RUBEN SAFRASTYAN: IMPORTANCE OF GUL'S VISIT TO ARMENIA SHOULDN'T BE EXAGGERATED

PanARMENIAN.Net
01.09.2008 16:03 GMT+04:00

/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Turkish President Abdullah Gul's decision to arrive
in Yerevan is conditioned by drastic changes in the geopolitical
situation due to Russia's recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia,
Director of the Institute of Oriental Studies at the RA Academy of
Sciences, prof. Ruben Safrastyan told a PanARMENIAN.Net reporter.

"In an attempt to resume the normal course, Turkey offered a 'Caucasian
platform'. Moreover, it wants to gain a foothold while Russia increases
its presence in the Caucasus. That is why Gul agreed to pay a visit
to Yerevan. However, the basics of Turkey's policy toward Armenia
will not be changed," he said.

The importance of Gul's visit to Armenia shouldn't be exaggerated,
according to him.

"The Armenian President has done right. Under the circumstances, Turkey
just tries to pursue a more flexible policy towards Armenia. I do not
think that Ankara will sacrifice its national interests to relations
with Azerbaijan. Furthermore, don't forget about the Armenian Genocide
resolution that is likely to be put on agenda again, with Democrats
coming to power," prof. Safrastyan said.

As to the possibility of Gyumri-Kars railroad startup, he said, it's
quite real, because Russia is interested in the project, which will
somehow suspend Kars-Tbilisi-Baku initiative.