Armenia asks EU to discuss Turkey's policies toward the ex-Soviet country

.c The Associated Press


YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) - Armenia has asked European Union leaders to
discuss the policies of Turkey, its long-time foe, toward the former
Soviet republic at an upcoming EU summit, the foreign minister said.

Armenians accuse Turks of killing up to 1.5 million Armenians in
genocide between 1915 and 1923. Turkey claims the number of deaths is
inflated and says the victims were killed in civil unrest. The two
countries have no diplomatic relations.

Armenia and Turkey are also at odds over Nagorno-Karabakh, a region of
Turkish ally Azerbaijan that has been under ethnic Armenian control
since a war that ended in 1994 without a political settlement.

In a letter, Armenian President Robert Kocharian asked EU leaders to
discuss what Armenia sees as a Turkish economic blockade during their
Dec. 17 meeting, Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanian said in a televised
interview late Wednesday. Turkey keeps its border with Armenia closed,
aggravating the impoverished country's economic plight.

EU leaders are to vote at the forthcoming summit on whether to open
membership negotiations with Turkey.


12/02/04 11:39 EST