YEREVAN (RFE/RL)–Armenia’s leading business association and three local civic groups said on Wednesday that they will work together in maintaining continued contacts between Armenian and Turkish societies.

They said they hope to thereby contribute to the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations which has stalled because of serious disagreements between the governments in Ankara and Yerevan.

In a joint statement, the four organizations said they will “coordinate their projects implemented in this area” and formulate common positions on “further developments in Turkish-Armenian relations.” Gevorg Ter-Gabrielian, head of the Yerevan-based Eurasia Partnership Foundation, said the non-governmental “consortium” plans to draw up a plan of joint actions as he spoke at a joint news conferences with representatives of the other groups involved in the initiative.

Those are the Armenian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, the Yerevan Press Club (YPC) and the International Center for Human Development (ICHD). All four signatories to the statement have been closely involved in Turkish-Armenian civil-society and business contacts mostly financed by the U.S. government over the past decade.

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