Almost 30 years past after the fall of the Berlin wall, Turkey continues to keep its borders with Armenia closed.
Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian on Wednesday noted the abovementioned in his address at the plenary meeting of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament, in Brussels.
“Obviously, Armenia does its best to improve the partnership climate,” said Nalbandian. “However, the cooperative mood in our region continues to be shadowed by the conflicts and dividing lines.
“Almost 30 years past after the fall of the Berlin wall Turkey continues to keep its borders with Armenia closed.
“When President Serzh Sargsyan assumed the office ten years ago, he initiated a process of normalization of relations between Armenia and Turkey without any preconditions. Turkey agreed to proceed on this basis; and a year later, Armenia and Turkey signed in Zurich two protocols with this purpose. However, just after the signature Turkey has backtracked from the agreements. Not only has it refrained from ratifying the protocols, but Ankara has returned to the language of preconditions that it had used before the beginning of the process. Turkey has attempted to link the Armenian-Turkish normalization process to the settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict based on ungrounded claims of the Azerbaijani side. Any Turkish attempts to interfere in the Karabakh process or to link the normalization of relations with the Nagorno-Karabakh talks, harms both processes. This is a position that the whole international community have emphasized several times.
“From the beginning of the process we made it clear in our contacts with the Turkish side as well as publicly that Armenia will never put under question the fact of the Armenian Genocide or the importance of its international recognition. True reconciliation does not consist of forgetting the past or feeding young generations with tales of denial. Armenia did not require the recognition of Genocide by Turkey as a precondition for the normalization of the relations. Paradoxically it is Turkey, that for 100 years has continuously denied the Genocide, has attempted to manipulate that issue, using it as another precondition. While I touched upon this issue, speaking in the premises of the European Parliament, I would like to recall that one of the first resolutions on the recognition of the Armenian Genocide was adopted here back in 1987. Likewise, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the European Parliament for expressing its principled position on the centennial of the Armenian Genocide in 2015.
“The normalization process with Turkey could have created new opportunities for both of our nations and the region at large. Armenia spared no effort to see it succeed. Turkey has missed historic chance of reconciliation. Armenia does not resort to the language of preconditions, but equally, we shall never accept preconditions put forth by anyone. As President Sargsyan made it clear last Saturday in his speech at the Munich Security Conference, ‘We cannot wait eternally for Turkey’s response.’”