SEPTEMBER 21. The Turkish authorities and Azerbaijan’s Embassy in Ankara have information that certain forces in the Turkish borderline regions of Kars and Igdir are advocating the re-opening of the Armenian-Turkish border and starting trade between the two countries at the state level. All the necessary preventive measures are being taken in this connection, Azerbaijani Ambassador to Turkey Mamed Aliyev told journalists.
According to him, Turkey broke off diplomatic relations with Armenia10 years ago. However, individual cases of unofficial trade between Turkish and Armenian enterprises are registered. Aliyev expressed his regret over the fact that some Azerbaijanians residing in the Turkish borderland are also for economic cooperation with Armenia. According to the Azeri ambassador, those people are pursuing their own interests, without thinking of the interests of Azerbaijan. Therefore, relevant measures are being taken against the citizens who act in defiance with the Turkish authorities’ policy, and some heads of the country’s north-eastern regions have been relieved for trying to establish trade contacts with Armenia.
According to the Azerbaijani diplomat, the Armenian lobby in Turkey is also trying to get the Armenian-Turkish border re-opened. Azerbaijan’s Embassy is taking measures to neutralize the policy that runs contrary to the interests of the Turkish authorities. However, Aliyev said, all such attempts fail. According to him, official Ankara’s position on this issue is based on the following principle: any cooperation with Armenia is out of the question until it puts an end to “the occupation of the Azerbaijani lands.”