Yerevan hosts a two-day forum on regional security

Liana Yeghiazaryan

A two-day international forum on the “Dynamics of regional security in the South Caucasus” kicked off in Yerevan today. It has brought together security experts from the United States,Great Britain, Israel and Turkey. According to Major General Hayk Kotanjyan, Adviser to RA Defense Minister, Armenia’s relations with neighboring non-friendly countries are in the spotlight of the forum.

“Our country stands for security,” Armenian Deputy Foreign Minister Ashot Hovakimyan said in his opening remarks. “Instead, neighboring Azerbaijan remains a threat to regional security. That country has long been rejecting the peaceful mechanisms of settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict proposed by the OSCE Minsk Group, periodically violates the ceasefire regime and vandalizes the Armenian cultural monuments on its territory. Baku applies all its levers of corruption, trying to exert influence on our interstate relations with other countries by distorting the real historic facts,” the Deputy Foreign minister said.

Ashot Hovakimyan noted that instead of meeting its commitments, Azerbaijan continues to increase its military spending and refuses to withdraw the snipers from the line of contact.

Turkey’s representative, Rector of the Kadir Has University Mustafa Aydin, also criticized a number of steps of Azerbaijan, particularly the release and glorification of murderer Ramil Safarov.

Asked about the Armenian Genocide, Mustafa Aydin said he will take a chance to study the materials of the Armenian National Archive, which comprise another proof of the fact of genocide. He said he’s positive about the normalization of the Armenian-Turkish relations.

Aydin said the border between Armenia and Turkey must be opened and relations normalized, although it would take much time and long talks. He expressed regret about Turkey’s decision to freeze relations with Armenia.

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