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AGBU EUROPE’S EFFORTS TOWARDS THE ENGAGEMENT OF NKR IN EU INSTITUTIONS

AGBU Europe Chairman Alexis Govciyan elected member of the Ile de France regional council

Chairman of AGBU Europe Alexis Govciyan, AGBU Europe Board member responsible for relations with EU institutions Nicolas Tavitian, and AGBU Armenian Representation Director Ashot Ghazarian held a press conference on May 24 at the AGBU Armenian Representation in Yerevan. The press conference raised three main issues: the recent election of Alexis Govciyan as a member of the Ile de France regional council, the recent resolution of the European Parliament on South Caucasus and AGBU Europe's activities in this direction, and the “Pro-Democratia: Youth Seminar for Democracy and Civil Society Reinforcement” conducted in Yerevan within AGBU Europe’s “Goriz” program from May 20-24.

After a short introduction by AGBU Armenian Representation Director Ashot Ghazarian, Mr. Govciyan presented the activities of AGBU Europe. “One of the important directions of our activities is the active lobbying within EU institutions in favor of Karabakh. The goal of these activities is to make the EU become more actively involved in Karabakh and to make the EU institutions accept Karabakh as a state”, said Mr. Govciyan. The other non-recognized states in the region benefit from some form of international peacekeeping, are involved in some form of internationally funded projects, particularly confidence-building projects to help reduce tensions, and their residents enjoy contacts with other countries. That's not the case with Karabakh. In fact, Karabakh is the only part of the region, which the EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus, Peter Semneby, has not visited. Thanks to the efforts of AGBU Europe the NKR delegation participated in a recent conference on Karabakh, which took place in Paris with the participation of Peter Semneby.

AGBU Europe’s campaign is to press the European Union to provide humanitarian and development assistance to Nagorno Karabakh. AGBU Europe also calls for the EU to allow its officials to travel to Karabakh. “The European institutions, particularly the EU, are not well-aware of the Karabakh issue. We have a lot to do in this sphere. Azerbaijan's tangible resources and lasting ongoing campaign have created a biased outlook towards the Karabakh issue in the European Union”, said the AGBU Europe Chairman. Speaking about European Parliament’s recent resolution Alexis Govciyan emphasized that the Karabakh-related section of the resolution is unacceptable for Armenia. However, as Mr. Govciyan noted, this is the first time that the European structures spoke about Karabakh as a separate unit on a political level. “If the EU speaks about Karabakh, it also has to send its representatives to Karabakh to get acquainted with the situation on the spot. Our next step is to establish contact between the EU institutions and the NKR authorities and the people”, Mr. Govciyan said. Among the recent achievements of AGBU Europe Alexis Govciyan highlighted the organization of the visit of the NKR government representatives to Brussels and their meeting with the European Commission.

Mr. Govciyan also spoke about his recent election as a member of the Ile de France regional council. “My main activities will be directed towards the establishment of cooperation between Armenia and Ile de France in different spheres, including education, particularly with the French University of Armenia, and defense. I will be acting as a citizen of France but at the same I will remain faithful to my Armenian roots”, Mr. Govciyan said. Ile de France is an area of major significance with 8 bln euro annual budget and 15 million population.

AGBU Europe Board member Nicolas Tavitian referred to the current unfavorable NK processes in the EU. “Armenian Diaspora also has its share of guilt in this, and it has to work hard towards making the EU become more supportive of Karabakh, like it is with South Ossetia, Abkhazia and Kosovo. Today, the EU does not support the process of peaceful regulation of the Karabakh conflict. It is our duty to introduce the Karabakh case to the representatives of the European structures. Then we can expect positive solutions”, said Nicolas Tavitian. He also spoke about AGBU Europe’s “Goriz” program.

 

 

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