Syriac community in Locarno commemorates 109th anniversary of 1915 Sayfo Genocide, calls for Swiss recognition

LOCARNO, Switzerland — On the 109th anniversary of the 1915 Sayfo Genocide, a commemoration was held in Locarno, Switzerland.

The event began with an opening speech by Yashar Rhawi, delivered on behalf of the Memorial Committee of the Sayfo Genocide. Rhawi emphasized the importance of Switzerland recognizing the Sayfo, which saw hundreds of thousands of Syriacs (Arameans–Assyrians–Chaldeans) murdered by the authorities of the Ottoman Empire and their local tribal allies.

The event was attended by several officials, including Michele Guerra, an official of the Ticino Provincial Parliament; Rafael De Rosa, MP in the Ticino Provincial Parliament; Nicola Pini, an official of Locarno Municipality; and Giorgio Foniyo, an MP in the Bern Parliament.

In their speeches, all Swiss MPs and officials underscored the importance of Switzerland recognizing the 1915 Sayfo Genocide, which killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people simply because of their identity.

Tuma Danho, representing the Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese of Switzerland, also delivered a speech.

The event concluded with a dinner prepared by the Women’s Committee.