Academics show Elysée example in Turkey-Armenia relations

A group of intellectuals claimed the Elysée Treaty could be taken as an example to repair Turkey and Armenia’s diplomatic ties.

Istanbul Şehir University hosted a two-day conference titled “Turkish-Armenian Relations in the Light of the French-German Experience” on the 50th Anniversary of the Elysée Treaty.

Academic Ferhat Kentel of Istanbul Şehir University said: “The Germans and the French wrote their history together. Why shouldn’t we do it as well? We should bear in mind that Turks and Armenians shared a common area in Anatolia.”

Academic Muzaffer Şenel says nations are ready to reconcile, and even though states have their red lines, people could urge their states.

“The wars between France and Germany were the main reason of centuries of war and destruction in Europe, but the Elysée Treaty in 1963 put an end to the enmity,” he said.

“We aim to have people pose some questions: What can we do in order for coexisting and reconciliation, taking the Elysée Treaty as an example?” Şenel said. “Yes, there is a bitter history but how can we turn this bitter history into a part of culture of living together?”

Şenel added that they consider carrying the project to Armenia if there is a demand, and voiced the Şehir University’s hope to host Armenian students as part of exchange programs.

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