Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec. 8 / Trend R.Hafizoglu /
The Turkish prime minister's discussions over Nagorno-Karabakh with U.S. President Barack Obama can be considered an important step to resolving the conflict, George Washington University expert Merve Kavakci said.
"The Erdogan-Obama meeting is important for the solemn resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict," the expert told Trend over the telephone.
Erdogan and Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, as well as several other officials, are visiting the U.S. Erdogan has already met with Obama. The resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the future of the Ankara-Yerevan protocols were central topics of discussion.
The PM said the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations hinges on the Armenia-Azerbaijan negotiations. Resolving Nagorno-Karabakh and liberating seven Azerbaijani regions will be a first step toward the rapprochement of Armenian-Turkey relations, Erdogan said.
The expert said the leaders of Azerbaijan and Turkey must keep Nagorno-Karabakh on the agenda resolve the conflict.
"Turkey pursues a 'no problem' policy with its neighbors, as well as with Armenia. But this policy may be implemented with Armenia only after the resolution of Nagorno-Karabakh," Kavakci added.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988 when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian armed forces have occupied 20 percent of Azerbaijan since 1992, including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and 7 surrounding districts. Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the U.S. - are currently holding the peace negotiations.
Do you have any feedback? Contact our journalist at: firstname.lastname@example.org