Two EuFoA events on the upcoming parliamentary elections in Armenia
On 27 March 2012 European Friends of Armenia held two roundtables at EuFoA's office dedicated to the upcoming parliamentary elections in Armenia. During the first one, Dr Michael Kambeck, Mr Hovhannes Grigoryan (Director of IPSC) and Dr Steve Schwarzer (Methodology and Statistics Manager at TNS opinion) presented the results of the opinion poll entitled "Poll: A Snapshot of Pre-Electoral Armenia". During the second event, the German Ambassador in Armenia H.E. Mr Hans-Jochen Schmidt joined the audience to share his views on the pre-electoral political situation in Armenia.
Presentation of the poll
Background on the poll: on 19 December 2011, EuFoA has issued an international call for proposals searching for partners to conduct and supervise a public poll of voters in Armenia. TNS Opinions won the tender for quality control and supervision and in co-operation with the local partner IPSC and us, the poll was conducted. The fieldwork was done between 29 February and 4 March 2012. EuFoA has commissioned the poll for several reasons. In particular we want to:
• Raise public awareness about the elections, issues important for the people, and public attitudes towards politics, political parties and their leaders.
• Compare the results of the poll with those of the "benchmark poll", commissioned by EuFoA in October 2010.
• Contribute to a more meaningful debate, based on political content more than party political propaganda and myths.
• Increase public transparency and trust in a realistic picture of political life in Armenia.
• Increase pressure for a good technical conduct of the elections by providing comparative data for the assessments of international observers.
Round table with the German Ambassador
Since 23 October 2009 H. E. Hans-Jochen Schmidt is the successor to Andrea Joana-Maria Wiktorin as Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in Armenia. Previous to that, he was Head of the OSCE Office in Minsk. He joined the diplomatic service in 1977 and since then, he held various executive positions in many countries like Egypt, Zaire, and United States but returned to the headquarters of the Foreign Office between 1992 and 1996.
In his speech, H.E. Hans-Jochen Schmidt addressed the political and economic interests the EU and an EU Member State like Germany has in the South Caucasus region, as well as the political importance the EU attaches to the upcoming parliamentary elections in Armenia.