2008-11-06 | News
UNHCR Convenes National Consultations to Jointly Find Ways to Improve Refugee Protection in Armenia

Today, on the 6th of November the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Government of the Republic of Armenia, European Union, the United Nations family, diplomatic missions, international, local and non-government organisations as well as refugees gathered at Marriott Armenia hotel for two-day National Consultations to discuss migration and asylum issues with the objective of further strengthening the capacity of the Republic of Armenia in the area of refugee protection.

National Consultations organised by UNHCR, is a follow up to the comprehensive study ‘Analysis of Gaps in the Protection of Refugees and Asylum Seekers’, jointly conducted by UNHCR and the State Migration Agency with the financial support of the European Union. The study is undertaken on the heels of Armenia’s signing of the European Neighbourhood Policy programme, which sets out strategic objectives of cooperation between Armenia and the European Union for the 2007-2013 time period.

Among various legal issues to be addressed such as admission, Refugee Status Determination, and status related issues, the study further identifies the unmet socio-economic and cultural needs of refugees that hinder their full local integration in Armenia. ‘’In the context of Armenia where the majority of refugees cannot return to their home country in safety and dignity, sustainable full local integration is the preferred durable solution for them. Integration demands commitment from each and everyone of us”, UNHCR Armenia Representative, Ms. Bushra Halepota stated in her opening speech. “At today’s National Consultations we will discuss and highlight the unmet needs of refugees and asylum seekers in Armenia and will make recommendations on the ways to jointly address those needs to find durable solutions to them”, added UNHCR Representative.

The National Consultations represent a joint effort of all the stakeholders and aim to develop practical mechanisms and approaches for strengthening the capacity to receive and protect refugees in Armenia.

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