Sep 1, 2009

YEREVAN, September 1. /ARKA/. Armenian diplomacy should not lose its
vigilance, Director of Oriental Studies Institute of Armenian Academy
of Sciences Ruben Safrastyan told journalists Tuesday, in commenting
the joint statement of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs
and the foreign ministries of Armenia and Turkey about establishing
diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey.

"There is no doubt that the protocols about establishing diplomatic
relations between Armenia and Turkey and developing bilateral relations
is a landmark achievement of our diplomacy. Yet, out diplomats should
not relax and should work even better," Safrastyan said.

Armenia and Turkey agreed to start internal political consultations
about two preliminary protocols signed during the Swiss mediated
negotiations - the protocol about establishing diplomatic relations
between the two countries and the protocol about developing bilateral

Safrastyan appreciated the clear and quite tough policy implemented
by Armenia recently.

According to Safrastyan, the categorical statement of Armenian
President Serzh Sargsyan that he would not leave for Turkey if "Turkey
does not take certain steps" played positive role in the process.

As to Turkey's interest in the signing of the documents, the main
reason for it was Turkey's geopolitical ambitions and its wish to
join 0Athe EU, Safrastyan said.

No diplomatic relations exist between Armenia and Turkey, and the
Armenian-Turkish border has been closed since 1993 initiated by
official Ankara.

The first warming of the relations occurred on September 6 2008
when Turkish President Abdullah Gul arrived in Yerevan for the first
time on the invitation of the Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan for
watching together the football match between the nationals of Armenia
and Turkey in 2010 championship qualifying games. During this visit,
the two countries' presidents discussed possible normalization of
the bilateral relations.