France Says Turkey’s Posturing Unfortunate

PARIS (Reuters)–France said on Friday it was committed to maintaining close ties with Turkey and regretted that a row had blown up over a French parliamentary motion recognizing the Armenian Genocide of 1915.

A Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman’said on Thursday Turkey was suspending signing a $145 million deal to buy Eryx missiles from France’s Aerospatiale until it saw the outcome of further talks on the motion in the Senate–France’s upper house.

French Foreign Ministry spokesman Yves Doutriaux told a news conference on Friday that France regretted Turkey’s reaction to the parliamentary motion.

The government had said it could not stop deputies going ahead with the motion even before it was adopted last month in the lower house–the National Assembly.

"We reiterate our commitment to the development of Franco-Turkish relations and we continue to support completely the maintenance of friendly ties and cooperation between France and Turkey," Doutriaux said.

He said French Foreign Minister Hubert Vedrine had reminded Turkish officials Tuesday that the row had nothing to do with current ties between Turkey–France and Europe.

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