Conspicuously present at the grand, August-28 inauguration of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was Armenian Foreign Minister Eduard Nalbandian, marking the first-time Armenia has participated in a state-ceremony hosted by its historic enemy, Turkey.
Widely criticized in Armenia and watched with cautious hope by the Caucasus peace-wishers, the visit, so far, has amounted to no more than a walk-on role.
The inauguration in Ankara was mainly noted for the absence of Western leaders and outcries by the Turkish opposition in response to Erdoğan’s perceived authoritarian drift. Against this backdrop, Nalbandian’s visit offered a bit of positive relief. It came after almost 100 years of feuding over Ottoman Turkey’s annihilation of ethnic Armenians and republican Turkey’s subsequent denial that the actions amounted to genocide.
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