Crimea, South Ossetia, and Azerbaijan have been ranked the least free places in Europe, in the latest edition of American rights group Freedom House’s Freedom in the World report. The report measures the degree of civil liberties and political rights across the world.
In the last six years, 5,885 people registered for asylum in Georgia, only quarter of which were granted humanitarian or refugee status, data published by Institute for Development of freedom of Information (IDFI) indicates. In most cases proceedings were terminated by the applicants themselves (2,743), with 1,346 people being rejected. [Read more…]
The first U-turn
The statement from the President of Armenian in September 2013 sounded like a bolt from the blue. He would not sign the Association Agreement with the European Union at the planned November Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius, he said. Instead, Armenia would be joining the Russian led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). This signified Armenia's departure from a multi-vector foreign policy. [Read more…]
With Armenia’s soaring labour migration rates, working-age men have become a rare sight in many villages. Their wives have grown used to seeing them only once a year, if at all, and raising the children alone isn’t only a matter of necessity — it has become a fact of life. [Read more…]
The new law on conscription has left many Armenian students stunned. While stressing their commitment to serving the country, many worry that in practice, it will be hard to obtain Master’s degree after three years of non-deferrable military service.
In the Yazidi villages in the west of Armenia, many girls and boys don’t finish school. For girls, it’s ‘a great tragedy’ to be unwed by 18, while the boys must go to work. But there are some in the community challenging the stereotypes, hoping to build a better world for future generations.
Mining is one of the most important sectors of the Armenian economy; it has the largest share of exports constituting more than half the total value. On 9 March 2017, Armenia became a candidate country for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). Candidacy means the country must undertake a series of reforms within a set timeframe to comply with standards of transparency and accountability.
Lured abroad with promises of love or money, victims of human trafficking from Armenia often find themselves forced into prostitution in Turkey and Dubai. For those who escape, the psychological scars of their ordeals are added to by a lack of acceptance and understanding from family and society back in Armenia. [Read more…]
With murky boundaries between the authorities and big supermarket chains in Armenia, their government linked owners enjoy a degree of impunity. This has and does lead to fear, intimidation, and exploitation of workers, and even voter fraud. [Read more…]