NALBANDIAN CLAIMS NAGORNO-KARABAKH AND TURKISH-ARMENIAN RELATIONS ARE SEPARATE ISSUES

Journal of Turkish Weekly
Nov 2 2009

Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian has stated that the
improvement of Turkey-Armenia relations and the Nagorno-Karabakh
issue are completely separate processes. Rejecting Turkish calls
for concessions over the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Nalbandian said
that this would not be given in exchange for the recently signed
rapprochement between Turkey and Armenia.

Speaking in an interview in Yerevan, the Armenian foreign minister
stated that since the negotiations were over, both Yerevan and Ankara
were obliged to open the border and move to establish diplomatic
relations, as was agreed. "Why did we sign two protocols if we
are not going to ratify and implement them?" Nalbandian asked. He
continued, "I think the whole international community is waiting for
quick ratification and implementation and respect for the agreements
which are in the protocols...If one side will delay and create some
obstacles in the way of ratification and implementation, I think it
could bear all the responsibility for the negative consequences."

The rapprochement protocols, signed October 10, caused trouble between
Turkey and its ally Azerbaijan, which is embroiled in a conflict with
Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh. According to those familiar with the
situation, Turkey is hoping for at least some progress in the peace
negotiations over the region. The international mediators involved
in the conflict, the United States, Russia, and France, state that
progress is being made between Yerevan and Baku, but the chance of
an imminent solution is slim.