‘Very Difficult’ for Turkey to Ratify Protocols, Says Key Parliament Leader

The Turkish Grand National Assembly

ANKARA—Citing a decision by Armenia’s Constitutional Court, which ruled in favor of the Armenia-Turkey protocols last month, the chairman of a key parliamentary commission of the Turkish parliament said Tuesday that it would be difficult for Turkey to ratify the protocols.

“I think it is very difficult for Turkey to ratify the protocols under these conditions because there is some level of uncertainty. There is no clarity about how the protocols will be interpreted. Without this clarity, we should not expect the Turkish Parliament to ratify the protocols. While there is a negative attitude regarding two critical factors from Turkey’s perspective, I don’t think it is likely for Turkey to accept just opening the borders,” said Turkish Parliament Foreign Affairs Commission Chairman Murat Mercan in an interview with Today’s Zaman.

Armenia’s Constitutional Court concluded that the protocols did not violate the constitution, adding that the normalization of relations with Turkey cannot be linked with a resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, nor impede Armenia from attaining international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, as stipulated in the Constitution.

Since this ruling, Turkey has accused Armenia of attaching preconditions to the ratification of the protocols, a move that has been rejected by Armenia and the United States.

“When we look at the Armenian constitutional court’s ruling, we see that there are clear provisions in the text stating how the protocols can and cannot be interpreted. After all, it is an agreement between two countries. It is not an international agreement. Only those countries that are party to an agreement are bound by that agreement,” said Mercan.

“At best there is uncertainty. In this kind of a situation, the conditions for implementing an international bilateral agreement are not completely clear. Take, for example, the issue of opening borders. The court’s decision clearly states that ‘opening the borders does not mean recognition of the Treaty of Kars,’” added Mercan.

The parliamentary leader also discussed another “uncertainty” emanating from NATO’s role in Afghanistan and Turkey role in the regional political reality. He immediately brought up the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

“There are two main problems in the Caucasus that directly concern Turkey. One of these is relations between Turkey and Armenia, and the other is solving the problems between Armenia and Azerbaijan. When we look at these two balances, if the ratification of the protocols between Turkey and Armenia is going to exacerbate problems between Armenia and Azerbaijan or severely jeopardize Azerbaijan’s national interest, then the world should not want it, either. In other words, it’s very important to maintain a balance,” explained Mercan.

“It’s important to clearly see what Armenia will gain if the border is opened, if diplomatic relations are established and if the problems between Armenia and Azerbaijan are solved,” he added. “The advantages that are obvious as of now are Armenia’s border to the international world will be opened, Armenia’s foreign trade will increase and Armenia will be added to the natural gas and oil pipeline routes originating from Azerbaijan.”

Mercan said all these changes “will significantly contribute to Armenia’s economy.”

He pointed to a conversation with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, where the latter “clearly told [him] that once problems were solved, good economic relations would be established between Armenia and Azerbaijan as well.” 

“Armenia is going to obtain a major advantage in terms of economy. On the other hand, Turkey will have made a certain level of progress on the recognition of its borders and on the genocide issue. If the problem is solved and Armenia withdraws from Azerbaijan’s territories, Armenia will not lose anything. That is because the international community sees Armenia as an occupier and does not approve of its occupation,” said Mercan.

“If this does not happen, in other words, if relations between Turkey and Armenia normalize but other balances are not considered, then the international community should be unhappy about this as it will become harder to solve the problems, and conditions that will most likely lead to conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan will develop. In other words, the risk the international community will face if the problem is not completely solved will be greater than the risk they currently face,” he stated. “Countries in the region, Europe, America and Russia should not want this possibility. It is for this reason that we should not look at the issue as one that only concerns Turkey and Armenia because this would be an incorrect point of view.”

“The failure to show the necessary level of caution and sensitivity could lead the countries mentioned above to sacrifice their own strategic interests and policies for domestic policies. A prudent person would realize the need for caution. Strategic interests should not be sacrificed,” added Mercan.


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  1. Nairian said:

    Recognize the Armenian Genocide NOW and give back the Wilsonian Armenia to Armenians!!!!!!

  2. Varto said:

    Mercan Said “the international community sees Armenia as an occupier and does not approve of its occupation,” said Mercan.
    Look @ The mirror Who is the real occupier of the Armenian Land – Turkey – isn’t it
    You call us occupier ??? we liberated our lands – those were ours to begin with along with the lands that Turkey stole from us.
    Read the History the real facts ……

  3. joe said:

    it’s are the same old CRIMINAL turk with a new “civilized” mask . nothing has changed.

  4. Berge Jololian said:

    Under international law, the normalization of relations between two countries can not depend on a third country. If country A (Turkey) wishes to normalize relations with country B (Armenia), the normalization can not be condition on relations with country Z (Azerbaijan).

    Under international law, if country A (Turkey) imposes a hostile border-blockade on country B (Armenia), it is considered an act of war. Did you ever wonder why the Russian Federation Army patrols the Armenian frontiers with Turkey?

    The US State Department is desperate to gain access to and control of the strategic central Asian gas & oil reserves of the Caspian basin; Turkmenistan’s gas, and Kazakhstan’s oil, along with Azerbaijan’s reserves.

    Turkey was once touted as the “energy corridor” between central Europe and central Asia; a conduit for the NABUCCO multiple pipeline project.

    The dream was chattered when Georgia was deemed unreliable and unstable by the US State Department and British Petroleum. The Russian invasion in August 8, 2008 sent a clear message to the US State Department that under no circumstance would it allow uncontrolled access to the world’s largest gas and oil reserves.

    Turkey and Azerbaijan are learning that blockades could be a double-edged sword; the US State Department cannot achieve penetration of the Caucasus; Turkey has no access to Central Asia. Azerbaijan is locked-out form the Western markets and forced to sell its oil & gas to the Russian Federation.

    Closed borders give Armenia power and leverage over Turkey and US State Department interests. Let’s discuss: Genocide (US State Department apology goes before Turkey’s acknowledgment), Reparation, Restitution and Land.

    • jerry sabounjian said:

      Then why Turkey continues to give this leverage to Armenia by not approving the protoco

    • KRIKOR said:

      well said, but the majority of Armenians dont understand politics and reality, and whats behind things, Armenians usually and unfortunately dont see more than one feet ahead and cant read between the lins and dont realise the reality and think imotioanly.

  5. grigor markaryan said:

    Armenia’s Constitutional Court has said what it needs to be said and it is too bad if Turkey does not like it.

  6. Alex A. Manukian said:

    “When we look at the Armenian constitutional court’s ruling, we see that there are clear provisions in the text stating how the protocols can and cannot be interpreted. After all, it is an agreement between two countries. It is not an international agreement. Only those countries that are party to an agreement are bound by that agreement,” said Mercan.

    Then he states the Azeri problem. How can you be a politician, your a dumb ass hypocrite. Unless you think that Azerbajan is Turkish too.

    I agree with all of you, not because I’m Armenian, but because of Kosovo, Abxazia, South Ossetia and many more example that people earned independence through peaceful and military action. Those Turkic Muslim killed Armenian thorough time, never let us have freedom, and they expected us never to fight back…

    We are working around the world with dreams of going back to our ancestral homeland, and take our land by force, because it will not happen any other way. Diplomacy is another way of procasinating WAR. With Russian and US on our side, and some EU members we can do it, and we will in the next 50 years.

    On the Genocide, even if the whole world recognized the Armenian Genocide the turks will never give those lands back, why? It’s simple they are turks. They don’t reason, they tell you how the world should operate, in their minds. But if cornered they will attack with full force of ISLAM… They have done it in the past, and they have never changed.

  7. Frank said:

    Remeber Turks destroyed our doucments so that we would not be able to get back to our land .
    We have ways of tracing the ownership of these lands
    We are coming back to Kayseri.