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Access to justice in the environmental field

On September 11, the employees of the Armenian Aarhus Centers have participated in the workshop, initiated by the OSCE Office in Yerevan, which was aimed at discussing access to justice related to environmental issues.

The aim of the event was to create an opportunity for the sector specialists to share their experiences, to outline the challenges and to propose possible ways to more effectively promote the Aarhus Convention principles related to environmental issues; access to information, participation in decision-making processes and access to justice.

First Deputy Minister of Nature Protection Mr. Simon Papyan also emphasized the work of the OSCE Office in Yerevan to promote the implementation of the Aarhus Convention, in particular through the establishment of the Aarhus Centres. Stressing the importance of such measures and the involvement of experts in terms of solving the problems on the way to the Aarhus Convention implementation, he said that the system still needs improvement. He wished the participants of the workshop fruitful work on behalf of the minister Mr. A. Grigoryan.

The Human Rights Officer of the OSCE Office in Yerevan Mrs. Radka Rubilinan, who is temporarily in charge of the Office of Economic and Environmental activities, also welcomed the workshop participants. She stressed the importance of such cooperation in the improvement of the environmental law in Armenia.

The experts of the Economic Analysis Center NGO presented the legal guarantees of the Aarhus Convention principle access to justice in the context of contemporary developments. Participants had the opportunity to learn about environmental protection and the opinions of experts about the basic ways of improving the situation.

Doctor of law, professor Gevorg Danielyan presented in his speech the legal instruments of the national legislation applicable for the protection of human rights, including issues concerning the environment, at the same time stressing that our knowledge is often insufficient to properly raise the serious and reasonable issues. Professor Danielyan stressed the need for compliance certain provisions of the Aarhus Convention with the national legislation, since, despite the high level of public awareness, legal tools for considering public opinion for proper implementation of the Convention is absent, moreover, the second principle of the Aarhus Convention does not generally operate in Armenia, which creates difficulties both for the government and public.

Candidate of legal sciences Mrs. Anaht Manasyan and Edgar Shatiryan presented the analysis of the processes relating to the Aarhus Convention, the international experience, referred to Article 9, Paragraph 2 of the Convention, the importance of establishing an independent and impartial body and background
You can watch the informative interview on establishing an independent and impartial judicial body by the following link:

http://aviplatform.com/media.details.php?mediaID=3432&page=1&&status=all :

Mari Chakryan
Press Officer of the Armenian Aarhus Centers
E-mail: aarhusnews@gmail.com

Translated by Marine Mazmanyan