Davutoglu Stresses Karabakh Link at OSCE Summit

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Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.

ATHENS (RFE/RL)—Addressing the OSCE ministerial council in Athens on Wednesday, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu stressed the importance of a Nagorno-Karabakh settlement acceptable to Azerbaijan for the normalization of his country’s relations with Armenia.

He spoke instead about international efforts to broker a solution to the Karabakh dispute. Respect for Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity “must constitute the bedrock” of such a solution, he said.

“Turkey is of the view that efforts aimed at the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the creation of an environment of durable peace and stability in the region are mutually reinforcing and have a direct impact on one another. The two processes cannot be seen in isolation,” Davutoglu added in a clear reference to Ankara’s demands on Yerevan to make heavy concessions in the Karabakh conflict for normal relations with Turkey.

Davutoglu and his Armenian counterpart, Edward Nalbandian, held talks on the sidelines of the OSCE meeting late Tuesday. Official Armenian and Turkish sources said the talks focused on the implementation of the recently signed protocols envisaging the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two states and the reopening of their border.

The official Turkish Anatolia news agency said the Karabakh issue was also on the agenda, a claim denied by Nalbandian. “We didn’t discuss the Karabakh issue,” he told journalists on Wednesday.

In a speech at the forum earlier in the day, Nalbandian warned Ankara against delaying the mandatory parliamentary ratification of the protocols. “Unjustified delays and preconditions, including a drive to link the issue with the Karabakh conflict, can harm both processes,” he said.

President Serzh Sarkisian issued a similar warning over the weekend. He implied that Yerevan could walk away from the agreements if Ankara fails to implement them within a “reasonable time frame.”

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7 Comments

  1. Aram Suren Hamparian (ANCA) said:

    Let’s look at the balance sheet:

    The Protocols deliver two major preconditions for Turkey (commission and borders). In return, Turkey dodges U.S. recognition of the Genocide, promotes its undeserved international standing as a peacemaker, AND gets powerful new geo-political leverage that it’s aggressively using to secure its third precondition (a pro-Azerbaijani settlement of the NK conflict).

    One side here is playing chess, the other checkers.

  2. Dikran Sassounian said:

    Either Sarkisian walks away from the Protocols or he should be thrown out of the Presidency!

  3. roni said:

    Ahmet Davutoglu  can say whatever he likes because  he has sloved all his issues with the Armenian government now the the Armenians should withdrew from the Armenian lands .

  4. John said:

    Now that the so-called rapprochement process has begun, whether one likes it or not, the least the Armenian side can do is force Turkey’s hand by giving a fixed date instead of the politically elastic “reasonable delay” nonsense, which can be interpreted in many ways. An ultimatum might corner the Turks into a wrong move by not ratifying the protocols. Although this is a wishful thinking because the Turks got exactly what they wanted from Armenia, when the time comes they will (gladly) ratify the protocols, regardless what happens in Artsakh negotiations. The Turks, fresh from winning the political game with Armenia, are simply pushing the envelop for gaining further concessions, that’s all, and why shouldn’t they, having dealt with such weaklings as Sarkisian and Nalbandian they feel that the threat of not opening the borders is enough to gain some more concessions, this time in Artsakh. This attitude is basic human greed played on larger scale. In our  personal lives we play this game every day, we look for deals in buying cars or houses, run to get great deals when a firm declares bankruptcy with signs that say “90% off”. Armenian leadership being as bankrupt as they are have created a lot of opportunities for the Turks and the West for bargain hunting. No wonder a permanent smile is etched on Davutoglu’s face.

  5. Armanen said:

    Aram:

    More like both parties think they are playing a game but really the moves are being made by the Great Powers.

  6. Frank said:

    We cant see eye to eye with these people. We do try and we are not unreasonable.
    They have taken away most of what we have and still that is not enough for the Turks and Azerbaijan.
    The only thing I will say to the Turks is that the old days are gone we live in a new era of diplomacy.
     

  7. Grish Begian said:

    Turks play Ottoman’s music for the West, they love to keep Armenia hostage, in order to gain Europeans attention regards their admittance into EU. Even if they solve Artsakh problem they will find something else to play with Armenians. I believe that Europeans know the Turkish game, therefore Europe will keep today’s situation the way it is for a long time, unless Turks  change their aggressive policy toward Armenians…

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