Freedom of Information Center of Armenia.

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ATI in Armenia/16 years of success: Forum


“Access of Information in Armenia: 16 years of practice” a Forum was held on February 12, in Yerevan. The Forum united all the key players in the field. The joint event of the Freedom of Information Center and the RA Ministry of Justice aimed to summarize the practice of 16 years of the Armenian Freedom of Information act.

“Today, we gathered to summarize the 16 years implementation practice of the Armenian FOI Law, lessons learnt, the progress and shortcomings of the Armenian experience in FOI, as well as to contribute to the establishment of the Freedom of Information oversight body dedicated to the enforcement of ATI standards, said Shushan Doydoyan, President of Freedom of Information Center.

The Vice Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia Ms. Lena Nazaryan attached importance of the principle of freedom of information welcomed the introduction of the specialists in the field and their efforts in fostering freedom of information throughout the years. Deputy Minister of Justice Mr. Suren Krmoyan welcomed the participants of the workshop, stressing that the right to freedom of information is an important tool for protecting other human rights and creating welfare.

"I am convinced that such discussions, suggesting different opinions and pointing out the ways to overcome the challenges, contribute to the formation of a more free press in our country, promoting freedom of information and as a result of a more open, demanding civil society development, said representative of the Armenian National Committee of UNESCO Mr. Vahram Kazhoyan.

The international expert and the executive director of the Center for Law and Democracy Mr Toby Mendel, also spoke about the importance of establishment of an oversight body and presented different models existing worldwide. He also advised on the best model applicable for the Armenian context.

Other local experts and speakers touched upon the following topics: Data protection and ATI: the right balance; taking a pro-active approach to the Right to Information; FOI litigation practice and extrajudicial mechanisms for protection of ATI right.

The event was attended by the FOI officers of various state agencies, representatives of the National Parliament, CSOs, media, and international organizations, and it was widely covered by the social and other media.

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