It is the first time that the United States has used the term to refer to the 1915 killings by Ottoman forces. Turkey disputes the label.
The United States has recognized the 1915 massacre of as many as 1.5 million Armenians by the Ottoman Empire as genocide, President Joe Biden said in a statement on Saturday.
We remember the lives of all those who died in the Ottoman-era Armenian genocide and recommit ourselves to preventing such an atrocity from ever again occurring,” he said.
“And we remember so that we remain ever-vigilant against the corrosive influence of hate in all its forms.”
Minutes after Biden’s declaration, Turkey responded by saying it “entirely” rejected the label.
Armenians have long referred to the mass killings during World War 1 as the Armenian genocide.
Turkey rejects the label, and which the United States until now has refrained from using.
It means President Biden has fufilled a campaign pledge to describe the killings as a deliberate attempt to wipe out the Armenian people.
But the move could spell problems for ties with the Turkish government, which is a member of the NATO military alliance.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated as events unfold.