Turkey calls on Armenia to help 'build peace'

Prime minister also calls for return of Nagorno-Karabakh to Azerbaijan

Baku. 6 May. REPORT.AZ/ Speaking at an election rally in Kars province, which borders Armenia, Ahmet Davutoglu called for the two countries to help create a “new Caucasus.”

Relations between Turkey and Armenia have been poor since World War I, when a portion of the Armenian population living in the Ottoman Empire sided with invading Russian forces. The resulting relocations of Armenians from eastern Anatolia led to many deaths.

Armenians say that those casualties amount to "genocide", a claim Turkey has always refuted, pointing out that many Armenians and Turks lost their lives in the tragedy.

"Let's solve our differences and discuss the history,” Davutoglu told supporters of his ruling Justice and Development Party. “Let's build peace and a new Caucasus."

Turkey has called for a joint commission to discover what happened in 1915. Both Davutoglu and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have expressed their condolences to the families of all Ottoman citizens killed.

Davutoglu also called on Armenia to “immediately withdraw” from Nagorno-Karabakh, a de jure part of Azerbaijan but has been under Armenian occupation for more than two decades.

"Let's leave there and return those territories to their true owners," Davutoglu said.

Sunday’s Nagorno-Karabakh parliamentary election was condemned by Turkey as a “violation of international law.” The U.S. and Azerbaijan also refused to accept the result.

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