By Kasim Ileri
CHICAGO, US (AA) - A new page has been opened in history with Azerbaijan’s liberation of the Karabakh region, Turkey’s presidential spokesman said Sunday
Ibrahim Kalin was speaking at a meeting hosted by Turkey’s Ambassador to the US, Hasan Murat Mercan, and Chicago Consul General Engin Türesin.
Kalin also met with Turkish citizens living in the US at the Turkish Consulate General in Chicago, where he went to attend the annual MAS-ICNA Convention, one of the largest Islamic conventions in North America.
Noting that relations between Turkey and the US are critical enough to develop a strategic partnership perspective, Kalin said: “But we have seen that approaches that ignore Turkey's threat perception and the threats we face are also implemented by the American administrations.”
He said in the fight against terrorism, Turkey expects US administrations to be at the level, scope and depth Ankara expects.
Kalin went on to say that the US’s continued support of the YPG/PKK terrorist organization in Syria, its sanctions against Turkey over its purchase of Russia’s S-400 air defense systems, its removal of Turkey from the F-35 program and its attitude towards the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) are the main disagreements between the two countries.
However, he said that in addition to the controversial issues, there are also areas in which Turkey and the US continue to work and agree.
In response to a question on the Armenian lobby’s activities in the US against Turkey, Kalin highlighted that now there is a different process in the Caucasus that is about to collapse the Armenian diaspora's arguments.
"In other words, the Turkey-Armenia or Turkish-Armenian conflict, it is coming to an end in the Caucasus. With the liberation of Karabakh, with its independence and joining Azerbaijani lands, a new page in history has opened there," he stressed.
Kalin also reminded that Turkey and Armenia have taken steps to normalize relations and the normalization process will make a great contribution to Armenia both politically and economically.
- Liberation of Karabakh
Relations between the former Soviet republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia have been tense since 1991, when the Armenian military occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, also known as Upper Karabakh, a territory internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, and seven adjacent regions.
When new clashes erupted on Sept. 27, 2020, the Armenian army launched attacks on civilians and Azerbaijani forces and violated several humanitarian cease-fire agreements.
During the 44-day conflict, Azerbaijan liberated several cities and nearly 300 settlements and villages from the nearly three-decade occupation.
On Nov. 10 last year, the two countries signed a Russian-brokered agreement to end the fighting and work toward a comprehensive resolution.
On Jan. 11, the leaders of Russia, Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a pact to develop economic ties and infrastructure to benefit the entire region. It included the establishment of a trilateral working group on Karabakh.
The cease-fire is seen as a victory for Azerbaijan and a defeat for Armenia, whose armed forces withdrew in line with the agreement.
Prior to this victory, about 20% of Azerbaijan's territory had been under illegal occupation for nearly 30 years.