Federal Minister Steinmeier welcomes rapprochement between Turkey and Armenia

11.10.2009 - Press release

With the support of Swiss mediators, yesterday the Republic of Turkey and the Republic of Armenia signed two protocols on the establishment of diplomatic ties and the future development of bilateral relations.

Commenting on this, Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier issued the following statement in Berlin today (11 October):

“Yesterday Turkey and Armenia opened a new chapter in their relations. I welcome this courageous step, it deserves our respect and our recognition. The agreements offer a concrete prospect for good, neighbourly relations based on understanding and trust.

The adopted course of rapprochement is also an important contribution to greater security, stability and cooperation in the entire Caucasus region.

Now the focus must be on ratifying and realizing the protocols. We encourage all political actors in Turkey and Armenia to decisively use this newly created momentum to normalize relations.”

In addition to establishing diplomatic relations, the protocols envisage opening the border between the two countries within two months of the agreements’ entry into force. Regular consultations are to take place between the foreign ministries. Moreover, a dialogue on the historical dimension of the relations is to be initiated which will also include an independent academic investigation of the past. The implementation of the agreements is to be guaranteed by a joint governmental commission led by the foreign ministries.

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