Thursday, February 08, 2007

Bryza: Yerevan and Ankara cannot reach reconciliation via political decisions


/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Political or diplomatic statements are not proper to solve the problem of determining the tragic events of 1915, stated U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, OSCE MG Co-Chair Matthew Bryza to journalists on the eve of Turkish foreign Minister’s visit to Washington. He assured that “we all are united in the opinion that the events in 1915 are terrible tragic.” “It is horrible. But this problem has so much sides and there are a lot of views on this problem that political leaders cannot provide justice just giving it a determination. We’d like educated people, professors, philosophers, historians to be given possibility to carry out positive and impartial discussions on the causes of what happened, which will allow Armenian and Turkish communities to reconcile with their past and with each other. You cannot reach it via political decisions,” Matthew Bryza stated, adding, “We’d also like to see Armenian-Turkish relations improved.” “As a CO-Chair of OSCE MG I understand how much it is difficult. I realize the role of Nagorno Karabakh in this problem very strongly. Despite it, we’d like to see corresponding steps aimed at improving relations between Armenia and Turkey, since it proceeds from interests of all sides. It proceeds from interests of Turkish businessmen, it is also a good chance for long term regional stability and peace. But I realize how all this is difficult,” the American diplomat stressed.

Speaking on possible steps of improving Armenian-Turkish relations Matthew Bryza reminded that Armenian and Turkish governments “speak about historic commissions and diplomatic debates.” After Hrant Dink’s tragic murder discussions over 301st article of Turkish Penal Code got more intensive character. We understand that it is difficult for the Turkish government to declare invalid this article because of political realities. But it would be fine if the issue of 301st article would be removed from the agenda, since it allows to condemn Turkey. We are friends for Turkey. We hope Turkey considers us as one of the closest friends in the world. And we want to do everything possible to assist traditions of tolerance and co-existence of all ethnic and religious communities in Turkey. 301st article yet hampers this problem. It has magnetic influence on Europe’s mentality and makes everyone concentrate on that problem and not on the whole Turkish history,” stated Mathew Bryza, Mediamax reports.

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Note: Above are excerpts from the article. The full article appears here. Clarifications and comments by me are contained in {}. Deletions are marked by [...]. The bold emphasis is mine.



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