!” the history teacher reportedly told him. While Doğan claimed that the bill in question had not yet been adopted, the teacher reportedly did not listen.


Mehmet Doğan accuses the school principal of racism. Noting that the teacher is putting pressure on his 13-year-old son, a boy who can easily be provoked due to his age, Doğan accused the teacher of inciting his son’s reaction. Saying he also does not recognize the genocide and supports his son in this, Mehmet Doğan said: “I wish he hadn’t written ‘Even if [the genocide] did happen, they deserved it.’ This made them angry.”

Officials from COJEP, a Strasbourg-based civil society organization established by Turks, and Mehmet Doğan will meet with school authorities on Friday to discuss Mustafa Doğan’s case.

Today’s Zaman was able to contact the principal of the Jacques Marquette secondary school, Francis Vignola. When asked for his opinion on the case, Vignola said he supported the sanctions placed on Mustafa Doğan.


Source: Today's Zaman (English)

See also: Brandenburg: Teaching Armenian genocide bad for Turks

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