Turkish and Armenian officials held the first round of the negotiations in Moscow on January 14. The foreign ministries of the two neighboring nations described the talks as “positive and constructive.”
They said special envoys representing the two sides agreed to continue the dialogue “without preconditions.” It is still not clear when they will meet again.
“I must say that the first meeting didn’t address many substantive issues, but there are some positive signs that the process will unfold successfully,” Mirzoyan said after holding talks in Yerevan with Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg.
“But again, these are issues which don’t depend only on the position of one side,” he told a joint news conference.
The minister insisted that just like its predecessors, the current Armenian government stands for normalizing bilateral ties “without preconditions.” “It is with these expectations that we embarked on this dialogue,” he stressed.
Mirzoyan complained as recently as in November that the Turks are setting “new preconditions” for establishing diplomatic relations and opening their border with Armenia. He alluded to their statements making the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations conditional on Armenia agreeing to open a land corridor that would connect Azerbaijan to its Nakhichevan exclave.
Turkish leaders have also cited Baku’s demands for a formal Armenian recognition of Azerbaijani sovereignty over Nagorno-Karabakh.
Armenian opposition leaders have accused Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian of being ready to accept these demands. Pashinian’s political allies have denied that.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has repeatedly made clear that Ankara will continue to coordinate its Armenian policy with Baku.
Cavusoglu announced two weeks ago that he has invited Mirzoyan to an international conference that will be held in Turkey in March. Pashinian signaled last week that Yerevan will likely accept the invitation.
Mirzoyan likewise said that he has “no problem” with attending the Antalya Diplomacy Forum organized by the Turkish government. But he also cautioned: “The Armenian Foreign Ministry has made no decision on this yet. The issue is being discussed.”