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Historic Turkey - Armenia agreement

the understanding preludes to the opening of borders

Signature in Zurich of the protocol aiming at normalizing the diplomatic ties between the two Countries after years of chill.
The ceremony, besides those of the signatory Countries, Turkish Ahmet Davutoglu and Armenian Edward Nabandian, enjoyed the contributions of the High EU Foreign Policy Representative Javier Solana, the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey, Serghei Lavrov and Bernard Kouchner, respectively the Russian and the French Foreign Minister.
The diplomatic ties between the two Countries had been interrupted because of the lack of recognition of the Armenian genocide on the side of Turkey and of the breakaway of Nagorno Karabakh in Azerbaijian. In this conflict Ankara supported the Azerbaijans by shutting its frontiers to the Armenians since 1993.
The diplomatic meeting ended with the signature of the protocol, occurred some hours late. In order for the agreement to be valid, the ratification by the two Parliaments is now required.

Declaration of Milan's Armenian Honorary Consul

"For nearly a century, Armenians and Turks had become accostumed to considering as normal a situation which has few other examples in the world: the lack of diplomatic ties between two Countries which have a long frontier in common and are not at war. The signature of the protocols establishing and developing diplomatic ties between the two Countries is a historic event. It opens up a possibility for change that entails some risks but also the willingness to renew oneself. One reached the signature through a vexed path: the Armenians have mountains of suffering behind their shoulders. A situation stuck in the hearts and souls has been broken. Now there will be the true difficulties, building a relationship of good neighbourhood with rules that have, yet to be established. All Armenians in the home Country and in the diaspora consent to open to the Turks, but they are divided on the conditions required by this agreement. The meeting between the two Foreign Ministers lasted for more than it had been foreseen because of the difficulty to reach an understanding on the final resolution and this is there to point out that the complete implementation of the Road Map will not be an easily attainable goal."

After the signature of the Protocols a debate opened within the Armenian community

the Yes front

Historian Tarek Akcam interviewed by Armenews, in French

the No front
The Armenian opposition parties

12 October 2009

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Metz Yeghern

the genocide of the Armenians

In the framework of first world war (1914-1918), in the area of the Ottoman Empire, in Turkey, we witness the unfolding of the genocide of the Armenian people (1915 – 1923), the first of the Twentieth century. Through it the government of the "Young Turks", which seized power in 1908, carried out the elimination of the Armenian ethnic group, which has inhabited the Anatolic area since the Seventh century b.C..
In the memory of the Armenian people, and also according to the historian's estimates, two thirds of the Armenians of the Ottoman Empire, nearly 1,500,000 people, perished. Many were the children forced to convert to Islam and the women sent to the harems. The deportation and extermination of 1915 were preceded by the pogroms of 1894-96 planned by Sultan Abdul Hamid II and by those of 1909 carried out by the government of the "Young Turks".

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