While Armenia is grieving over the loss of the 44-day war against Azerbaijan, Russia and Turkey are celebrating another painful anniversary — the Treaty of Moscow of 1921 — which formalized the border between Armenia and Turkey, sealing the fate of historic Armenia. The recent centennial celebration of the Treaty of Moscow, signed on March 16, 1921, began in the Turkish Parliament on March 15, with the participation of the Russian ambassador to Ankara, Alexei Yerkhov.
The speaker of the Turkish Parliament, Mustafa Sentop, stated that “Russia is not only our neighbor, but also our friend and cooperation partner, on the way to the future.” Russia returned the compliment by congratulating Turkey on the two countries’ century of diplomatic ties, adding, “Today the [bilateral relations] are experiencing a rise, steadily moving to the level of strategic partnership in a number of areas and serve as an important factor in strengthening regional stability and security.” The celebration and congratulatory messages were occasioned on the centennial anniversary of the Treaty of Moscow of 1921, which was later finalized in Kars on October 13, 1921. Russian and Turkish relations have historically improved at Armenia’s expense.
The Treaty of Moscow finalized the current border between Armenia and Turkey, without Armenia’s participation. Later on, when Soviet rule was firmly installed in Armenia, the central government forced Armenia to sign the Kars Treaty. As if international intrigues were not enough to disenfranchise the fledgling Republic of Armenia in its external relations, a domestic uprising in Yerevan denied Armenia its participation in the negotiations leading to the conclusion of the Treaty of Moscow. Soviet rule was established in Armenia on December 2, 1920 and the new government had dispatched its delegation to participate in Moscow negotiations. While the delegation was on its way, an uprising took place by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktstutyun) Party on February 18, 1921, and for almost a month and a half, the Salvation Committee headed by the last prime minister of independent Armenia, Simon Vratsian, took the helm of the government and wired Moscow that the delegation did not represent the revolutionary government.