As Turkey and Armenia Inch Toward Reconciliation, Both Sides Talk the Talk, But Can They Walk the Walk?
When Turkey's President Abdullah Gül took the plunge on September 6 and became the first ever Turkish leader to set foot in Armenia, few were immune to the significance of the moment. Even Turkey's determinedly frosty diplomats began to thaw as they observed their president sitting next to his Armenian counterpart Serzh Sargsyan at the World Cup pre-qualifier football match pitting Turkey against Armenia.
The groundbreaking trip has raised expectations that after decades of mutual hostility Turkey and Armenia will bury the hatchet, establish formal ties, and re-open their borders. Hopes of a breakthrough have been heightened by the conflict in Georgia, which has refocused regional minds on the need for peace. Yet, amid all the euphoria there are worrying signs that this latest and most serious stab at reconciliation between Turkey and Armenia may come to naught.