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Historyoftruth.com: Can you inform us about AVIM's (www.avim.org) activies against Armenian genocide allegations?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: First, I would like to clarify that contesting genocide allegations is not the main concern of AVIM. As a think-tank, AVIM’s mission is to study the political affairs in the Eurasian region to comprehend the challenges and the opportunities that Turkey faces within the changing global geopolitical context. Within this framework, AVIM attributes a particular attention to the Caucasus as a strategically important region within the wider Eurasian region and Armenia as one of the countries in the Caucasus and a neighbor of Turkey.

Turkey has quite good relations with two other countries in the South Caucasus, namely, Azerbajan and Georgia. Among these there countries there are mutually beneficial economic relations. Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia are the parties to not only economically but also strategically important railroad and pipeline projects. Given Russia’s ambitious ‘near abroad’ policy and the strained relations between the West and Russia, economic and strategic relations among Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia have become also important for the West.

The reason why AVIM pays a particular attention to Turkey-Armenia relations is because of the strained conduct between the two countries. Armenia chose to side with Russia and has enslaved itself within the Russian orbit mostly as a consequence of the choices of the Armenian elite. This is one of the reasons of the deplorable state of affairs between Turkey and Armenia. Yet, another reason that is more important is Armenia’s choice to pursue a policy to corner Turkey and force it to certain concessions by playing the card of ‘genocide’ particularly since 1998. In fact, Armenia employs “genocide allegations” as a political tool to put pressure on Turkey. AVIM’s interest in studying the “genocide allegations” derives from this situation.  

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All in all, AVIM perceives “genocide allegations” not as a historical but a political question and tries to analyze “genocide allegations” from within a political framework.  

Historyoftruth.com: What is the role of Armenian diaspora on Armenian government's policies on genocide allegations?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: This is a very crucial point, which is grasped quite erroneously in Turkey. The general belief in Turkey is that Armenian diaspora is the main agent of the “genocide allegations” and Armenia has a more conciliatory stance. Today, this is a very wrong idea.

It is true that Levon Ter Petrosyan, the first president of Armenia, had a more positive approach towards Turkish-Armenian relations. His realist and pragmatist approach led him to formulate what is referred to as “New Thinking”. The idea of Ter Petrosyan was to clean out the romantic and mythical components in the Armenian historical narrative that represents the Armenians as a nation of an exceptional people. Instead of the myth of exceptionality, uniqueness and superiority of the Armenian people that dominated Armenian historical narrative, Ter Petrosyan tried to install the notion of ‘normalcy’ of the Armenians and the Armenian history. He advocated the construction of a realistic historiography. Ter Petrosyan tried to do that because he understood that Armenian historiography and the sense of the Armenian exceptionality blurred Armenian psyche and led them to make wrong decisions based on myths rather than realities.  

However, Robert Kocharyan, the second president of Armenia, halted this search for a new national narrative and reinstalled what is called “National Ideology” that is grounded on Hay Dat, i.e., Armenian Cause, a worldview that is based on fear of and hatred against the Turks. Today, “National Ideology” is the dominant paradigm without a serious rival and almost all political parties and public intellectuals speak from within this ideology. This is ideological and intellectual desertification.

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In fact, for many years it has been obvious that Armenia assumed the role to lead “genocide allegations” against Turkey. Yet, in 2015 this became crystal clear. If one reviews speeches and statements of the high-ranking state officials of Armenia and President Sargsyan, she or he will see that.

 

It must also be understood that, by positioning itself as the champion of the ‘genocide allegations’, the political elite in Armenia aims to assume the leadership of the Armenians around the world because they believe ‘genocide cause’ is the primary cement that binds the Armenians and shape their thinking. By championing the ‘genocide cause’, the political elite in Armenia also seeks to hide its incompetence and corruption away from the judging eyes of the diaspora.

 

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To sum up, it is misleading to think that Armenian diaspora pressurizes the Armenian government to pursue the ‘genocide politics’. Armenian government deliberately pursues ‘genocide politics’ against Turkey and aims to position itself as the champion of this cause vis-à-vis the diaspora. Given this situation, what needs to be done is to examine the roles that diaspora and Armenia assume and the division of labor between the two, as well as the discursive strategies of the diaspora and Armenia and their diverse discourses that address different audiences such as the international community, Turkey and the Armenians.

Historyoftruth.com: Is there any moderate political movement in Armenia that would prefer to have better relations with Turkey and Azerbaijan in case they come in power?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: As I mentioned, today Armenia is debilitated with ideological homogenization that led to ideological intellectual desertification. We hardly see any meaningful ideological or intellectual debates in Armenia with respect to Armenia’s relations with Turkey and Azerbaijan. Having said that, it must also be acknowledged that there are smart and open minded young people in this country that are stranded within this ideological and intellectual climate. These people seek a window to breath. Unfortunately, windows are all closed.

 

Talking about the political movements that would prefer to have better relations with Turkey and Azerbaijan, I can think of Armenian National Congress, a faction in the Armenian parliament. Armenian National Congress is a coalition of minor oppositional parties and movements and the former followers of Levon Ter Petrosyan. However, realistically speaking, I see no chance for the Armenian National Congress to come to power. Ter Petrosyan has lost his credit in the Armenian society and he is not perceived as a leader any more. Therefore, practically speaking, I do not think there is any political movement in Armenia that may change the conduct of Armenia with Turkey and/or Azerbaijan.    

Historyoftruth.com: Do you expect a regime change in Armenia as a result of popular protests like Electric Yerevan?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I do not expect a regime change in the near future or mid-future. There are many political parties in Armenia but all of them have the same ideology and discourse with the minor exception of the Armenian National Congress. What we see is not a debate about ‘what to do’, but only a minor discussion on ‘how to do’.

 

Electric Yerevan had been at the focus of the international media in this summer. Certainly, such civil initiatives are important and also good for a society. Initiatives emerging from the civil society are important factors for the consolidation of democracy. Yet, despite the media attention, practically speaking Electric Yerevan was not a very significant movement and it dissolved without significant achievements.    

 

I think Russia’s reaction to Electric Yerevan Russian was very significant. Although Electric Yerevan was not a major event, Russian media published articles that compared it with the EuroMaidan in Ukraine. In fact, this was a very deliberate treat to Armenia. Russia gave Armenia the message that it would not allow Armenia to escape from its orbit. This is another reason why a regime change in Armenia in the near future is unlikely.      

Historyoftruth.com:  There are many Turkish speaker Armenians who have Anatolian roots living in the United States. What can Turkey do to win their hearts while fighting against Armenian genocide allegations?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I believe it is important to be watchful towards the sensitivities of these people and to communicate them the approach, perspective and also the reservations of Turkey. These two must be done in a very well balanced way.

 

Turkey must truly understand that many Armenians in the US and elsewhere truly believe 1915 events was a genocide. A rough “genocide is a lie” rhetoric can not win the hearts of the Armenians. We must understand that for several reasons, including the activities of the ‘memory and identity engineers’, diaspora Armenians believe that 1915 events was a genocide. Here, the crucial point is equating mass atrocities with genocide; Armenians think that rejecting the characterization of the 1915 tragedy as genocide means denying the atrocities. In my point of view, Turkey shall explain with patience that genocide is a legal term that defines a very specific crime, not a popular umbrella term that refers to mass atrocities. Turkey should explain the Armenians that rejecting the characterization of the 1915 tragedy as genocide is not to deny the sufferings of their ancestors. In addition, Turkey should expose the abuse of the genocide discourse by Armenian and non-Armenian actors.

 

I would like to underline that while being attentive to the sensitivities of the Armenians, Turkey must explicitly put that it cannot accept the characterization of the 1915 events as genocide. I am emphasizing that because in the last 7-8 years Turks who label themselves as “liberal intellectuals” began to parrot the discourse and the rhetoric of the radical sections of Armenians in the name of empathy. However, this has backfired and instead of creating an atmosphere of reconciliation, a belief or at least hope about the possibility of Turkey’s acceptance of the characterization of 1915 events as genocide emerged among the Armenians. This perception encouraged Armenians to push for more. Today, the gestures and reconciliatory discourse of Turkey is perceived as a weakness, concession and retreat by the Armenians. This does not help the resolution of the conflict between the two nations.

 

Lastly, I would like to emphasize that there are Armenians in the US, who are Turkish citizens. Turkey must not forget that these are Turkish-Armenians and they are the daughters and sons of Turkey just like any other citizen of Turkey. With this consciousness of the civic nationhood, Turkey must categorically distinguish these people from the non-Turkish Armenians, and cherish them and provide them with assistance whenever they need and ask for.      

Historyoftruth.com: How does Russia's new aggressive policy in the international arena affect Nagorno Karabakh problem?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: Russia's aggressive foreign policy negatively affects Nagorno Karabakh problem. Armenia thinks that Russian annexation of Crimea provides an opportunity to legitimize the Armenian position in Karabakh. Armenia hopes that the annexation of Crimea and the ineffective response of the West would help to legitimize the forceful take over of land. Moreover, Armenia believes that the rising strength of its Russian big brother in the international domain is advantageous. As to that  point, it is important to  remember that on 27 March 2014, a non-binding resolution confirming the UN General Assembly’s commitment to the territorial integrity of Ukraine and proclaiming the invalidity of the referendum in Crimea was adopted with 100 to 11 votes and 58 abstentions. Armenia voted against this resolution. As to this vote, Artak Zakarian, the chairperson of the Armenian Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Relations,  asked rhetorically “Why should have Armenia not supported its ally, if the latter needed such support?”

 

After the referendum in Crimea, the Presidential Office of Armenia announced Armenian President Sargsyan interpreted this referendum as “another case of exercise of peoples’ right to self-determination via free expression of will.” In the fourth summit of the Eastern Partnership in Riga on 21-22 May 2015, Armenia together with Belarus opposed a joint declaration accusing the Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea. 

Armenia hopes that Russian annexation of Crimea and the ineffectiveness of the international community to respond would strengthen Armenia’s hand in the Karabakh conflict. In Armenian Mirror-Spectator, the organ of the Armenian Democratic Liberal Party-Ramgavar in the US, published an article that says annexation of Crimea is advantageous for Armenia “since the inviolability of the borders in the former Soviet bloc was broken in Kosovo and — with a counter measure — continues today in Crimea, political observers are waiting to see what actions Moscow may resort to next in Trans-Dniester and Karabagh.” It can be seen that Armenian side believes that annexation of Crimea is a step towards the de facto elimination or at least loosening of the principle of territorial integrity and such an imposed revision provides an advantage to Armenia in the Karabakh conflict.  

Historyoftruth.com: What can Turkey do more for resolution of Karabakh conflict?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I am not sure if Turkey can do much. Armenia radically opposes any Turkish interference or initiative.

Turkey is not a party to this conflict. Yet, Karabakh affects all the South Caucasus. Hence, Karabakh is a concern for Turkey, too. Karabakh conflict does not only complicate economic relations in the region, but also provides Russia with an opportunity to destabilize the region whenever it seeks to. Given that situation, what Turkey needs to do is to stand firm and try its best to maximize economic and strategic relations among Turkey, Azerbaijan and Georgia.

I would like to draw attention to a recently popularized argument about the closed land border between Turkey and Armenia and its relationship with the Karabakh Conflict. Armenian elite in diaspora and Armenia, as well as some pop-intellectuals in Turkey argue that if Turkey opens the Turkey-Armenia land border, this would help Turkey to gain economic, social and political influence over Armenia. This influence may help to soften the Armenian position on Karabakh and facilitate the peaceful resolution of the conflict. Advocates of this argument also argue that opening of the land border would bring economic advantages to Turkey. For the time being, this is a false argument forwarded with a manipulative discourse. First, statistics reveal that Armenia is not and cannot be a significant market for Turkish businesses and the economic benefit from the transportation fees would only be petty. Second, opening of the land border between Turkey and Armenia has become another aspect of the ‘Armenian Cause’ and achievement of this may create a sense of victory among the Armenians that would lead to heightened self-confidence and the consequent toughened stance of Armenia.  

Historyoftruth.com: Are there Armenian intellectuals that are against Armenian genocide allegations?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I do not know any Armenian intellectuals who reject characterization of 1915 events as genocide. As I mentioned before, there is a substantial ideological homogeneity in Armenia and also Armenian diaspora. On the other hand, there are some different opinions as to how to pursue ‘genocide politics’. I have met Armenians intellectuals in Armenia and the USA who thinks that genocide issue should be left apart at least for some time, but these people are in a minority position.     

Historyoftruth.com: Do you think that Armenia's position on 1915 incidents may soften after resolution of Karabakh problem?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: This is theoretically possible. However, the exact opposite is also possible.

For the Armenians, the ‘Karabakh Cause’ was a revenge, or at least a return match against ‘the Turk’. Despite the Armenian historiography that explains the eruption of the Karabakh conflict with reference to economic and social discrimination against the Karabakh Armenian in Soviet Azerbaijan, the reality is that ‘discrimination’ against the Armenians in Soviet Azerbaijan was no more than the ‘discrimination’ that non-titular nations faced in any other soviet republics. ‘Discrimination’ against the non-titular nations in Soviet republics was a structural situation in the Soviet polity that granted certain privileges to titular nations. The main reason of the Karabakh conflict was the sense of historical injustice among the Armenians not only in Karabakh but also in Armenia. In fact, there are indications that the Karabakh movement among Armenians first erupted in Soviet Armenia rather than Karabakh.

Karabakh problem can be solved in four different ways: 1) Karabakh becomes a de jure independent Armenian state, 2) Karabakh is incorporated into Armenia, 3) Azerbaijan regains Karabakh, 4) Karabakh remains within  Azerbaijan as a region that is granted an utmost autonomy. The first two alternatives are what Armenians strive for. If one of these alternatives happens, there may be two consequences with respect to Armenia’s position on 1915 incidents: 1) Such a victory may cause a psychological relief for the Armenians by creating a sense of accomplishment of the revenge against ‘the Turk’ and lead to Armenia’s softening position on 1915 incidents. 2) Such a victory may create a psychological euphoria among the Armenians that would lead them to believe that they can push more for further victories. In that case, Armenian position on 1915 incidents would toughen. I believe the second scenario is more probable. The third alternative would lead to a dramatic disappointment among the Armenians and this disappointment may lead either to more radicalization or may trigger a process of self-criticism. In the second case, a more reconciliary approach may emerge among the Armenians with respect to 1915 events. The fourth alternative, i.e., Karabakh within Azerbaijan with an utmost autonomy may facilitate a reevaluation of the past mistakes both among Armenians and Azerbaijanis and a process of self-criticism, reconciliation and emergence of a culture of co-existence. This would have positive effects on the Turkish-Armenian dispute about the 1915 events.       

Historyoftruth.com: What will be the results of ECHR decision on penalization of the denial of so called Armenian genocide?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: ECHR Grand Chamber’s decision on Perinçek v. Switzerland is a landmark. Its importance cannot be ignored, despite the efforts of the Armenians to cover it up.  ECHR Grand Chamber’s decision is truly important and positive for the confirmation of the significance of the freedom of expression in general meaning exceeding of the Perinçek v. Switzerland case.

A new tactic of the ‘genocide lobby’ has been to undermine, discredit, and delegitimize alternative views on 1915 events for some time. To tell the truth, the ‘genocide lobby’ has always avoided studying the cause-effect relations with respect to the 1915 events. For example, California-based Armenian-American historian Richard Hovannisinan never wanted public discussions on the cause-effect relations as he believed that would “rationalize” the 1915 events. Accordingly, what came to dominate the literature is low-quality propagandist studies of Richard Hovannisian, Vakahn Dadrian and his protégé Taner Akçam and alike people. The result is the ridiculous explanations of the 1915 events such as Muslims’ deep rooted outrage against Christians, a thesis forwarded by Dadrian, never fading Pan-Turkist dreams of the Turks, a thesis forwarded by Hovannisian, and similar arguments based on deliberately manipulated translations of the Ottoman documents as Akçam does. Certainly, there are some good studies on 1915 events, albeit very few in number.  

Lately, alternative scholarly works have begun to be published that question some of the constants of the ‘Armenian genocide literature’ and non-mainstream scholars and intellectuals have begun to challenge the mainstream. This created panic among the ‘genocide lobby’ and this lobby began to strive to criminalize alternative views that it cannot undermine, discredit or delegitimize. ECHR Grand Chamber’s decision has an utmost importance in this respect because after this decision alternative views will be expressed freely.

This will have a positive effect on the scholarship on 1915 events because it has long been known that unearthing absolute truths may not be possible in social  sciences but at least we can come closer to it only through free research and discussion.    

Historyoftruth.com:  How do you evaluate the relations between HDP and Armenian diaspora?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: HDP is a legal party in Turkish politics and won a little more than 10% of the votes in the latest elections. This means it represents a certain section of the Turkish population. Many people perceive HDP as a controversial party and probably this perception is not groundless. However, in a democracy there may be controversial views and such views can be represented in the political sphere.  

Although I am not aware of what is going on within the HDP decision-making circles, it can be seen that this party has constructed relations with the Armenian diaspora, particularly with the ARF-Dashnaksutyun circles. This is evident with the solidarity messages of the ARF-Dashnaksutyun organizations in Europe with HDP that called the Turkish voters to vote for HDP. On the other hand, in Turkey those who parrot the discourse and the rhetoric of the ‘genocide lobby’ are mostly the members or the sympathizers of HDP. In fact, the ‘genocide lobby’ in Turkey is mostly composed of pro-HDP people.

Here the critical question is what conditions HDP’s relations with the Armenian diaspora, particularly the ARF-Dashnaksutyun, and vice-versa. In my point of view, both view the other as a strategic ally to undermine the pillar of the Republic of Turkey. As it shall be obvious by now, radical Armenians deny the legitimacy of the Republic of Turkey. They argue that Turkey is an illegitimate state that was formed upon the ‘genocide’. Unfortunately, HDP’s discourse also comes close to this discourse. In short, the idea that “enemy of my enemy is my friend” links HDP to the radical sections of the Armenian diaspora.

Does this alliance have a future? Probably, not. First, it is because of geography. ‘Kurdistan’ and ‘Historical Armenia’ are the same land. Simply, the territory that is claimed by the Kurdish nationalists and radical Armenians are the same territory. So, who will have this territory; Kurds or Armenians?

Second, it is about history. One of the causes of the ‘Armenian question’ in the Ottoman Empire was the insults of the Kurds against the Armenians. When Armenians were relocated to Northern Syria, which was then the Ottoman territory, the unacceptable atrocities against Armenians were committed mostly by the Kurdish tribesmen. It was the Kurdish landlords that usurped the properties left by the Armenians. Will the Kurds still be sympathetic to Armenians, when the latter began forwarding material demands?  

On 12 October 2015, Amnesty International published a report on the forced displacements and demolitions in Northern Syria perpetrated against the civilians by the Kurdish PYD. On 3 November 2015, sixteen Assyrian and Armenian organizations in Syria issued a statement that protests Kurdish expropriation of private property, illegal military conscription and interference in church school curricula in Hasaka province in Syria. I believe, these give some idea about the real substance and future of the Armenian-Kurdish relations.   

Historyoftruth.com:  Do you expect Armenian issue to affect Turkish American relations again in the near future?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: Presently, there are issues much more important for the US than the Armenian issue such as the situation in Middle East, Ukraine and so on. To be frank, Armenian issue is a minor issue for the US. Moreover, American political elite have diverse views on this issue.

I think there is a significant difference between American and European foreign policy orientations. On the contrary to the Europeans, Americans are much less prejudiced and much more realistic and pragmatic. For this reason, I believe the USA will not make an uncalculated move out of prejudices.This is a continuity that we see in American foreign policy.

Few weeks ago, in Armenia I had the chance to listen an American official serving at the US Embassy in Yerevan at a Turkish-Armenian reconciliation event. He clearly stated that it is Armenia who needs a better conduct with Turkey and for that Armenia has to take a step in that direction. I think this statement demonstrates the American approach.

Having said these, it has also to bore in mind that ‘genocide issue’ is a card in the hand of third-party states including the US to bluff Turkey. We must come to terms with this reality. My personal opinion is that if the US or any other country takes a step against Turkey’s interests, Turkey should retaliate. This is how the game of politics is played. Given the current situation in the Middle East and American interests with that respect, Turkey has some assets to do that.       

Historyoftruth.com:  Do you expect changes in Turkish Armenian relations in near future?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I do not expect any dramatic changes in practice. Yet, I do believe that the discourse and the rhetoric of the Armenians that was brought out in 2015 may, and should, direct Turkey to revise some of its policies vis-à-vis Armenia. For some years, Turkey tried to create a new climate of empathy and understanding between Turks and Armenians by expressing its grief for the 1915 events. “Fair memory” that refers to acknowledgment of the common pain that Turks and Armenians suffered from has been the motto and the main concept of this approach.

In 2015, we have seen that this approach had no echo among the Armenians. Realistically speaking, this approach has failed. If Turkish policy makers make a similar evaluation, we may expect a new discourse and rhetoric in the post-2015 era.

A new strategy of the ‘genocide lobby’ is to start legal processes against Turkey for compensations. I expect Turkey to begin studying the legal aspects of the dispute.

All in all, I do not think there will be a breakthrough in Turkish-Armenian relations but there will be new issues that both sides will emphasize more than they did before.        

Historyoftruth.com:  Do you think Armenians achieved their goals for the 100th year of 1915 incidents?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: This is relative and the answer depends on from which angle you look at the issue. Pope Francis’ speech at the Holy Mass at St.Peter’s Basilica on 12 April 2015 and European Parliament’s resolution on 15 April 2015 were important achievements for the ‘genocide lobby’. Other than that, some parliaments made declaration that recognize 1915 events as genocide or reaffirmed their previous declarations. ‘Genocide lobby’ represented these as great victories. Here the issue is psychological warfare and propaganda wars. I, personally, do not think there have been very significant developments other than Pope’s speech and the European Parliament’s resolution. I do not pay much attention to what Kim Kardashian or George Clooney do or say, although I admire the artistic talents of the latter. Neither do I take seriously what the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino) approves.

As to parliament resolutions, I would like to remind you of the back steps of Luxembourg, Austria and Germany. These countries in one way or another denounced declarations of their parliaments made in the first half of 2015. These are tried to be hidden away by the ‘genocide lobby’.

There have been two other very consequential developments in 2015 that were also tried to be hidden away. The first one is the judgement of the ECHR on 16 June 2015 on “Azerbaijani refugees’ rights violated by lack of access to their property located in district controlled by Armenia”. With this verdict, ECHR confirmed that the de facto Armenian authority in Karabakh is in fact not an independent entity and Karabakh is under the “effective control” of Armenia. This means the confirmation of the Armenian occupation of Azerbaijani land. This determination invalidates the Armenian thesis of “self- determination” and this is a great blow to the Armenian arguments. Second one is the Perinçek v. Switzerland case at the ECHR that you mentioned. The judgement of the ECHR on this case confirmed the illegality of criminalization of diverse views on 1915 events as another serious blow to the Armenian position.

Historyoftruth.com:  What can Turkey do to present its historical thesis better in the international arena?

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel: I am not a historian. I study the Turkish-Armenian dispute as a political issue and perceive “genocide allegations” as a political tool.

To me, Turkey needs to make it clear that genocide is strictly a legal term defined the 1948 Genocide Convention. Only a competent court defined by the Convention can judge whether 1915 events can be characterized as genocide or not. So far, no such court has made such a judgement. Turkey has to explain this very basic fact to the global community. Besides that, Turkey needs to explain that “genocide allegations” are not about history, but about politics.

As to Turkey’s “historical thesis”, I do not think Turkey should have a “historical thesis”. Turkey should have a political position. History is a science that shall be studied by the scholars, not by states. Turkey may facilitate historical research by providing scholarships and other opportunities to conduct research on 1915 events. Moreover, Turkey may encourage the discussion of different aspects of the 1915 events in national and international platform. That would be important given that the Armenians strive to prevent such discussions. I think advanced historical research will uncover many hidden or unknown aspects of 1915 events and if that happens we will face with a different account of these events.   

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A NEW PUBLICATION BY AVIM: ARMENIAN DIASPORA

Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel's book Armenian Diaspora has been published by AVIM.

It is an often observed and commented case that the Armenian diaspora - dispersed and settled around the world - is able to play a role in the shaping of the policy making of the Armenian government, and that it can especially influence and even block Turkey-Armenia relations. In spite of this, few research or academic work has been done on the Armenian diaspora beyond quantitative data.

It can be foreseen that Dr. Turgut Kerem Tuncel’s book titled Armenian Diaspora, published by Center for Eurasian Studies (AVIM), will contribute to the remedying of the deficiency on this subject. Dr. Tuncel’s book seeks to impartially inform its readers about such topics as the current state of the Armenian diaspora, its approach to Armenia, and identity formation and the basis of this formation in the diaspora. For this reason, it is hoped that the book will be of benefit to both the academic community and policy practitioners.

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