Public discussion on the Action Plan for the Protection of Human Rights

16/11/2018 Font

Today, Acting Minister of Justice of the Republic of Armenia Artak Zeynalyan participated in the public discussion on the 2017-2019 Action Plan arising from the National Strategy for the Protection of Human Rights. Head of the EU Delegation to the Republic of Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Świtalski; UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative for the Republic of Armenia Shombi Sharp; Deputy Minister of Justice of the Republic of Armenia and Co-ordinator of the Action Plan Vigen Kocharyan, as well as representatives of other government agencies, the Staff of the Human Rights Defender, international organisations and civil society representatives also participated in the public discussion.

The discussion was organised within the scope of the EU-funded “Promotion and Protection of Human Rights” project, which is implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the United Nations Population Fund and the UNICEF.

Artak Zeynalyan expressed his gratitude to the European Union and the United Nations for helping organise the public discussion, attached importance to the step to introduce the institution of holding regular public discussions in the project approved in 2017 and assured that public discussions in the field of human rights protection contribute to the strengthening of control by civil society over the activities carried out by state bodies. According to the Acting Minister, the velvet, non-violent revolution that took place in Armenia in the spring of this year need to be turned into institutional reforms, viewing protection of the fundamental rights and freedoms of a human being and the citizen as a priority. "In this process, I attach great importance to the involvement and direct participation of civil society in decision-making processes, to the implementation of changes and to restructuring of the system. Only through joint efforts will we be able to fulfil our desire of having the country of our dreams, a country where the human being will really be the highest value and where respect for and protection of his or her main rights and freedoms will be viewed as the major obligation of the public authorities,” Artak Zeynalyan said and emphasised that the Ministry of Justice has launched the process of reviewing the Action Plan, enabling state bodies and civil society to submit their recommendations.

The Acting Minister expressed willingness to materialise and realise the vision of the Government for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms in Armenia through the joint efforts with international partners.

Ambassador Świtalski reaffirmed that the European Union attaches importance to the strengthening of human rights protection in Armenia, which is reflected in the Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement signed between the European Union and Armenia. He also emphasised that it was necessary to ensure broader involvement of civil society in monitoring and assessment.

UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative Shombi Sharp also expressed willingness to assist the Government in implementing the actions of the Reviewed Strategy for the Protection of Human Rights, significantly improving the sector and developing a new Action Plan for the Protection of Human Rights.

Afterwards, the report on the improvement of monitoring of the Action Plan for the Protection of Human Rights and the reporting system, as well as the reports on implementation of the actions in the second semester of 2017 and the first semester of 2018 of the Action Plan were presented to the participants of the public discussion.

The public discussion will also continue on 17 November.

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