By Emil Danielyan
Leaders of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutyun) sounded on Wednesday unconvinced by Yerevan’s assurances that it was not involved in the creation of the private Turkish-Armenian reconciliation commission. In a statement issued after a meeting with Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian, members of the nationalist party’s worldwide governing “bureau” said the government has still to clarify its position on the initiative condemned by Dashnaktsutyun.
The statement quoted a senior bureau member, Vahan Hovannisian, as insisting that the government was involved in the commission and must “announce clearly and explicitly its position on that initiative.”
Oskanian repeated the previous day that his ministry was informed about but did not take part in secret negotiations between former Turkish and Armenian government officials that led to the formation of the panel, described by a retired Turkish diplomat as a turning point in relations between the two peoples.
The Dashnaks are fiercely opposed to the reconciliation effort, regarding it as a ploy by Ankara to undermine the Armenian campaign for international recognition of the 1915 genocide of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire.