“Azg” reports that the Supreme Spiritual Council of the Armenian Apostolic Church has welcomed the Armenian government’s efforts to normalize relations with Turkey. In a statement, the council said that the Armenian genocide and the Karabakh people’s right to self-determination are an “undisputed reality.” “Our people and national government will never stop defending and asserting our legitimate national rights,” said the statement.
Former Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian tells “Haykakan Zhamanak” that the fact that both the Armenian authorities and the opposition criticized his latest statements on Turkish-Armenian relations and domestic issues means at least some of what he said is true. “If there is a popular wave [of protests] aimed at halting the Turkish-Armenian protocols, I will certainly join in,” he says. When pressed by the paper on whether he will do so if that movement is led by Levon Ter-Petrosian, Oskanian replies: “Let anyone do it. If there is a campaign on this issue I will definitely join it.”
“Common sense suggests that in this situation Serzh Sarkisian’s main ally should have been the Armenian National Congress (HAK),” writes “Chorrord Ishkhanutyun.” “So why is it that Serzh Sarkisian is waging a fierce battle against ultranationalist forces but is not only not daring to cooperate with his sole natural ally but is actually fighting against it in the first instance?” Because, says the paper, the HAK believes that only a legitimately elected president of Armenia would have the mandate to make peace with Turkey. It says Sarkisian’s resignation and his endorsement of Ter-Petrosian’s candidacy in a snap presidential election would be the “only logical outcome” of negotiations between the two forces.
Cem Toker, the leader of the Liberal-Democratic Party of Turkey, tells “Aravot” that although the Turkish-Armenian protocols contain many ambiguous provisions they can serve as the basis of the normalization of bilateral relations. He says many in Turkey are worried that Armenia will still avoid recognizing its border with Turkey and continue to support international recognition of the Armenian genocide. “Such objections stem from a lack of trust on both sides,” adds Toker. “The establishment of mutual trust is another problem we should start working on.”