Society should resist opening of Turkey- Armenia border: Azerbaijani opposition leader
Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct.22 / Trend A.Huseynbala /
Azerbaijani opposition leader thinks that the society should protest against opening of the Turkey-Armenia borders.
"Majority of Turkish people are against signing the protocols. The Turkish government has taken this action under pressure of the U.S.A. and the West. The society should resist to prevent this step," Head of the National Independence Party of Azerbaijan (NIPA) Etibar Mammadov told Trend .
Turkish and Armenian foreign ministers Ahmet Davutoglu and Edward Nalbandian signed the protocols Ankara-Yerevan in Zurich on October 10.
Diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey have been broken due to Armenia's claims of an alleged genocide, and its occupation of Azerbaijani lands. The border between them has been broken since 1993.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan lost all of Nagorno-Karabakh except for Shusha and Khojali in December 1991. In 1992-93, Armenian armed forces occupied Shusha, Khojali and 7 districts surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh. Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the U.S. - are currently holding the peace negotiations.
The Turkish and Azerbaijani public should participate in protests to put pressure on the Turkish government, Mammadov said. "But we can not allow this issue to be abused," the leader of the NIPA said.
According to Mammadov, there is no need to raise the issue of the flag in the statements on the Turkish government's intention to open its border with Armenia.
"The Azerbaijani flag was not allowed to be taken to the stadium under the Turkish official's decision in Bursa. The Turkish public opposed it and criticized its government," he said.
Regarding the possibility of joint activities of the Azerbaijani opposition parties to prevent the ratification of the protocols in the Turkish parliament, Mammadov said that every organization should express its position.
"You should not differentiate the power and the opposition in this issue. This issue affects the national interests," Mammadov added.
NIPA, founded in 1992, is the first officially registered political party in Azerbaijan. Etibar Mammadov was the founder and chairman of the party until 2004. At present, Mammadov is the deputy chairman of the International Democratic Society.
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