Armenian foreign minister set to visit Turkey for Erdoğan’s inauguration
According to media reports, Nalbandian will use the occasion to clarify whether Erdoğan will accept an invitation to take part in the official commemorations in Yerevan of the 100th anniversary of the mass killings of Armenians, that Turkey denies as genocide.Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian will attend President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s inauguration ceremony in Ankara on Aug. 28, according to the country’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Tigran Balayan.
According to Armenian media reports, Nalbandian will use the occasion to ask whether Erdoğan will accept an invitation to join next year’s official commemorations in Yerevan on the 100th anniversary of the Ottoman killings of Armenians, which Armenia and a number of other countries consider amounted to genocide.
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan recently congratulated Erdoğan upon his election as Turkey’s president, saying he is hopeful that Erdoğan will contribute to the establishment of bilateral relations between Armenia and Turkey “without any prerequisites.”
Nalbandian will be making only a brief visit to Ankara for the inauguration ceremony, and no bilateral meeting is planned at the moment, a Turkish diplomat told the Hürriyet Daily News.
Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu met with Nalbandian in 2013, in the first high-level visit from Turkey to Yerevan in five years, on the sidelines of a meeting of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC).
The meeting was seen as a step from the Turkish side for the restoration of diplomatic ties between Ankara and Yerevan, which have been at odds over the genocide claims and the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. However, the trip did not yield any concrete outcomes on the issue of normalization of ties between Ankara and Yerevan.
More than 20 heads of states and governments have announced their attendance to the official ceremony, during which outgoing President Abdullah Gül will hand over his office to Erdoğan.