No announcement yet.

ANKARA: Turkish president says no decision on Armenian visit yet -

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • ANKARA: Turkish president says no decision on Armenian visit yet -

    Anatolia News Agency, Turkey
    Aug 31 2008

    Turkish president says no decision on Armenian visit yet

    Ankara, 31 August: Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who
    attended the 30 August victory reception hosted at the Gazi officer's
    club in Ankara, signalled Saturday that President Abdullah Gul might
    travel to Armenia.

    Commenting on the possibility of President Abdullah Gul's travelling
    to Armenia for a national soccer match after decades of no diplomatic
    exchange with this country, Erdogan said he wished it would bring
    positive results, hinting that the president might have actually
    decided to accept invitation of Armenian President Serzh Sargsian.

    Erdogan also said Turkey's Foreign Minister Ali Babacan would
    accompany Gul during the trip to discuss relations with Armenia.

    However, Gul, who also attended the reception, told reporters that
    they did not reach a decision on the matter yet saying that they were
    still contemplating.

    Armenian President Sargsian, who publicly declared that he would
    shortly take steps to revive relations with Turkey, has recently
    invited his Turkish counterpart Gul to Armenia to watch together the
    2010 World Cup qualifying round game between the two countries on 6

    Yerivan based Mediamax news agency quoted Sargsian as having said this
    game "would contribute to normalisation of relations between the two
    countries," during a visit to Moscow in June.

    On 24 July, Babacan expressed Turkey's willingness to normalize
    relations with Armenia at a press conference in New York, saying that
    Turkey also wanted to create an atmosphere of dialogue with Armenia.

    Referring to letters Turkish president, prime minister and other high
    level officials sent to their Armenian counterparts shortly after the
    recent elections in this country, Babacan had announced that these
    letters aimed at opening a new door of dialogue with the new
    (Armenian) administration.

    Babacan said it was natural for Turkey - whose aim was to have zero
    problems with its neighbours - to expect concrete steps from Armenia
    and expressed his belief that Turkey's problems could be solved
    through dialogue, and underlined importance of setting up a joint
    committee of historians to deal with the incidents of 1915.

    Later in July, Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian told
    Mediamax that they wanted to normalise relations with
    Turkey. Nalbandian said to this end they wished Gul would accept
    Sargsian's invitation to watch the qualifier in Yerevan, adding that
    it would create an opportunity to discuss bilateral relations.

    Nalbandian said Armenia took a step by inviting Gul. "This initiative
    received positive response in the international arena. Now it is
    Turkey's turn."