© AP Photo / Burhan Ozbilici
ANKARA, April 24 – RIA Novosti, Fedor Smirnov. Turkey shares the pain of the Armenian people in connection with the tragic events of 1915, said in a written statement of President Tayyip Erdogan, read at the liturgy, which was held in Friday Armenian Patriarchate in Istanbul on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the tragedy.
Liturgy is held in the church of St Mary the Virgin in Istanbul. For the first time in such an event officially participating members of the Turkish Government – Minister for EU Affairs Volkan Bozkır.
“We are aware of the sad events experienced by the Armenian community in the past. I sincerely share your pain. I want you to know – our hearts are open to all descendants of the Ottoman Armenians “, – the statement says Erdogan.
Armenia in 2015, remembers the victims of the Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire. In the country are invited to high-level delegations from around the world to pay tribute to the victims of the tragedy. The main ceremonies are held on Friday.
In the late XIX – early XX century in the Ottoman Empire carried harassment and persecution of Armenians who reached the peak in 1915. Armenia insists on the recognition by the international community of the Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire. Turkey has traditionally rejected the accusations, claiming that the victims of the tragedy of 1915 were both Armenians and Turks. Acute response of Ankara on the process of international recognition of the 1915 Genocide in the Ottoman Empire is one of the main reasons for the complex relations between Turkey and Armenia.