Languages
Page last updated at 11:12 GMT, Thursday, 22 April 2010 12:12 UK

Armenia suspends normalisation of ties with Turkey

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (L) and Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian sign historic protocols on
The two countries signed a deal to nomalise relations last year

Armenia's ruling coalition has said it is halting the ratification in parliament of landmark accords on normalising relations with Turkey.

It said it was because of Turkey's refusal to "ratify the protocols without preconditions", chiefly over the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh.

The countries signed a historic deal in 2009 to re-establish diplomatic ties.

There had been a century of hostility following the World War I mass killings of Armenians.

MASS KILLINGS OF ARMENIANS
Hundreds of thousands of ethnic Armenians killed by Ottoman Turks in 1915-6
Many historians and the Armenian people believe the killings amount to genocide
Turks and some historians deny they were orchestrated
More than 20 countries regard the massacres as genocide

Diplomatic moves to normalise relations have faltered recently.

The Armenian coalition decided to halt the ratification process of the accord signed in October last year after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said it would depend on a peace deal over Nagorno-Karabakh, the Armenian statement said.

"Considering the Turkish side's refusal to fulfil the requirement to ratify the accord without preconditions in a reasonable time, making the continuation of the ratification process in the national parliament pointless, we consider it necessary to suspend this process," the statement said.

"The political majority in the national assembly considers statements from the Turkish side in recent days as unacceptable, specifically those by Prime Minister Erdogan, who has again made the ratification of the Armenia-Turkish protocols by the Turkish parliament directly dependent on a resolution over Nagorno-Karabakh," it said.

Turkey closed its border with Armenia in 1993 to protest against Armenia's war with its neighbour Azerbaijan over the enclave, which is within Azerbaijan but under the control of ethnic Armenian forces.

Map of Nagorno-Karabakh

Thousands of people lost their lives in a conflict that erupted after the break-up of the Soviet Union.

A fragile ceasefire was signed in 1994 leaving Karabakh under de facto ethnic Armenian control.

In October last year, Turkey and Armenia signed a historic accord normalising relations despite differences over the World War I mass killings of Armenians.

Armenia wants Turkey to recognise the killings as an act of genocide, but successive Turkish governments have refused to do so.

Hundreds of thousands of Armenians died in 1915, when they were deported en masse from eastern Anatolia by the Ottoman Empire.

More than 20 countries have recognised the killings as deliberate genocide. Turkish officials accept that atrocities were committed but deny they were orchestrated.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Turkey 'could deport Armenians'
17 Mar 10 |  Europe
Turkish anger at 'genocide' vote
05 Mar 10 |  Americas
Head to head: Was it genocide?
04 Mar 10 |  Europe
Armenia and Turkey normalise ties
10 Oct 09 |  Europe
Armenia-Turkey thaw tinged with pain
04 Jul 09 |  Europe

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific