TABDC Co Chairman Calls Turkish Acceptance of “Ararat” Film

YEREVAN (Armenpress)–In an interview with the Turkish ATV television reporter Leyla Umar–Kaan Soyak–the Turkish co-chairman of the Turkish-Armenian Business Development Committee (TABDC) said that he would not like to discredit the importance of the movie "Ararat," shot by Canadian Armenian film director Atom Egoyan–which is about the Genocide of 1915. "However–’Ararat’ depicts a negative image of Turkey just as Midnight Express did," Soyak said.

In response to a question what Turkey should do to prevent the filming of "Ararat," Soyak said that Turkey should not do anything to prevent the making of this movie. "These kinds of films are the result of two states failing to communicate and solve their problems. Direct dialogue between the two states is what will ultimately create a positive atmosphere to solve the issues that are portrayed in this movie," he said.

In response to a question of whether or not he would–as a knowledgeable person in Armenian-Turkish relations–make a proposal to Armenian foreign minister Vartan Oskanian to meet with his Turkish counterpart Ismail Cem–if the same proposal was made by Leyla Umar to Cem–Soyak said "Yes–of course. I believe that we can solve all our problems through direct talks."

When the reporter asked if Soyak thought this film should be shown in Turkey–Soyak said he did not see any reason to prevent Turks from watching this movie. "It is just a movie. Furthermore–I believe that the film can attract tourists to East Anatolia."

Soyak also said it was possible to work with a world-renown known Armenian film director–such as Atom Egoyan–and promote the tourist potential of Armenia and Turkey. "I wish Egoyan could also make movies that would contribute to the prosperity of the region," he said.

Soyak also said that the potential of Turkish-Armenian cooperation would be realized–if the borders were opened–especially in the field of energy. "Electricity sales from Armenia to Turkey can start in 10 minutes," he said.

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