French President Francois Hollande will conduct a historic visit to Turkey next week during which he will sit down with Rakel Dink, the widow of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink, who was assassinated seven years ago, the Hurriyet Daily New reports.
The Armenian Genocide issue has has long poisoned relations between Turkey and France. In an effort to put relations back on track, Hollande will try to prevent the genocide issue from overshadowing his efforts to improve ties with Ankara. In this respect, he is expected to give messages of reconciliation as the Turkish government is also keen on mending fences with Armenia, with which it has no diplomatic relations, the article reads.
Hollande’s meeting with the widow of Hrant Dink, a figure that worked for Turkish-Armenian reconciliation, will take place within that setting. Rakel Dink is currently the director of the Hrant Dink Foundation.
Hollande will become the first French president to conduct a state visit to Turkey in 22 years; following his official talks in Ankara, he will hold several meetings in Istanbul.