Azerbaijani MP: Temporary opening of Turkish-Armenian border can encourage Armenians
Azerbaijan, Baku, Aug.25 / Trend, M.Aliyev /
Even temporary opening of the Turkish-Armenian border, which is expected within NATO military exercises, can encourage the Armenians, the Azerbaijani MP Fazil Mustafa told Trend today.
He said just for this reason the Azerbaijani side is concerned over temporary opening of the border.
Earlier, media reported that Turkey may temporarily open the border on Sept. 11- 17 as part of the NATO military exercises in Armenia. However, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu denied the rumors.
Diplomatic relations between Armenia and Turkey were severed in 1993 due to Armenia's claims of an alleged genocide and its occupation of Azerbaijani lands.
"Opening of the border contradicts both Azerbaijan and Turkey's interests. However, Turkey has obligations before NATO, so in this issue Turkey will be forced to step back and temporarily open its border," Mustafa said.
He said even temporary opening of the border can in the future lead to an undesirable deterioration of relations between Turkey and Azerbaijan.
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 seven surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France, and the United States - are currently holding the peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh region and the occupied territories.