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The founding act of the Great Diaspora was the
From the very beginning, the massacres of 1915-1916 were denounced as a "crime against humanity and civilization" (note in the Entente of 24 May 1915) and the "murder of a nation" (Arnold J. Toynbee). And since the word "genocide" was invented by Raphael Lemkin to define the nature of Nazi crimes against Jews in Europe, this term has also been used to define the Armenian massacres. Lemkin himself indicated that his thinking had been influenced by the Armenian precedent. Although it took place in the context of a world war, the genocide of the Armenians, like that of the Jews, does not fall within the category of "war crimes", due to its premeditation and planning, its systematic and methodical nature, and the ideological component. of 1915 and the violent expulsion of the Armenians from their territory, followed by the Sovietization of the first, short-lived independent republic (1918-1920) that appeared in the eastern provinces of Armenia, annexed by Czarist Russia a century before (1828). The Armenians presence in Europe swelled considerably with the arrival of the survivors, who were forbidden to return to the new republic of Turkey. They were joined by several hundred Armenian emigrants from the Caucasus, who played an important political role despite their small numbers. Marseille was one of the main gateways for the refugees, many of whom settled in France. Although the Armenians’ integration, even assimilation, into their European host countries increased over time, their intermixing with new migratory waves (from the Middle East and the Republic of Armenia) and increased communication strengthened the feeling of belonging to one nation and of sharing the same collective destiny. The memory of the genocide was also a strong link, like the myth of "return", which guided the sizeable "repatriation" movement of 1946-1947, but which faded in the face of continued integration.