On behalf of the U.S. Department of State, Matthew A. Reynolds, Acting Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs sent a letter to Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Joe Biden to comment on questions regarding the process of appointment of Marie Yovanovitch as U.S. Ambassador to Armenia.
The letter received by PanARMENIAN.Net says, “Dear Mr. Chairman: I am writing in response to your concerns regarding responses to questions for the record submitted by you and Senator Menendez regarding the nomination of Marie Yovanovitch as Ambassador to Armenia. Regarding your Question #1, Ms. Yovanovitch mentions an International Visitors Program under consideration that would bring archivists from Turkey and Armenia to the United States for professional training. Our goal is to help archivists protect the evidence of the past so that future generations will have the documentation of the mass killings and deportations of Armenians committed by Ottoman soldiers and other Ottoman officials in 1915. Our goal is not to open a debate on whether the Ottomans committed these horrendous acts; it is to help preserve the documentation that supports the truth of those events. Regarding Ms. Yovanovitch’s response to Senator Menendez’s Question #8, the Administration recognizes that the mass killings, ethnic cleansing, and forced deportations of over one and a half million Armenians were conducted by the Ottoman Empire. We indeed hold Ottoman officials responsible for those crimes. In her testimony, Ms. Yovanovitch tried to convey her deep empathy with the profound suffering of the Armenian people and in no way sought to cast any doubt on historical facts. We hope this information is helpful to you. Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of further assistance on this or any other matter.”