Ruben Safrastyan: Sargsyan-Aliyev meeting marks the start of a new round

Anna Nazaryan
Public Radio of Armenia

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has commented on Armenia’s invitation to participate in the sitting of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization in Yerevan. The Foreign Minister has said it’s common practice and the invitation should not be viewed as something special.

Speaking at a press conference, Davutoglu has stressed Turkey’s interest to normalize relations with Armenia. “We want the relations between Turkey and Armenia to normalize, the problem between Azerbaijan and Armenia to be solved and sustainable peace to be established in the South Caucasus as soon as possible,” he said.

What does this statement mean and what will it change? Director of the Oriental Studies Institute Ruben Safrastyan is pessimistic about such statements. “This is an imitation, and there is no ground to think there will be any progress,” he told a press conference today.

Safrastyan does not believe Turkey’s will review its approaches on the relations with Armenia and stop linking them to the Karabakh issue.

According to expert of Turkish studies Andranik Ispiryan, such statements could pursue two objectives. Turkey has filed on the Syria issue and is thus trying to divert the international community’s attention from the fact. Besides, there is another reason that could make Turkey speak about normalization of relations with Armenia; it’s the resumption of EU accession talks.

The experts advise to remember that the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide is approaching, and Turkey is trying to look peaceful.

Andranik Ispiryan says progress is possible. “Turkey may even open the shared border with Armenia, but there’s no guarantee that it won’t be closed the next day.”

Meanwhile, Turkey has welcomes the resumption of talks between Sargsyan and Aliyev. Ruben Safrastyan says, in turn, it could be the start of a new round.

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