Turkey withdrew its ambassador from Stockholm after the Swedish parliament voted to classify as genocide the World War I-era mass killings of ethnic Armenians by Ottoman Turkey.
The parliament went against the Swedish government's official position. Sweden's Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the move regrettable for allegedly posing another obstacle in the way of the troubled attempt to normalize relations between Armenia and Turkey, the RIA Novosti agency reported on March 12.
Sweden's 349-seat assembly narrowly passed the resolution, which was sponsored by the left-leaning minority, Stockholm News reported on March 11. Earlier in March, the US House of Representatives' Foreign Affairs Committee approved a non-binding resolution on genocide recognition.
Armenia has long pushed for international recognition of the slaughter as genocide, but Turkey claims that the era's volatility, rather than a targeted ethnic cleansing campaign, was responsible for the large-scale loss of life.