Ahmadinejad to visit Armenia as economic and political ties grow

October 22, 2007 11:11

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrives Monday on his first official visit to the Armenian capital as the two neighboring countries steadily strengthen economic and political ties. Ahmadinejad was to meet with Armenian President Robert Kocharian, address the Armenian parliament and speak with professors and students at Armenian State University. The Iranian leader also was to step into the controversy over the World War I-era killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turks by laying a wreath at the memorial complex commemorating the victims. Scholars view the killing of 1.5 million Armenians, who are Christians, as the first genocide of the 20th century. But an attempt in the United States to recognize the killings as genocide has angered Turkey, which says the toll has been inflated and that those killed were victims of civil war and unrest.

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