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Turkey Backtracks On Talks With Armenia

Armenia's Eduard Nalbandian said Turkey wants to scuttle the talks.
YEREVAN -- Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan confirmed on April 8 that Nagorno-Karabakh's status must be resolved before Turkey and Armenia can open full diplomatic relations.

"The Azerbaijan-Armenian dispute should be resolved first," Erdogan told reporters. "Then problems between Turkey and Armenia can be solved, too."

Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian called the statement an attempt to scuttle the talks.

U.S. President Barack Obama pressed for an agreement between the two neighbors during his two-day visit to Turkey this week, but Azerbaijani parliament deputy Vahid Ahmedov said on April 8 that the prospect of Armenian-Turkish normalization “is stabbing Azerbaijan in the back."

Former Armenian Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian told RFE/RL's Armenian Service on April 9 that "the ball is in Turkey's court."