It's long been a Turkish 'red line' for which all the country's recent modern leaders have reacted fiercely at the mere suggestion, and which only thirty countries in the world officially acknowledge. It's being widely reported that President Joe Biden is preparing to declare the formal US recognition of the Armenian genocide, which was the mass systematic killing of over one million Armenians in Asia Minor from 1915-1917 at the end of the Ottoman Empire. Hundreds of thousands of Greek and Assyrian Christians were also slaughtered in the name of achieving 'Turkification'.
According to CNN on Thursday, "Two people familiar with the decision said the President was expected to make the declaration as part of an official statement on Remembrance Day, which falls on Saturday. Both said it was possible he would change his mind before then, and issue a statement merely recognizing the event without describing it as genocide."
Congressional leaders as well as Armenian-Americans have for decades lobbied for greater recognition of the event which was carried out by the Young Turk government during the World War I period. However, the term itself has for years been banned in Turkey's parliament and results in swift crackdowns and legal measures for any journalist wishing to write about it within the country.
Turkey's longtime pressure campaign has worked in many Western countries. For example, the Trump administration had blocked a 2019 bipartisan Congressional effort to pass legislation recognizing the Armenian genocide.
Thus Biden's recognition will mark a major break from all predecessors, who didn't want to rile relations with the powerful NATO ally.
According to to further details from the Associated Press, "The anticipated move — something Biden had pledged to do as a candidate — could further complicate an already tense relationship with Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Administration officials had not informed Turkey as of Wednesday, and Biden could still change his mind, according to one official."
Biden's USAID Administrator Nominee Samantha Power weighed in on Wednesday...
Telling the truth, and standing up to bullies and genocide deniers, will be of enormous consequence. 1/3https://t.co/8lxJaxfIR7— Samantha Power (@SamanthaJPower) April 22, 2021
Amid rumblings the administration is poised to pull the trigger on the controversial recognition, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu early in the week warned of already soured relations, "If the United States wants our relations to get worse, it’s up to them."