ARF Leader Stresses Turkey Has Nothing to Offer through Mere ‘Dialogue’

YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Levon Mkrtchian–who heads the Armenian Revolutionary Federation’s (ARF) faction in parliament–described an offer to the ARF to engage in "dialogue" with Turkey–as "unserious," and questioned the motives behind yesterday’s invitation.

He also questioned the credentials of Turkish businessman Kaan Soyak–who made the offer at a news conference in Yerevan yesterday. Soyak co-chairs the Turkish-Armenian Business Council (TABC).

"Dashnaktsutyun [ARF] has received no formal offers to that effect," Mkrtchian said. "I don’t know who that person represents–what goals he is pursuing here and how substantiated his proposals are."

"Offers of a dialogue addressed to Dashnaktsutyun [ARF] must be much more serious. They must specify the subjects or topics of such a dialogue. Dashnaktsutyun [ARF] ascertained those topics long ago," Mkrtchian added.

Mkrtchian argued that Turkish-Armenian rapprochement and reconciliation is hardly possible because Turkey’s ruling establishment remains unwilling to come to terms with its Ottoman past. "Modern-day Turkey–given its position on the genocide issue and policy on the Republic of Armenia–has nothing to offer Dashnaktsutyun [the ARF] in a dialogue," he said.

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