Turkish Papers Distort Armenian Comments

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Chairman of the Armenian-Turkish Business Development Committee Arsen Ghazarian called on all Armenian businessmen–politicians and reporters to abstain from answering political questions by Turkish journalists. "They may be exploited for subjective or objective reasons which may harm Armenian-Turkish relations," he said.

"When Turkey is facing major problems and does not know how to respond to worldwide debates on the recognition of Armenian Genocide and its national moral stance–all Armenia’s should abstain from commenting on those subjects while communicating with Turks," Ghazarian told Armenpress.

Recently–the Armenian state folk dance ensemble gave several concerts in Istanbul–which were widely covered by both local Armenian and Turkish newspapers. The concerts were preceded by hot debates on the Armenian Genocide issue and the local mass media’s interest in hearing the opinion of Armenia’s was very big. An interview with Arsen Ghazarian was published by the Turkish Hurriyet and Milliyet dailies–which angered Ghazarian.

Ghazarian said the papers had completely distorted his thoughts and radically changed the ideological sense of what he had said. Thus–the idea expressed by the Armenian businessman that the two peoples are neighbors and can cooperate in cultural–economic sectors was presented in print by the Turkish papers as "Armenia is part of Turkey." The comment "Armenia is a young state and economically weak developed" were presented by the Turkish newspapers as "Armenia is a poor country with hungry population."

The Turkish government’s policy on defending Azerbaijan’s interests and the economic blockade of Armenia have refreshed the pain of the past and are some of the reasons why Armenia’s are bringing the Genocide issue back on the agenda. Ghazarian said Turkey has to revise its position if it wants to embark on a dialogue with Armenia.

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