Open Borders Rest on Preconditions, Gul Tells Turks in US

ANKARA (Hurriyet)–The Turkish-Armenian border may be opened if certain prerequisits are met and certain existing problems are solved, Turkish President Abdullah Gul told reporters Saturday.

"The aim of the talks with Armenia is to start the dialogue that will remove problems. If these problems are solved in this process, then we can have any kind of cooperation, including the opening of the borders, full-fledged relations and broader economic solidarity," Gul said.

Gul said there is support for Turkey’s proposal to set up a platform for cooperation and stability in the Caucasus, adding that an environment has emerged to solve problems in the region through the format, which will include Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia and Georgia.

Gul’s remarks came following a town hall meeting with representatives from the Turkish community in New York and New Jersy on Saturday. In the meeting, hosted at “The Turkish House,” Gul called on the Turkish community in the United States to become more involved in US politics and support Turks seeking to enter politics and government.

Speaking on US-Turkish relations, Gul said that two countries had a significant level of cooperation and underlined importance of the contributions to that cooperation made by the Turkish community living in the United States.

The Turkish president said he believes that Turkish-Americans will become congressmen in the coming years. "The more successful you are and the better you are here, the better you represent Turkey," Gul said.

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