28 Feb 2019 10:52

Turkey's Karabakh stance hampers normalization of Armenia-Turkey relations - Pashinyan

YEREVAN. Feb 28 (Interfax) - The Turkish authorities' stance leaves no chance for any serious discussions on normalizing Armenian-Turkish relations, Armenia's Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said.

"Turkey is continuing to tie bilateral agreements to Karabakh-Armenia-Azerbaijan relations. As long as the situation remains as it is today, we can't have any grounds for optimism, even though we say that we stand ready to discuss these relations without preliminary conditions. But Turkey puts forth a preliminary condition linked with Karabakh," Pashinyan said at a meeting with members of the Armenian community in Tehran on Wednesday.

"So, this position does not leave any opportunity for serious discussions on Armenian-Turkish relations," he said.

Recognition of the Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire in 1915 is "extremely important" for Armenia, but it is not a preliminary condition, Pashinyan said.

"A question may arise - is it a preliminary condition when we speak about recognition of the genocide? Fighting against genocide is a matter of the global security agenda. We will continue working to secure recognition of the Armenian genocide," he said.