Turkish-Armenian Relations: Will Football Diplomacy Work?
By Bülent Aras & Fatih Özbay
SETA Policy Brief, No. 24, September 2008
The Georgian-Russian crisis, the political and economic alienation of Armenia in the Caucasus, Turkey’s new project to establish the Caucasus Stability Platform, and the Turkish and Armenian administrations’ willingness to normalize relations have created a suitable atmosphere in which to put an end to the problems between Turkey and Armenia. Turkish President Abdullah Gul accepted the invitation of his counterpart, Armenian President Serge Sarkisian, to watch the World Cupqualifying football match between Turkey and Armenia in Yerevan. This visit was considered an important symbolic move. It will be a matter of time to see whether this ‘football diplomacy’ will pave the way for the normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia.