European Commission annual report sees progress in EU-Armenia relations
The European Commission today published its annual progress report about EU-Armenia relations in the context of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP). The report concludes positively, given the politically difficult internal situation in Armenia in 2008.
European Friends of Armenia (EuFoA) welcomes the acknowledgment of the overall progress as an encouragement for more progress in 2009. With the Eastern Partnership, the EU has stepped up its commitments and the perspective it offers to Armenia. Both sides need to seize the opportunities this offers to stabilise the region and promote prosperity and trade.
The report contains one passage which could be misleading to outsiders, referring to "the consequences of the internal crisis in the aftermath of Presidential elections in February 2008". While these consequences were severe, with a state of emergency and infringements to the freedom of press, the report forgets to point out that they were temporary and mostly removed after very few days.
However, other passages of the report acknowledge the progress achieved in Armenia after the March crisis, for example to "strengthen the Human Rights Defender" and "improving transparency of the government's decision-making process and cooperation with NGOs and civil society". The last point is naturally particularly important to EuFoA and its partners in Armenia.
Below you find the full Armenia country report for 2008 as published by the European Commission today.