Turkey will respond positively ‘if Armenia abandons hostile attitude,’ says Yıldırım
Turkey is ready to respond accordingly if Armenia wants to open new page in ties, but Yerevan first has to abandon its “hostile attitude” regarding the border issue, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has said.
“If Armenia gives up its hostile attitude, which it has shown for years against Turkey, if gives up its wrong attitude against Turkey’s territorial integrity and borders, if wants to opens a new page then we will respond accordingly after looking at the details,” Yıldırım told reporters on May 11.
“We do not want to be hostile to anybody, especially our neighbors. If such an approach is taken, we will naturally evaluate it in the interests of our country,” he said, adding that the government’s principle is “to increase friendships and diminish hostility.”
Armenia’s new Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on May 9 said his country is ready to establish diplomatic ties with Turkey “without preconditions.”
“Turkey is putting forward preconditions. This demand is illogical because it is illogical to put forward conditions related to a third country in order to establish relations with any country. We do not change our position and we are ready to establish relations without conditions. At the same time, we remain committed to international recognition of the Armenian genocide,” Pashinyan said.
Armenia and Turkey signed a landmark peace accord in October 2009 to restore ties and open their shared border after a century. However, the protocols have since then not been ratified, and Armenia finally scrapped the agreement on March 1.
Armenia suspended its ratification following Turkish demands that it first reaches terms over a breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh region, a condition that Turkey set to appease its ally Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan feared that it would lose leverage in negotiations to win back Nagorno-Karabakh, which it lost to Armenian-backed forces in the bloodiest of the ethnic conflicts which followed the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.