The Senate's passage of the repeatedly stalled resolution is expected to anger Turkey, which denies there was a genocidal mass murder, insisting the Armenians died as a result of World War I. In passing the resolution, the United States joined 30 other countries recognizing Armenia's claim of genocide, which took place in the final years of the Ottoman empire that was centred in Istanbul.
Critics, including prominent Republican senators, blasted Trump as giving a green light to Erdoğan for the assault, and after the US and Turkey reached an agreement to halt it, Trump embraced the Turkish leader at the White House and removed any sanctions on senior Turkish officials.
The House of Representatives last month voted 405-11 in favor of a resolution asserting that it would be United States policy to commemorate the killing of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1923 as genocide.
The resolution had been blocked three times at the request of the White House, but won unanimous approval Thursday. Erdogan said during a White House visit last month that the House vote had "hurt deeply the Turkish nation" and had "a potential of casting a deep shadow over our bilateral relations".
Turkey condemned the measure, which passed a month after an official visit to the White House by Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, who enjoys a special rapport with President Donald Trump, amid mounting issues that have soured the relationship between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies. Lindsey Graham blocked a vote on the day of Erdoğan's visit, Sen.
Menendez grew visibly emotional as he said, "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". The resolution, spearheaded by California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff of California, does not need approval from the White House. Ted Cruz of Texas, the non-binding resolution affirms that the genocide occurred and that Turkey is responsible. Before that, about two and a half million Armenians lived on the territory of the Ottoman Empire.
The resolution, which is nonbinding, asserts that it is USA policy to commemorate as genocide the killing of 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire from 1915 to 1923. Turkey disputes the description, saying the toll has been inflated and those killed were victims of a civil war.
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But impeachment would mar his record as president and could affect his re-election chances in November 2020. Schiff (D-Burbank) spearheaded the initial impeachment hearings in the House Intelligence Committee.
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The US reportedly offered to halve tariff rates on about $350bn worth of Chinese goods, some of which had climbed as high as 25%. Trump tweeted in a markedly optimistic tone, although it was unclear if he would officially confirm the agreement on Thursday.
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'In every previous attempt to politicize history by some members of the US Congress, we reiterated our position to form a group to study it, ' Fahrettin Altun, Turkey's communications director said on Twitter in response to the resolution.
Ibrahim Kalin, Turkish presidential spokesman said Turkey "strongly condemned and rejected" the measure.
Trump had cast his November 13 meeting with Erdogan as "wonderful" despite no concrete breakthrough on deep disagreements about issues such as Ankara's purchase of Russian weapons systems and diverging views on Syria policy.
Congressional aides said the White House did not want the legislation to move ahead while it was negotiating with Ankara on sensitive issues.
"The behavior of some members of the U.S. Congress is damaging the Turkish-American ties", Altun wrote.
They have also moved to punish Turkey over its October 9 incursion into Syria.
The Senate vote follows a vote by a Senate committee to impose sanctions on Turkey after its offensive in Syria and purchase of a Russian S-400 missile system.