Tense Phone Call Between Nalbandian and Davutoglu

Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu shake hands after signing the Turkish-Armenian Protocols on Oct. 10, 2009

YEREVAN—The foreign ministers of Armenia and Turkey had what appeared to be a tense phone conversation Wednesday that further dimmed prospects for the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations, reported Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

The conversation, initiated by Armenia’s Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian, was in response to Tuesday’s Turkish Foreign Ministry statement, which claimed that last week’s Constitutional Court ruling on the Armenia-Turkey protocols placed “preconditions and restrictive provisions which impair the letter and spirit of the Protocols.”

Nalbandian was quick to respond Tuesday, pledging a phone call to his counterpart to express “bewilderment” of the Turkish position, since from the onset of the normalization process, Turkey has imposed preconditions saying that the process would not move forward without a Karabakh peace deal that favors Azerbaijan.

According to the Armenian Foreign Ministry, Nalbandian told Davutoglu that such statements are “creating the impression of a search for artificial pretexts” for Turkey’s refusal to establish diplomatic relations and open its border with Armenia, reported RFE/RL.

A ministry statement said he urged the Turks to stick to “the letter and spirit of the protocols” and “move forward fast.” It said Nalbandian insisted that the Constitutional Court ruling only testifies to the Armenian side’s desire to have them implemented “without undue delays.”

Davutoglu stood by this claim during the phone call with his Armenian counterpart. A Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman was reported to say that Davutoglu also claimed that the ratification process is at a far more advanced stage in Turkey than in Armenia, reported RFE/RL.

On January 12, Armenia’s high Court ruled that the agreements were in line with the country’s Constitution. The Court also said that the protocols could not have any bearing with the ongoing Karabakh peace process nor should they impede the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide. To reinforce the latter point, the court cited Article 11 of Armenia’s 1990 Declaration of Independence which states: “The Republic of Armenia stands in support of the task of achieving international recognition of the 1915 Genocide in Ottoman Turkey and Western Armenia.”

Despite Turkey’s claims to the contrary, the Turkish Foreign Ministry statement aims to further Ankara’s preconditions on the protocols and find an escape route from its commitments in the international community, Armenian Revolutionary Federation Political Affairs Director Giro Manoyan told a press conference in Yerevan Wednesday.

“The decision of the Armenian Constitutional Court and the subsequent statement by the Turkish Foreign Ministry will lead to new developments,” said Manoyan who did not rule out the possibility of phone calls to Armenia’s leadership by the Secretary of State or the Vice-President to “secure assurances.”

He also presumed that Turkey may take action toward ratification of the Protocols in March-April 2010. “If Turkey drags out the process, Armenia will have to say it quits negotiations.”

Manoyan asserted that the Constitutional Court could have used the same provisions to rule the protocols unconstitutional, adding that the points outlined by the Court could serve as a basis for the parliament to not ratify the documents.

The ARF leader said that the party’s parliamentary faction was prepared to introduce legislation, which would require the inclusion of the Court’s rationale in the wording of the protocols.

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12 Comments

  1. Papken Hartunian said:

    “Manoyan asserted that the Constitutional Court could have used the same provisions to rule the protocols unconstitutional, adding that the points outlined by the Court could serve as a basis for the parliament to not ratify the documents.”
    Mr. Manoyan assertion is to the point.  Since the Constitutional Court has failed to apply the rule of the Constitution to its conclusion, such decision is unconstitutional. Therefore, one can legally argue that the Constitutional Court has rejected the constitutionality of the protocols indirectly.
    Our friends in homeland must raise the issue of the unconstitutionality of the decision. I honestly believe that the protocols are dead. We are preparing for their funerals.

    • Harout said:

      What I understand is the court realized it’s “UNCONSTITUTIONAL”  based on Armenia’s constitution! Instead declared it is acceptable in limited way!  Then this means who ever will approve and vote for this protocol as a whole, then each “yay” voter will be committing “TREASON”.
       

      • Papken Hartunian said:

        Harout, I agree with your view. However, the fact that the Constitutional Court has failed to recite the article 11 of the Declaration of the Independence of Armenia and other provisions of the Constitution, suggests that it was under pressure of the executive branch. I think, the reason is the section 11 include the G-word. If this is true, then the Court is not independent branch of the Republic. which contradicts the requirements of the Constitution. Therefore, the decision of such Court is unconstitutional.  In my book, all Justices of the Constitution already have committed “TREASON.”

        • Harout said:

          Then to “SAVE the Armenian Nation”  Armenian People should “SACRIFICE few hundred TRAITORS”

  2. Nairian said:

    Papken Harutunian, let us prepare the funeral of the protocols.  I will gladly write the ulogy and I will sing a song at the funeral.

  3. Haro Mherian, Ph.D. Mathematics, UCLA said:

    This sounds like the same trap as the Genocide Recognition (i.e. saying the word “G”-trap). The only difference is that the diplomacy evolution has gone backwards 80 years. Now, we are debating whether Ratification means Rat-ifixation or Raty-fictation. I hope we won’t spend another 95 years on this senseless issue.

  4. Ishkhan said:

    Parunner  Sargsyan/Nalbandyan
    Shat  Zarmanali  e  vor  duk    aydkan  nsemanak   yev   Turkin    aghachek
    Toghek   Protocole    JAHANAME     ghna   irenk   el    hete

  5. Armenak Petrosyan said:

    Let the death of idiotic and humiliating for Armenia protocols, the imposition of which both Serjik and his foreign minister had no guts to oppose, serve a good lesson to the current and future generations of Armenian leaders that, no matter what, it is the PEOPLE both in Armenia and the Diaspora, and not a bunch of unelected, unrepresetative, unpopular, corrupt and subservient rulers, who will decide the destiny of their Homeland.
    Rest In Oblivion, protocols…
     

  6. Kiazer Souze said:

    You have Sarkisian saying`that the rrotocols call out for a commision to establish dialogue and repirations etc…and not to debate the issue of Genocide. You have the Turks saying that the protocols call out for a historical commission to debate the issues of Genocide.

    The Court has essentialy said, it is vague, but, that the Turkish version would conflict with the Armenian constitution, the declaration of independance. However, if Sarkisian’s interpretations of what the protocols call out for are the ones intented by the parties, the Court said then it would be Constittutional.

    Moreover, I have never heard of a nonsignatory, Artsagh, ever being bound to protocols as it is a third party.

    I’m sure the Turks knew this all along and they were trying to see the desparation of Armenia.

    Come April 24, 2010, we will see whether president Obama will betray us once again and weasil out of his promises.

  7. Kiazer Souze said:

    Send Hillary a cigar with a note that says “We told you so but you didn’t want to listen.” Here, smoke this.

    If you don’t put pressure to have the Armenian Genocide recognized by this year, you and everyone else (whether democrats or republicans) are going to pay a heavy political price.

  8. Samvel Grigoryan said:

    Given these typically Turkish, i.e. cheap and easily detectable, political maneuvering with these hastily-cooked protocols, I think the time is nearing that Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) be recognized as an independent entity, first by Armenia, then by Russia, and then by the rest of the international community. I also think that given the fact that Turkey will never change from being a Genocide-denier, fascist state with sick pan-Turkist ambitions, in April of 2010 the U.S. President MUST, as he promised to the world, use the Genocide word in his Annual  Address to the Armenian People, a long-expected word that would adequately characterize the barbarism, humiliation and unspeakable pain that Turks have inflicted upon millions of Armenians, depriving them of their historical homeland in Western Armenia and systematically slaughtering and deporting en masse its inhabitants. Enough is enough!

  9. arman said:

    turks can not be trusted, reliable at all. I think the history showed that once again. My grandfather had a brilliant saying: A GOOD TURK IS THE DEAD TURK. that’s all

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