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Armenian President Withdraws Protocols On Relations With Turkey


Foreign Ministers Eduard Nalbandian of Armenia (L) and Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey sign landmark agreements to normalize Turkish-Armenian relations in Zurich. October 10, 2009.

Foreign Ministers Eduard Nalbandian of Armenia (L) and Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey sign landmark agreements to normalize Turkish-Armenian relations in Zurich. October 10, 2009.

Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian has recalled from parliament protocols on the normalization of ties and the establishment of diplomatic relations with neighboring Turkey.

In a statement issued on Monday, Sarkisian said he had asked Parliament Speaker Galust Sahakian to return the protocol to him since “the Turkish government has no political will, distorts the spirit and letter of the protocols, and continues its policy of setting preconditions.”

Sarkisian also said that on the eve of commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey during World War I, “the policy of denial and rewriting history” is getting a renewed impulse in Ankara.

Relations between Turkey and Armenia have been strained for years over their differing accounts of mass killings of Armenians.

The protocols to normalize Yerevan-Ankara ties were signed in Zurich on October 10, 2009.

A number of opposition parties in Armenia have long advocated the withdrawal of the Turkey-Armenia protocols from the parliament agenda, considering them to be a failure as well as an obstacle to Armenia’s stronger push for the international recognition of the Ottoman-era genocide.

Giro Manoyan, a chief foreign policy spokesman for the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, welcomed President Sarkisian’s move, but said it was not enough.

“This is only the withdrawal of the protocols from the National Assembly agenda, but we deem that it is necessary to recall Armenia’s signature from the protocols for them not to exist legally anymore,” he said.

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