Tag Archives: David McAllister

On 24 May the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee delegation, led by its Chair David McAllister (EPP, DE), arrived in Armenia as part of a regional tour to the South Caucasus. After landing in Armenia, the 8 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) first went to Tsitsernakaberd, laid a wreath at the Genocide Memorial, and visited the Armenian Genocide Museum and Institute.

ARS_2886The next day working agenda was busy. The delegation met with Armenian civil society representatives to exchange views on the current domestic and regional political situation, as well as on human rights protection in the country. Later, the MEPs met with the representatives of international organisations in Armenia. The next stop was Yerevan Regional State College #1. The MEPs were excited to visit the college and learn about its activities. The college is one of the 12 pilot vocational and educational training (VET) colleges included in the European Union’s budget support programme.

ARS_3286McAllister and the committee members met the Armenian President, Serzh Sargsyan, the Chairman of the Armenian National Assembly, Ara Babloyan, parliamentarians from the ruling and opposition parties, and the Foreign Affairs Minister, Edward Nalbandian. The committee’s visit concluded with a press conference.

ARS_3362McAllister thanked his Armenian hosts for their hospitality and spoke about the state of EU-Armenia relations: ‘Armenia is a member of the Eurasian Economic Union and at the same time, it is signing this ambitious agreement with the European Union. This is the demonstration that our Eastern Partnership is not a zero-sum game, in competition against other regional actors. Instead, I strongly believe that cooperation of all responsible players is needed to find common solutions to problems that affect many people’s lives – I am thinking in particular of the relationship between Armenia and its neighbour Azerbaijan.
This next government will have many challenges to tackle, starting with the implementation of necessary reforms such as the reform of the judiciary, fight against corruption and anti-discrimination. Improving the business climate and creating economic growth opportunities to boost employment – especially of the young Armenians – is a strong expectation from the society, and rightly so’.

McAllister and the EU Ambassador Piotr Świtalski, answered many journalists’ questions, including those on the latest announcements of the OSCE Minsk Group, the closing of the OSCE Office in Yerevan, and alleged human rights violations.