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MOSCOW, April 22. /TASS/. The Kremlin hopes that Ankara will regard with understanding the upcoming visit of President Vladimir Putin to Armenia’s capital Yerevan to participate in the events in memory of the 1915 Armenian genocide.
"In this regard, there was a conversation between leaders of the two countries and [Turkish President] Recep Tayyip Erdogan knows well about Putin’s plans to go to Armenia and this is well known that the country will be represented there at a rather high level on April 24 in Turkey," presidential aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters on Wednesday.
On that day, Turkey will hold the events marking the 100th anniversary of the Dardanelles Campaign, one of the greatest Ottoman victories during World War I. Russia will be represented there by the speaker of the lower house of parliament, the State Duma, Sergey Naryshkin.
Putin’s visit to the Armenian capital comes at the invitation of President Serzh Sargsyan. The Russian president will fly to Yerevan late on Thursday and all the events marking the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire will be held on April 24.
"As far as we know, the memorial ceremonies will be attended by the representatives of more than 20 countries, including the presidents of France, Cyprus and Serbia who like our president will make an address at the memorial ceremony," Ushakov said.
The Russian president has earlier visited the memorial of the genocide in Armenia in September 2001 and during the state visit in December 2013. This year’s program will include the visit to the memorial complex, the address at the ceremony and a state dinner on behalf of the Armenian president.
The Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day is traditionally marked on April 24. According to various estimates, in 1915-1916 more than 1.5 million Armenians were killed in Turkey and more than 600,000 people were forcibly relocated to the barren regions of Mesopotamia. Some 300,000 Armenians found shelter in Russia, Ushakov said.
The 100th anniversary has a great historic and spiritual importance for the brotherly nation of Armenia and the Russian-Armenian diaspora, which is estimated at around 3 million people.
This date is remembered in Russia, where more than 2,000 commemorative events will be held in hundreds of Russian cities. Russia’s lower house of parliament, the State Duma, also plans to adopt a special statement on occasion of the 100th anniversary on April 24.