July 21, 2023
The Advisory Opinion of the EU-Armenia Civil Society Platform was Discussed.

On 21 July, the advisory opinions developed by the Armenian members of the EU-Armenia Civil Society Platform were discussed with the representatives of the Government and other stakeholders.

Deputy Prime Minister Mher Girgoryan, H.E. Andrea Wiktorin, Ambassador, Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, and Ms Lousineh Hakobyan welcomed the participants of the event.

Deputy Prime Minister Grigoryan thanked the partners from the EU-Armenia Civil Society Platform for the work done and stressed the importance of institutional cooperation established between the Government and civil society in the framework of CEPA implementation.

Ambassador Wiktorin emphasized the role of civil society in monitoring CEPA implementation and the need to do that in a participatory manner by taking note of the past efforts of civil society in this respect.

Ms. Lousineh Hakobyan stressed the intention of the Platform to consolidate the past efforts of the monitoring of CEPA implementation made by the Partnership for Open Society, the Anti-Corruption Coalition, etc.

In addition to this, Lousineh Hakobyan noted that the Platform attached great importance to monitoring the CEPA obligations in the field of democracy, the rule of law, and human rights as essential elements of the Agreement. In this regard, concerns were expressed in connection with the recent developments, including the expedited procedure of dismissal of the Chairperson of the NA Standing Committee on Human Rights for allegedly not protecting the dignity of the Armenian people in one of the sessions of the Committee and failure to give any assessment to the behavior of the Secretary of the ruling faction in the same session. She noted inter alia other instances of selective justice in the judiciary and the disciplinary proceedings against certain judges for exercising their right to freedom of expression.

She further stressed the importance of the decision of the RA Constitutional Court on finding the obligations enshrined in the Rome Statute compliant with the Constitution and expressed hope for its speedy ratification to meet the obligations under CEPA.

She finally thanked Ambassador Wiktorin for standing by Armenia at a time that was very challenging for the Armenian State.

The advisory opinions entitled ‘Study of International and Armenian Legislation and Practice in the Field of Anti-Corruption Education and Conflict of Interests in the Light of the CEPA Obligations,’ developed by Ms. Syuzanna Soghomonyan, anti-corruption expert, ‘Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Employment in Armenia’ by Mr Gagik Makaryan, President of the Republican Union of Employers and ‘Freedom of Association and Social Partnership in Armenia’ by Ms. Tiruhi Nazaretyan, Anna Barikyan and Arsen Igityan, representatives of the Confederation of the Trade Unions of Armenia were discussed in three separate sessions. The sessions were followed by Q&A directed at the discussion of recommendations and observations made by participants on the developed advisory opinions.