By Taleen Babayan
NEW YORK — In a lecture at New York’s Columbia University on Tuesday, September 29, Armenia’s Foreign Minister Dr. Eduard Nalbandian stressed that questions concerning the Nagorno-Karabagh issue and the Armenian Genocide would not be put in jeopardy by the Armenia-Turkey protocols, due to be signed this month.
The 30-minute talk, which was open to the public, also highlighted in more general terms Armenia’s foreign policy agenda and other regional difficulties the country faces.
“The Caucasus region presents a hot spot with security threats and challenges,” said Nalbandian. “Interstate tensions have arisen because of closed borders and the economic blockade [on Armenia].”
Nalbandian advocated the open-border policy with Turkey, saying it would bring security and stability to the region. Nalbandian said that if the protocols are ratified, Armenia would establish diplomatic relations with Turkey within a two-month time period, and subsequently create sub-commissions addressing issues such as consular affairs and transportation between the two countries.
Another commission of international experts would be charged with opening up dialogue on the Armenian Genocide — a move that Nalbandian insisted would allow Armenia and Turkey to address the past without compromising the historical factuality of the 1915 Genocide.