YEREVAN (PanArmenian)—Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian is obligated by law to submit the Armenia-Turkey protocols to parliament with the reservations presented by the Constitutional Court, Ara Papian, the head of the Modus Vivendi Center , said Wednesday.
On January 12, Armenia’s Constitutional Court upheld the constitutionality of the protocols, adding, however, that the documents cannot have any connection with the ongoing Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution process or impede Armenia of its pursuit of international recognition of the Armenia Genocide. To reinforce the latter point, the Court referenced Article 11 of Armenia’s Declaration of Independence, which states: “The Republic of Armenia stands in support of the task of achieving international recognition of the 1915 Genocide in Ottoman Turkey and Western Armenia.”
Papian, who served as Armenia’s Ambassador to Canada from 2000-2006, explained that the President is bound by the Armenian Constitution to uphold the legal reasoning of the court.
“His representatives must submit the Protocols with reservations to the National Assembly for ratification,” he said. ”Not doing it means not implementing the Constitutional Court decision of which is obligatory for the President and RA minister of foreign affairs.”
The court ruling was met with rebuke in Turkey with Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutolgu and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan warning that the reservation’s submitted by the court could derail the entire fence-mending process started in 2008.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry Tuesday released a statement saying the court ruling “impairs the letter and spirit of the Protocols.”
“The decision undermines the very reason for negotiating these Protocols as well as their fundamental objective. This approach cannot be accepted on our part,” the Ministry said. “Turkey, in line with its accustomed allegiance to its international commitments, maintains its adherence to the primary provisions of these Protocols. We expect the same allegiance from the Armenian Government.”
Papian described Turkey’s reaction as “a direct and flagrant interference in Armenia’s internal affairs.”
”If Armenia’s leadership does not give an adequate response to the statement by the Turkish Foreign Ministry, it would mean that we accept that Turkey considers Armenia as a colony,” he added.