ANKARA — Both the spokesperson of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the Turkish Foreign Ministry strongly reacted to recent remarks by Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian in response to an invitation by Erdogan.
“It is impossible to admit remarks by Sarkisian aiming at our president’s invitation to Armenia, which are against the diplomatic practices,” spokesperson Ibrahim Kalin told Anadolu Agency on Jan. 31.
“We return the remarks by Mr. Sarkisian, which are not appropriate for a state man,” he said.
Armenia is bidding to turn the year 2015 into a campaign against Turkey and Turks, Kalin said, also blaming Sarkisian for exceeding diplomatic lines.
President Sarkisian rejected Erdogan’s invitation to visit Turkey on April 24 and attend a remembrance ceremony for 1915 battle of Gallipoli, calling it a “primitive” attempt to overshadow the centenary of the Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire.
Sarkisian claimed that the timing of the Turkish ceremony “pursues a primitive goal of deflecting the international community’s attention from Armenian genocide commemorations.” This is a continuation of Ankara’s “traditional policy of denial” of the genocide, he said.
“Before initiating remembrance ceremonies Turkey should fulfill a much more important obligation to its own people and the entire world: recognize and condemn the Armenian genocide,” added Sarkisian.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry also said in a statement Jan. 31 that the Armenian president ignored Turkey’s “humane, logical and realistic” approach once again with the recent remarks and rejected a hand, and invitation with an “unhandsome tone.”
“We strongly condemn a tone that is not appropriate for the leader of neighboring country or a representative of the historic Armenian people,” the statement roughly translates.
In his rebuff letter Sarkisian reminded Erdogan that he had invited him to Yerevan to commemorate the innocent victims of the Armenian Genocide on April 24, 2015. “We usually don’t accept being hosted by the invitee without receiving a response to our invitation.” He concluded.