There Must Be No Disagreements In Business, Says Turkish Businessman


Turkish businessmen are for the first time participating in the 10th
International Tourism Exhibition that opened on May 14 in Yerevan.

"The delegation of the town of Van [Western Armenia, now in Turkey]
is actively participating in the exhibit", organizer of the exhibit
Eghishe Tanashyan told, adding that this year the exhibit
has seen an unprecedented number of participants.

While talking to journalists Turkish businessman Orhan Demir said
they wanted to be friends with Armenia.

"Of course, we want the border to open. Disagreements are possible
in [diplomatic] relations, but there must be no disagreements in
business," said he, adding that the visit of the Turkish delegation
enables the two countries to develop tourism both in Armenia and
in Turkey.

The exhibition had 87 participant companies from Turkey, Georgia,
Tunisia, the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh and Armenia.

Ombudsman Demands Documentation Regarding "Student Park" Constructio


[ 2010/05/14 | 13:32 ]

The RA Human Rights Ombudsman Armen Harutyunyan has demanded that
the Yerevan Municipality hand over documents regarding controversial
construction at the park called "Student Garden". Construction
has triggered a flurry of protest by activists groups and citizens
concerned that another green space in Yerevan is being sacrificed to
the altar of economic greed.

The letter calls attention to the fact that the Armenian media has
covered the construction of two cafes in the park situated between
the National Library of Armenia and State Agrarian University. Mr.

Harutyunyan sates in the letter that he was been approached by several
organizations protesting that the extent of ongoing construction is
exceeding what the permits allow.

The Ombudsman has asked the Municipality to hand over all documentation
regarding construction at the site to his office within ten days
for review

A Tour To Be Organized In Gafesjian Art Center Within The Internatio


MAY 14, 2010

YEREVAN, MAY 14, ARMENPRESS: A tour will be organized for disabled
people in Gafesjian Art Center on May 18 within the frameworks of
the International Day of Museums. Anna Direy, human resources and
marketing manager of the center, told Armenpress that the center wants
to afford disabled people an opportunity of getting acquainted with
the presented exemplars.

Fifty people will visit the museum that day, as well as the children
of the province children houses will be invited. The center cooperates
with "UNISON" NGO and with the Association of Museum Employees and

"Paros" song group will give a performance at the end, the majority
of which are disabled people. The tour will start from "Gafesjian"
park of sculptures. They will be afforded an opportunity of getting
acquainted with monumental works of world sculptors.

Six exhibition halls operate in the center, where the main part of
the presented works is selected from the personal collection of L.

It includes over 5 thousand works. Interesting samples of feature
glassmaking are involved in the collection. J. Gafesjian’s collection
also includes numerous paintings of such art figures, canvases and
sculptors, as Fernando Bottero, Arshile Gorky, Jennifer Bartlett and
Andi Warhol.

On May 15, the art center intends a number of events within the
frameworks of the European Night of Museums. That day from 10:00 am
till midnight the entrance will be free. The visitors will have an
opportunity of listening to live music and watching feature films on
art and feature glassmaking.

Energy Issues Underlie Russian-Turkish Relations


May 14, 2010 – 16:00 AMT 11:00 GMT

Moscow is not interested in Turkey’s engagement in the Karabakh
process, according to professor Ruben Safrastyan, director of the RA
NAS Institute of Oriental Studies.

Assessing the visit of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to Ankara,
prof. Safrastyan said that economic and energy issues underlie
Russian-Turkish relations. "Russia and Turkey have always been rivals
in the region," he said.

As to Armenia-Turkey rapprochement, prof. Safrastyan said that "the
Turkish leadership will hardly change its position in the near future"

He also stressed that it’s a favorable moment for Armenia to promote
the international process of the Armenian Genocide recognition.

"European Night Of Museums" Full Of Surprises


MAY 13, 2010

YEREVAN, MAY 13, ARMENPRESS: This year "European Night of Museums"
will be conducted on May 15. Numerous events will be conducted in
Hovhannes Tumanyan Museum on the occasion of the holiday. Director
of the museum Narine Tukhikyan told Armenpress that the goal of the
initiative is to draw the public attention to museums.

Thanks to "European Night of Museums" wide circles of society,
especially the "night loving" young people, will be afforded an
opportunity of visiting museums. "The holiday begins with the sunset,
ends at midnight and is called to increase the public competence on
museum collections and cultural heritage." N. Tukhikyan said.

According to her, that day will be full of surprises for visitors. "At
first the "Ascension Night" will be staged, casting of lots will be
held, "Aregnazan" educational complex will come forward with circus
performances and with a concert program, and "Rotonda" theater of the
museum will be presented by "Sutlik Voskan" theatrical performance,"
N. Tukhikyan said adding that the events in their turn will be rich
in surprises, and at 24:00 pm in the evening a firework will be held.

"European Night of Museums" is conducted under the patronage of

ANKARA: Official Says EU Not Meant To "Judge History" Of Turkish-Arm


Anadolu Agency
May 12 2010

Brussels, 12 May: European Commission said [on] Wednesday [12 May]
EU’s job was not to judge history over Armenian allegations regarding
the incidents of 1915.

In response to a question asked by extreme-right-winger members of the
European Parliament whether or not EU recognized Armenian allegations,
EU’s Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fuele said EU’s job was not to
judge history. He said EU’s job was to maintain peace.

Fuele said EU was a project aimed at peace, democracy, stability and
prosperity in the continent.

He said EU encourages Turkey and Armenia to remain committed to
normalization process, recalling that the union called on the
two countries to ratify protocols in a reasonable time frame and
implement them.

In October 2009, Turkey and Armenia signed two protocols in Switzerland
to restore diplomatic ties and open their border.

Fuele added that full normalization of Turkey-Armenia relations would
contribute to security, stability and cooperation in South Caucasus. He
said vision, courage and dialogue was needed to overcome past pains.

Azerbaijan, Armenia On Two Opposite Sites Of Madrid Principles

Armen Hareyan
May 13 2010

Azerbaijan and Armenia have in principle agreed to the Madrid
Principles proposed by the mediators as a way to resolve the Nagorno
Karabakh conflict. A simple reverse of the order of the principles
could have helped to settle for peace. However, the two countries
look at the principles from two opposite points of views.

Azerbaijan looks favorable at the Madrid Principles because it
promises the return of the territories adjacent to Nagorno Karabakh
Republic. They also call for the return of the internally displaced
people to their original dwelling locations and a referendum to
determine the final status of Nagorno Karabakh. The date of this
"legally binding expression of will" is not established and it’s pretty
vague how it will be conducted. The details are not specified. This
is why those are called principles.

Armenia, on the other hand, while agreeing to the Madrid Principles
in principle, says the international status of the Nagorno Karabakh
Republic (NKR) is the core of the conflict. Thus, we need to start
from it, Armenia says. It calls for more specification on how and
when the referendum will be conducted to determine the future status
of the Nagorno Karabakh. Armenia has said it is willing to discuss
issues that are of mutual interest with Azerbaijan, but only after
the latter is ready to discuss the future status of NKR.

Discomforting Points Over The Principles

Armenia says bringing back the Azeri refugees back to Nargorno Karabakh
and making them to leave side by side with the Armenian majority of
Karabakh before the conflict is resolved is an invitation to another
conflict. This is why Armenia insists to start from the status and
details of the referendum for the future status of NKR.

Azerbaijan, on the other hand, wants to keep the referendum part as
distant and vague as possible. It knows that the referendum will lead
to Nagorno Karabakh’s Independence, as 80 percent of the population
is Armenian.

Thus the two countries have in principle agreed to the Madrid
Principles, set forward by Russia, France and U.S., but look at them
from totally different point of views. This is where the mediators
can come to help by simply reversing the order of those principles.

The core of the conflict is the status of the Nagorno Karabakh
Republic, which already for 20 years is de facto independent from
Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan does not want to accept it, but also does not
explain how it can convince Karabakh population to vote to remain in
one country with it.

This conflict did not start because of the refugees or liberated
territories. It started because of the violated human rights of the
Armenian population in Nagorno Karabakh’s Autonomous Region. Thus the
region voted for independence. If the mediators are really interested
in this conflict’s quick resolution they need to get a hold of the
problem and not the symptoms. Otherwise, currently it seems that
everyone is trying to heal the symptoms, leaving the problem at
the end.

Russia, Turkey Sign Nuclear Power Plant Deal


Kyiv Post
May 12 2010

Russia and Turkey signed on Wednesday a $20 billion project for Moscow
to build and own a controlling stake in Turkey’s first nuclear power
plant, as the two Cold War-era rivals try to cement a strategic

Several agreements, including removing visa restrictions and shipping
oil products from the Black Sea, were struck during a landmark visit
by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to Turkey, aiming to turn itself
into an energy hub for European supplies.

Russia has built nuclear power plants in nations from China to Iran
and might build a power plant in Syria, as it aggressively seeks deals
to build new stations and boost its presence in foreign energy markets.

Nuclear agency chief Sergei Kiriyenko said state-controlled building
group Atomstroiexport will lead construction of the plant on NATO
member Turkey’s southern coast.

"It’s an extremely important contract for us," Kiriyenko told

Turkey is keen to reduce its dependence on imported energy and cover
a looming power shortfall. Russia provides 60 percent of Turkey’s
gas needs, which has raised concerns that Turkey is becoming too
dependent on Russia, a major trading partner.

Such deals would have been inconceivable two decades ago, when Turkey
guarded NATO’s eastern borders during the Cold War.

However, seeking to balance its West-facing foreign policy, Turkey
— whose economy grew by an average 6 percent a year between 2003
and 2008 — has strengthened relations with Russia and other former
Soviet republics in the past years.

"We share a determination to increase the trade volume from a current
$38 billion to $100 billion in five years," President Abdullah Gul
said after hosting talks with Medvedev.

Among the accords signed was one on transporting crude oil from the
Black Sea via the Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline.

Russian state pipeline monopoly Transneft said last year Russian
interests may take up to a 50 percent stake in Turkey’s $3 billion
Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline project in exchange for providing much-needed

The project, co-led by Italy’s ENI, will link the Black Sea and the
Mediterranean and advance Ankara’s plan to turn its southern port of
Ceyhan into a regional energy hub.


During his visit, Medvedev said he hoped Turkey and Armenia could
restore full relations to help stabilise the volatile South Caucasus
region. A U.S.- and Russian-backed peace initiative to end a century
of hostility between Armenia and Turkey collapsed last month.

"I hope that in the end the sides can reach all of the necessary
agreements and fully restore ties which would without doubt help to
stabilise the situation in our region," he said.

Armenia accuses the Ottoman Turks of killing millions of Armenians
in 1915, but late last year Armenia and Turkey agreed a series of
protocols to mend ties.

Last month, however, Armenia suspended ratification of the protocols
that would have resulted in an opening of its western border with
Turkey, because Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan introduced
a condition calling on Armenia to make moves to defuse the
Nagorno-Karabakh dispute.

Following the break-up of the Soviet Union, ethnic Christian Armenians,
backed by Armenian forces, in Nagorno-Karabakh broke away from Azeri
rule and some 30,000 people were killed before a ceasefire was agreed
in 1994.

Turkey had sealed its border with Armenia in support of fellow Muslim

There have been fears that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict could flare
again, as Azerbaijan reacted angrily to Turkey seeking to normalise
relations with Armenia.

Turkey hopes to enlist Russia’s help to break the deadlock.

Vladimir Akopian Currently 3rd At Men’s Grand Prix In Astrakhan


May 11, 2010 – 12:02 AMT 07:02 GMT

Armenian grandmaster Vladimir Akopian tied a game vs. Boris Gelfand
(Israel) in the first round of Men’s Grand Prix in Astrakhan, Russia,
and is currently the 3rd with 0.5 points.

In the second round, Akopian will rival Pavel Elyanov (Ukraine),
who made a draw with Peter Svidler (Russia) in the first round and
is currently the 2nd in the standings.

Defense Ministers Of Russia And Azerbaijan Discuss Karabakh Conflict


2010-05-11 13:05:00

ArmInfo. Defense Ministers of Russia and Azerbaijan, Anatoly Serdukov
and Safar Abiyev, have discussed the prospects of military-technical
cooperation of the two countries, the military and political situation
in the region and settlement of the Karabakh conflict, RIA Novosty
reported quoting the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry press-service.

Minister Serdukov was on a working visit in Azerbaijan on Tuesday.

"During the meeting, Abiyev said that the efforts of the OSCE Minsk
Group on settlement of the (Karabakh) conflict have brought no results,
therefore it is necessary to bolster these efforts. The minister said
that all the efforts must be concentrated on peaceful resolution on
the conflict, otherwise the situation in the region may grow to an
undesirable level," the source reported.

Note, it is the Azerbaijani party that regularly threatens Armenia with
"military resolution of the conflict."