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    Turkey's Caucasus platform demands an "open game"

    HotNewsTurkey Staff
    06 Ekim 2008 - 15:14Son Güncelleme : 06 Ekim 2008 - 15:33

    Turkey's proposal to form the Caucasus Stability and Cooperation Platform demands an "open game", an Armenian website quoted a Russian expert as saying.

    "As a rule, cooperation becomes possible if the sides waive their national interests to combat a common enemy or if there is a necessity of diversification of economic relations. Under the global financial and energy crisis, the Caucasus states could reach an agreement to resolve the existing conflicts and secure beneficial economic cooperation," senior lecturer at Saint-Petersburg State University and deputy editor at the Center of Oriental Studies, Alexander Sotnichenko said in an interview with PanARMENIAN.Net.

     

    Turkey proposed to set up a platform for cooperation and stability in the Caucasus to help the resolution of conflicts through dialogue after the Russia-Georgia conflict in August. 
     
    Turkey, Russia, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan, the countries planned to take part in this formation had voiced optimism. However, the possibility of the proposal has been questioned by some analysts, as the region continues to play host a number of conflicts, especially between Russia and Georgia, Azerbaijan-Armenia and Turkey-Armenia.

     

    "However, there are some irrational historical factors that hamper the normalization of relations," Sotnichenko added.

     

    Armenia could officially renounce territorial claims against Turkey and stop the worldwide campaign calling for recognition of "genocide", he said. In response, Turkey could reconsider its position on Nagorno-Karabakh and open the border with Armenia, he said.

     

    There is no diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey, as Armenia presses the international community to admit the so-called "genocide" claims instead of accepting Turkey's call to investigate the allegations, and its invasion of 20 percent of Azerbaijani territory despite U.N. Security Council resolutions on the issue.

     

    Since 1992, Armenian Armed Forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and its seven surrounding districts. Some 10 percent of the Azeri population was displaced due to a series of bloody clashes both between and within the two neighboring countries.

     

    "A similar precedent was in case with Syria. As soon as Damascus recognized the territorial integrity of Turkey and stopped laying claims to the province of Hatay that was annexed to Turkey in 1838, the relations between the two states considerably improved, not to mention the economic factor," Sotnichenko also said.

     

    "I am hopeful that the Caucasus nations will overcome their historic hostility and establish fruitful political and economic cooperation," he added.

     

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