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Armenia needs more allies in Genocide recognition efforts – political scientist

Armenia needs more allies in the worldwide campaign aiming at the Genocide recognition, Vahram Ter-Matevosyan, Program Chair of Political Science and International Affairs at the American University of Armenia, said on Monday, stressing the importance of an increasing international engagement in the process.

In an interview with Tert.am, the expert also admitted that the past 10-15 years have been a period of a more active polemic in not only Armenia and the Diaspora but also in different the scientific and political circles, as well as in international relations.

”The dominating mentality in Armenia is that it is difficult to work with the Turkish society [because] it is very complicated. [The common belief is that] the political circles in Turkey are, in a way, more self-contained and more conservative. That’s true indeed, but it shouldn’t give any way to disappointment or cause us to step aside from everything to look upon the developments in the status of an observer. We need to knock on every possible – and impossible – door in an attempt to find new allies in our efforts towards the Genocide recognition. The Armenian agenda, the Armenian-Turkish relations and the process of the recognition of the Armenian Genocide, must be a topic of debate for at least narrow circles in Turkey,” he added.

Agreeing that the process will not be easy at all, the expert warned against future disillusionment. “Yes, it is going to be really difficult, as we will inevitably meet obstacles, but that should leave us disillusioned. Neither should we rely on the hypothesis of provoking conflicts to achieve that. It can be done in a smarter way – through the use of soft methods – which I am sure many members of our government have a proper command of.”

Addressing the approaches pursued by Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan’s cabinet proper, Ter-Matevosyan said noted that their policies are built upon inert and somewhat spontaneous processes inherited from predecessors.

“I see here also a specific trend to attach as much significance to this issue as the available resources would simply permit. Yet, I do not think it a reasonable approach. The international recognition of the Genocide is a complicated process – requiring tremendous resources – but at the same time, it shouldn’t ever leave the new government in a state of despair in bringing this process to its logical end,” he said, calling for painstaking work in collaboration with the Diaspora’s lobbying organizations to adopt fresh approaches to the problem in light of the changing geopolitical challenges.


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