Sep 25th 2008
Rising hopes of better relations between two historic enemies
KEMAL ATATURK , father of modern Turkey, rescued hundreds of Armenian women and children from mass slaughter by Ottoman forces during and after the first world war. This untold story, which is sure to surprise many of today’s Turks, is one of many collected by the Armenian genocide museum in Yerevan that “will soon be brought to light on our website,” promises Hayk Demoyan, its director.
His project is one more example of shifting relations between Turkey and Armenia. On September 6th President Abdullah Gul became the first Turkish leader to visit Armenia when he attended a football match. Mr Gul’s decision to accept an invitation from Armenia’s president, Serzh Sarkisian, has raised expectations that Turkey may establish diplomatic ties and open the border it closed during the 1990s fighting between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh. The two foreign ministers were planning to meet in New York this week. Armenia promises to recognise Turkey’s borders and to allow a commission of historians to investigate the fate of the Ottoman Armenians.