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EU, Turkey and Armenia
Ruben Safrastyan (Armenia)
The EU-Turkey relations are important for Armenia, because the European integration was declared as one of the basic strategic goals of our country. In addition, many Armenians hope that the European Union would exert pressure on Turkey during the talks to give up its "policy of coercion" with regard to Armenia, to open the border with Armenia and recognize the Genocide of Armenians.
The interests of Armenia, taking into account the above, require that Turkey should recognize the Genocide, open the border with Armenia, and in general, give up its "policy of coercion" and hold the course of normalization of relations with Armenia – all that to be done before Turkey’s accession to the EU.
However, the framework document, defining the course of the talks EU–Turkey, lacks any point, having direct reference to Armenia. Only the provision, requiring from Turkey to settle relations with its neighbor, can have some importance from that point of view. Using it, the European Union can demand that Turkey start normalizing its relations with Armenia.
It seems that Armenian and EU interests on Turkey coincide. Moreover, indeed, the leaders of the EU member states, representatives of many international structures, have made many appropriate statements: the European Parliament adopted resolutions, condemning Turkey.
For instance, in 1987, the European Parliament passed the resolution on the "Political Solution to the Armenian Issue", in which the tragic events of 1915–1917 on the territory of the Ottoman Empire, which targeted the Armenian population, are qualified as genocide. The same Resolution calls upon the European Council to exert pressure on the Turkish Government in order for it to recognize the Genocide.
The internationalization of the Genocide factor is being accomplished on two levels. In the realm of Realpolitik, it is being used by influential political circles in for their own gain – as an additional vehicle to put pressure on Turkey. At the same time, it has already been adopted by global discourse on the problems of genocide and other crimes against humanity. Armenia's interaction with European countries of Realpolitik strengthens its overall position in the world and, particularly, its relations with Turkey. The active participation in the above discourse enhances Armenia's authority in the world.