TODAY.AZ / Analytics

Armenia-Turkey protocols are being annulled: Turkey-Armenia dialogue failed

12 February 2010 [15:46] - TODAY.AZ
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu recently announced a de facto cancellation of the Armenian-Turkish protocols. His statements give reason to say that Ankara just yesterday lost faith in Yerevan’s sincerity and decided to no longer delay time. It is noteworthy that Davutoglu spoke abut this issue twice – before the Armenian president’s flight over Turkey, when the latter had sent greetings to Ankara, and after Serzh Sargsyan landed in London.

Sargsyan was flying to the West, so his move was twofold. On the one hand, the Armenian president acted in a manner unusual for him and on the other hand he called on Turkey to further dialogue in a civil way harboring his grudge.

It is hard to blame Turkey for achieving real breakthroughs in foreign policy, although the country’s foreign policy line has underwent substantial changes in recent years. Turkey has a kind of empirical track record based on trial and error. The country has made efforts to achieve a breakthrough in terms of international recognition of the Northern Cyprus, EU accession and establishing a platform of stability in the Caucasus, and starting a Iran-West dialogue before the war in Iraq and at a time of a raging Middle East crisis. It is difficult to say there is no success. But the same applies to failures. The Armenian version in this context is by no means an isolated case.

In the meantime, Turkey wonders why the Turkish authorities signed the Zurich protocols with Armenia. It lamented the fact that so far no one has bothered to answer this seemingly elementary question.

Davutoglu announced his conclusion from the process. Some won and some lost from another Armenian tricks. I propose to consider the positions of the major players of the post-Zurich events, who are few – Turkey, Armenia, the U.S., Russia and Azerbaijan.

What did Ankara gain? First and foremost, Armenia’s denial of territorial claims against Turkey. Second, Armenians refusal to stop “recognize the genocide” campaign.” Thirdly, a refusal to withdraw from several regions of Azerbaijan with further opportunity of complete settlement to the Karabakh conflict. The first two desires were clearly reflected in the Zurich protocols whereas the third one was voiced as no less binding for ratification in parliament following a strong protest from Azerbaijan. Can we consider the third requirement a precondition? In any case, it is so naive to believe it. Situation in the region is far more obvious. Similarly, ikebana was originally destined to become a mourning wreath without the third component.

What did Ankara get? It got what Azerbaijan warned constantly. Azerbaijan better knows to what degree Armenia is constructive and open to dialogue and how this South Caucasus republic is anti-regional. It knows better that Armenia has failed to emerge as a real state? Simply put, Ankara got nothing. It demonstrated Armenia’s failure to the West. Admittedly, success is very dubious, even if it is a response to the above question voiced by Ankara.

What did Armenia seek? Obviously, opening of borders with Turkey so that to revive its almost dead economy. As an educated man and  homo sapiens, I find it hard to understand why Sargsyan instructed the foreign minister sign the protocol if Turkey conditions were originally known.

And what did Armenia get? Nothing. External assistance is not available. Borders with the only possible new investor are closed. "Genocide" is not recognized (even if it will be recognized by some countries, the Republic of Turkey is not responsible for actual or attributed acts of the Ottoman Empire in the format in 1915). Apart from this, Yerevan  disgraced itself with a game of "withdrawal of signatures", calling into question its "honor."

What did the U.S. gain? I stopped believing in peace in 1988 when I was 12 years old. The U.S. has never said “farewell” to arms. Of course, here it was about the "second window" to the South Caucasus. The first was opened with a great roar and shriek through Georgia. They tried to open the second through Armenia. In my humble understanding, Armenia cannot withdraw from a state of permanent "outpost" even by the Turkish investments. However, a key to the South Caucasus lies with Azerbaijan.

What did the U.S. achieve? A trick to push "genocidal resolution" through the House of Representatives may result in shake-up situation in the Middle East which may prove disastrous for Washington. Given that Ankara nicely hobnobs with Tehran and is in a diplomatic confrontation with Israel, so it can easily be directed towards Russia. Do you think Turkish diplomats began talking about the prospects of the Eurasian Union similar to the European Union accidentally? The recent  polls in Turkey have indicated  population’s negative attitude towards the United States. Percentage of dissatisfied will only grow while Turkey will remain a special country for the region.

What is Russia’s gain? The balance is known. The key to the region lies with Azerbaijan. Armenia survives through subsidies. It is finally high time to talk to Turkey. Hence the conclusion: satisfying Azerbaijan’s desires (to achieve a peace agreement, combining the principle of territorial integrity (prevalent) with the right of peoples to self-determination (maximum compromise by Baku) will not offend Armenia and will not put Ankara at odds with Washington.

The third point is almost complete. But it will not do without the first two, especially without the first. So, given the "gas hospitality,” everything is still to come in this respect. And the second can be handled without the Zurich protocols. More profitable for Moscow is to seize initiative from Washington.  Russia is not so naive to believe in the performance of the “good and bad investigator” which Armenia is staging now. Sargsyan seems not to be against, but he may be replaced. Who will dare in Armenia to be target of Russia’s wrath?

What did Russia achieve? In such a situation,  it holds all the cards. Whether Russia will take advantage of its chance is another question. For the first time in the past 20 years, its possibilities coincide with its desires and ambitions – with economic potential.
So, I think Moscow will say “yes" rather "no.”

And what did Azerbaijan seek? It tried to prevent the protocols' realization, or influence them so they would be realized while taking into account Azerbaijan’s interests.

What did Baku get? Protocols did not take force and they will not certainly not come into force.

K. Guluzade
Day.Az writer

Print version

Views: 4113

Connect with us. Get latest news and updates.

Recommend news to friend

  • Your name:
  • Your e-mail:
  • Friend's name:
  • Friend's e-mail: