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The Linkages between the Environment and Security

31.03.2014
The linkages between the environment and security and how to address challenges associated with them were the focus of a two-day OSCE workshop held on March 26-27 for representatives of Public Environmental Information Centres (Aarhus Centres) and civil society in Armenia. The event was part of the Civic Action or Environment and Security (CASE) programme and was initiated by the Office of the Co-ordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities jointly with the OSCE Office in Yerevan within the Environment and Security (ENVSEC) Initiative.
“One of the Office’s main priorities in the environmental field is to ensure that the civil society in Armenia participates in decision-making,” said Tomasz Dembski, Economic and Environmental Programme Officer at the OSCE Office in Yerevan welcoming the participants. “To achieve this goal, we encourage closer contacts and co-operation between different actors of Armenian society – state and local government, civil society, and the international community.”

Mr. V. Gevorgyan, head of the Conventional Arms Control Division of the RA Ministry of Foreign Affairs highlighted the importance of the Aarhus Centers, noting that even during the international meetings is visible the Centers’ importance and exemplary practices. Each of 5 spheres- military, political, economic, social and environmental determines the main security issues and the form of priorities regulation; meanwhile all those are intertwined and interconnected with solid network.

The environmental security deals with the protection of local and the earth’s biosphere as an important support system, of which depends the rest of the human undertakings. On these issues a lecture was delivered and proposed team works by the international expert G. Leonte.

There was also a debate was held about the prospects of the environment and security. Ms. E. Manvelyan, president of the “Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment” NGO presented the priorities of perspectives of the environment and security in Armenia. There were different opinions about the raised issues.

Ms. L. Paremuzyan, president of “Anahit” women’s NGO noted that the responsible party’s – the civil servants participation in the workshop was also mandatory, in order to receive clear answers to the raised questions.

Ms. S. Ayvazyan, coordinator of Yerevan Aarhus Centre welcoming the importance and usefulness of the workshop in terms of the Aarhus Centers further operation, mentioned that previously in Yerevan Aarhus Center to the civil society were being presented the all project presentations carried out under the CASE initiative, being discussed the effectiveness of those implementation, in the Aarhus Centers’ website were being posted detailed information about the launch, progress and results of that projects, which provided an opportunity to ensure wider range of awareness, but, in recent years this cooperation has fallen.

Ms. L. Asoyan, Manager of the “Support to the implementation of the Aarhus Convention, creation and enhancement of the Aarhus Centers and environmental civil society structures” Project considered more effective the Centers and CASE programs cooperation as well as all the all Aarhus Centers participation in the workshop.

Mr. Ed. Safaryan, CASE program coordinator expressed willingness to resume the cooperation as well as proposed to include the Aarhus Centers in the monitoring group of the projects.

Mary Chakryan
PR manager of the Armenian Aarhus Centers
Tell: 010 551364
E-mail: aarhusnews@gmail.com
Translated by Anush Beybutyan