Clerics take part in the canonization ceremony for the victims of the Armenian Genocide in Echmiadzin, outside Yerevan, on April 23, 2015. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV
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The Armenian Church Thursday conferred sainthood on some 1.5 million Armenians massacred by Ottoman forces a century ago, in what is believed to be the biggest canonization service in history.The two-hour ceremony outside Armenia's main cathedral, Echmiadzin, close to the capital Yerevan, ended at 7:15 pm local time, or 19:15 according to the 24-hour clock (15:15 GMT), to symbolise the year when the massacres started during World War I. Ankara says 300,000 to 500,000 Armenians and at least as many Turks died in civil -- rather than religious -- strife when Armenians rose up against their Ottoman rulers and sided with invading Russian troops.
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