Davutoğlu says Turkey’s 1915 statement achieved its goal

Davutoğlu says Turkey’s 1915 statement achieved its goal

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu (Photo: Today's Zaman)

April 25, 2014, Friday/ 20:38:20/ TODAY'S ZAMAN | ANKARA
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said that a statement from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan regarding the tragic events of 1915 that led to relocation of Armenian population in Anatolia in the First World War in Ottoman Turkey has accomplished its goal, considering the reactions worldwide and that the statements was primarily aimed at Armenians, rather than other countries.

“The statement of our prime minister brought positive reactions. It has been accepted that regarding this issue, the Turkish people have taken a historic step for dialogue and friendship. The message was intended for Armenians. It was a humanitarian message. The reactions from Armenian groups were extremely positive. The message has achieved its goal,” said Davutoğlu during a joint press conference with his Sudanese counterpart, Ali Ahmed Karti, on Friday.

In a historic first for the Turkish Republic, Erdoğan extended condolences to the grandchildren of Armenians who lost their lives in 1915. His surprising statement came just one day before April 24, when Armenians commemorate the events they describe as genocide under Ottoman rule. The statement was issued by the Prime Ministry on Wednesday in nine languages -- Turkish, German, French, English, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Western Armenian and Eastern Armenian -- in a move to make a sure the statement is heard and understood by a wide audience.

“The friendly hand that we have extended has got its response,” added Davutoğlu.

When asked what Turkey's next step might be after the 1915 statement, Davutoğlu replied that on a common historical ground, the two sides could discuss the ways how a new future could be established.

Speaking to private broadcaster NTV on Thursday night, Davutoğlu noted that in Turkey's 1915 statement there was a “call to build a consensus on history."

“The Turkish prime minister has extended Turkey's hand to Armenia to bring our hearts and minds closer,” said Davutoğlu, adding that “if the statement gets an answer, then we can build a future together. If not, we will go back to the previous situation.”

The Turkish foreign minister noted that the statement demonstrates a just and humane stance and proposes the idea of building a future together.

Davutoğlu also said that relations between Armenia and Turkey needed normalization, which would improve bilateral political relations, help establish peace among the two countries' peoples and fix Armenia-Azerbaijan relations in the Caucasus.

In addition, Davutoğlu emphasized that now it was Turkey's turn to expect Armenians to offer their condolences to Turkey for the murders committed by the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) against Turkish diplomats, to avoid one-sidedness.

ASALA is known for terrorist attacks against Turkish targets in Turkey and a number of countries throughout the 1970s and 1980s. The leftist group is responsible for the deaths of more than 40 Turkish diplomats abroad and has been mostly inactive since 1985.

 Davutoğlu says stability in Sudan means stability in Africa

Davutoğlu stated that Turkey is ready to cooperate with Sudan for the stability of the African continent, adding that stability in Sudan will mean stability in the continent. The Turkish foreign minister said that during his meeting with Karti, bilateral ties between the two countries and development in Africa were discussed.

“We are ready to make all efforts to aid the recovery of Sudan and to enhance the bilateral ties between Turkey and Sudan,” he said, adding that maintenance of security and stability in Sudan was of great importance to Turkey.

The Turkish foreign minister also said that Turkey and Sudan had agreed to increase their trade volume, which now stands at $300 million. Davutoğlu also thanked Sudan for supporting Turkey's candidacy for the UN Security Council in 2015-16.

From his part, Karti said that Sudan would like Turkey to play a greater role in the region, adding that Sudan hopes to further enhance cooperation with Turkey particularly in the field of trade and the military.

“We wish to benefit from Turkey's experience. Turkey's support for Sudan is very important for us. Sudan could serve as a gateway for Turkey in the African continent,” said Karti.
Other Titles
Click For More News