Armenia does not see much progress in the negotiation process with Ankara, Armenia’s special envoy for talks to normalize relations with Turkey, Ruben Rubinyan, told reporters at the National Assembly Thursday.
“Since the beginning of the process, Armenia has been very constructive,” Rubinyan added. “Armenia has the political will, and the success of this process depends on whether Turkey has the political will. As you can see, up to this point there has not been much progress.”
Rubinyan explained that there is no specific document on the table and reiterated that there is no issue of “re-delimitation” of borders on the agenda.
Rubinyan, who is also a deputy speaker of parliament, noted that Ankara’s proposal to hold one of the meetings in Yerevan implies that “our Turkish colleagues consider the process to be two-sided.”
“But in this context, the statements of some Turkish officials that they coordinate or have coordinated the process with Azerbaijan are a bit strange. But I repeat that the main thing in the process is political will, if there is a will, the rest is easy to solve,” Rubinyan stated.
He added that the lack of progress so far does not mean there cannot be any in the future.
He and Serdar Kilic, Turkey’s special envoy for the talks, are scheduled to meet on Friday in Vienna.
Rubinyan also address questions regarding the so-called “Zangezur Corridor.” Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, last week, said that Ankara was anticipating for the opening of the “corridor”—a scheme being advanced by Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, who wants a land route to connect mainland Azerbaijan with Nakhichevan.
“These statements in no way contribute to the Armenia-Turkey normalization process, perhaps, they have the opposite effect—they hinder that process,” Rubinyan said in response to a question about Cavusoglu’s and other Turkish officials statements.
“There is no term ‘Zangezur corridor’ on our agenda. Armenia has not discussed it, is not discussing it and will not discuss any project in a corridor logic,” emphasized Rubinyan.
Armenia’s National Security Chief Armen Grigoryan also stressed that such a “corridor” is not part of Armenia’s policy agenda, adding that any road going through Armenia that is deemed to be a “corridor” is ruled out.
“This is our policy: when we announce that our positions are closer, it means we moved forward with the logic that there will be a border control. Any road with ‘corridor’ logic is ruled out in Armenia,” Grigoryan said at Thursday’s cabinet meeting.
He informed that the topic of opening transit routes between Armenia and Azerbaijan has been discussed both in Moscow and Brussels.
“For a long time Azerbaijan has been stating that a corridor is being discussed. If I am not mistaken, on November 6, when Russian Deputy Prime Minister [Alexey] Overchuk was in Yerevan, he announced that no issue with corridor logic is being discussed. The same happened after the Brussels talks. The spokesperson to [Charles] Michel publicly stated that no corridor has ever been discussed. This shows that our approach in the negotiations has been this and continues to be this,” Grigoryan explained.