YEREVAN—Armenian Member of Turkish Parliament Garo Paylan said he would do his best to build bridges and open the “door of dialogue” between Armenia and Turkey. He was speaking at a press conference in Yerevan on Sept. 22.
“I would like to open, even slightly, the door of dialogue. I know that it will be difficult, but even in the darkest of times the door of dialogue must be kept a little open,” Paylan told the news conference, as reported by RFE/RL’s Armenian service. The member of parliament (MP) was in Armenia to attend the sixth Armenia-Diaspora Pan-Armenian Conference.
“I can see that Armenia’s leadership is prepared for such dialogue,” Paylan said, possibly hinting that Ankara is unlikely to normalize relations with Yerevan in the near future. “When I return to Turkey, I will ask our government whether they are ready for it or not,” he noted.
During his weeklong visit to the Armenian capital, Paylan also held high-level meetings with Armenian government officials. He met with Armenian Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan and Foreign Affairs Minister Edward Nalbandian on the sidelines of the state-organized Armenia-Diaspora conference.
On Sept. 22, Paylan met with Armenian President Serge Sarkisian at the Presidential Palace in Yerevan. Welcoming Paylan, Sarkisian hailed the MP’s participation in the conference and his willingness to contribute to the solutions of the problems placed on the forum’s agenda.
Paylan then briefed Sarkisian on the current state of the Armenian community in Turkey, and talked about issues related to community life that he has repeatedly raised in the Turkish Parliament.