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Turkey, Armenia agree to normalising ties without preconditions – Ahval News

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« Special representatives from Turkey and Armenia have agreed to proceed with the normalisation of bilateral relations without preconditions, the Duvar news website reported on Tuesday citing the Turkish Foreign Ministry » says Ahval News.

The two sides held “cordial and productive” talks in Vienna and addressed “steps for concrete progress in talks,” the Foreign Ministry said.

Turkish and Armenian envoys have held two rounds of exploratory talks this year,  one in Moscow, Russia on Jan. 14 and the other in Vienna, Austria on Feb. 24, aimed at normalising diplomatic relations frozen for almost three decades.

The talks are aimed at re-establishing diplomatic relations and reopening a border between the two countries. The talks are the first serious effort to restore ties since a 2009 peace accord that was never ratified. 

The governments of the two countries have been at odds on numerous issues, including the killing of 1.5 million Armenians on Turkish soil in 1915. Turkey does not recognise the murders as constituting genocide despite widespread international recognition. 

Turkey also backed Armenia’s rival Azerbaijan in the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war, in which Armenia lost large swathes of the disputed enclave. 

Armenia’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday said that « the special representatives confirmed the purpose of achieving full-scale normalisation of relations between their countries,” the Russian TASS news agency reported.

“They (the special representatives) confirmed their intention to continue this process without preconditions, » it said.

Armenia handed back territories in Nagorno-Karabakh to Azerbaijan as part of a truce agreement signed by the warring sides in November 2020 following six weeks of clashes. Turkey provided military hardware and know-how to Azerbaijan in the conflict.

Turkey has pressured Armenia to allow land access for the transportation of Turkish and Azerbaijani goods through its territory since the end of the war.

Ahval News, May 3, 2022

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