Friday, May 14, 2010

Armenia needs a clear roadmap of reforms in order to consolidate democracy

PACE President Mevlüt Çavusoglu has visited Armenia on 12-13 May and has met the President of the Republic Serzh Sargsyan, the Speaker of Parliament Hovik Abrahamyan, most political forces represented in Parliament, the PACE delegation, the Human Rights Defender, the National Commission for Radio and Television, NGOs and the extra-parliamentary opposition. He also met relatives of victims of the events of 1-2 March 2008.

Developing and strengthening the fundamental principles and values that unite the Council of Europe member states -democracy, human rights and the rule of law-, he said, was not only important for Armenia and for its citizens, but also for the peace and stability of the region and the whole of Europe.

The discussions with all Armenian interlocutors have concentrated on the most important reforms that are needed in the country and PACE President has called on the Armenian authorities to establish a roadmap for the implementation of the reforms recommended by the Assembly: electoral reform, reform of the police and in the justice sector, improvements in the field of freedom of assembly and freedom of the media, fight against corruption.

Another part of the discussions focused on the role that the Council of Europe and its Parliamentary Assembly can play in preventing and overcoming conflicts within and between member states. Regarding the Nagorno Karabakh issue, President Çavusoglu said that both Armenia and Azerbaijan have a duty to comply with the recommendations made by the Parliamentary Assembly and to report to it on the progress made.

PACE President also insisted on two outstanding issues that have not yet received a satisfactory solution: individual justice being made for those held responsible for the March 2008 events and the issue of persons detained in relation to those events.

Finally, President Çavusoglu did congratulate Armenia for hosting this year's Forum for the Future of Democracy hoping to take part in the Forum in October 2010.

Source: PACE. Published on 14 May 2010

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