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Turkey-Armenia and Azerbaijan: possible developments

By Messenger Staff
Monday, September 7
Russian political analyst Sergey Markedonov has stated that if the Armenian and Turkish Parliaments ratify protocols on establishing and normalising diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey this would become the most important issue in the region since the August war of 2008. Markedonov thinks that it is very important that these protocols are ratified as only after this will serious further developments be possible. If the Turkish-Armenian border is opened it will considerably change relations within the Baku-Yerevan-Ankara triangle. Russia will also be affected, as questions will arise about the functioning of the Russian military base in Gumri, Armenia.

Markedonov thinks that if the borders open the Karabakh problem will be treated as a separate issue from normalising Armenian-Turkish relations. Although so far Baku and Ankara’s positions have coincided their national interests are obviously not the same. Turkey has more ambition as it is trying to establish itself as a major player in Caucasus affairs.

On August 31 Yerevan and Ankara decided to begin bilateral political consultations brokered by Switzerland over two protocols, one on establishing diplomatic relations and another on developing bilateral relations. This process will possibly take around a month and a half. The agreed protocols will then be signed and sent for ratification by the Parliaments of both states, eventually leading to the Turkish-Armenian border opening and diplomatic relations being resumed.