LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A pair of City Council members applauded the cancellation of a planned Ottoman-era military marching band that they said could be perceived as “a provocation of the Armenian community” in Southern California.
Los Angeles City Council President Eric Garcetti and Council member Paul Krekorian released the following joint statement on Wednesday after organizers called off the parade slated for Oct. 3 on Hollywood Boulevard between Highland and La Brea avenues.
While the lawmakers voiced their firm commitment to First Amendment rights, they welcomed the unexpected cancellation.
“This planned performance, supposedly to celebrate an event taking place in Orange County, is a provocation of the Armenian community at a time when the community celebrates 20 years of Armenian independence,” the said in a statement.
The Armenian Youth Federation and other groups on Facebook and other social networking sites cheered the decision.
Parade participants were set to march in their imperial dress bearing “Turkish flags, swords, shields, and instruments”, according to AYF.
An estimated 1.5 million Armenians were killed by Turkish troops under the Ottoman empire from 1915 to 1923. Turkey has never officially acknowledged the murders as genocide.