Turkish First Lady Emine Erdoğan and Azeri President Ilham Aliyev were caught cheerfully discussing the number of Armenian prisoners of war on camera, Turkish-Armenian media outlet Agos reported on June 16.
The footage shared on social media shows Aliyev talking about retrieving the map of minefields in exchange for Armenian prisoners of war.
"We'd have a great advantage if we get the maps. It could take 10 years to clear all the mines because there are mines everywhere," Aliyev says, before Emine Erdoğan asks whether there are any more prisoners.
Erdoğan's smiles were spotted when Aliyev confirms that there are more.
"Step by step, step by step," Erdoğan was heard saying as she smiled.
Aliyev: If we get all the maps of the minefields we will have great advantage, because every place is mined, it may take 10 years [to remove them]— 301🇦🇲 (@301_AD) June 15, 2021
Erdogan's wife: Are there any more prisoners?
Aliyev: Yes, yes, there are many of them.
Armenian analyst Alin Ozinian slammed the dialogue, saying that it's unacceptable for a first lady to talk about the prisoners of war so insensitively.
"Even though the attitude of Azerbaijan and Turkey towards Armenia after the war and ceasefire was claimed to be peaceful, it wasn't. We saw this in various instances. The fact that Emine Erdoğan asked about the prisoners of war as if she is talking about something very simple is very disturbing," Ozinian told Bianet news portal.
"The situation of the prisoners of war is painful, not just for the Armenia-Azerbaijan war, but in general," she added.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan lent significant support to Azerbaijan against Armenia during the recent Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the Turkish President also attended Azerbaijan's victory parade alongside his counterpart, Ilham Aliyev, in Baku on Dec. 10, 2020.