Obama avoids labeling massacres of Armenians 'genocide'

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President Barack Obama on Saturday strongly deplored the massacres of Armenians in the final days of the Ottoman Empire, but again avoided using the controversial term "genocide" to describe it.

In a statement commemorating Armenian Remembrance Day, Obama solemnly labeled the massacres and death marches as "one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century."

Tackling an issue fraught with political landmines, Obama referred to the event as "the Meds Yeghern," a term that means the "great catastrophe" and one that is used by Armenians to describe the killings.

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