CE Monitoring Groups to Visit Armenia in April

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Two groups monitoring Azerbaijan’s and Armenia’s compliance with the Council of Europe membership requiremen’s will visit Nagorno Karabakh on April 8-13–PACE Armenian delegation vice-president Armen Rustamian made the announcement at a press conference on Tuesday. He also said that no speaker on Nagorno Karabakh issue was assigned for the PACE January 21-25 winter session. It is quite probable for the issue to be discussed at the PACE spring session.

The head of the delegation–Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Commission Chairman–Hovhannes Hovhannisian stated that the Armenian delegation presented its viewpoint at the PACE–in accordance with which the speaker on Karabakh must not be a representative of any mighty European country or of the OSCE Minsk Group member countries. "We should try to chose a person who would present an unbiased report about the Karabakh issue to the European Council," noted Hovhannisian. According to him–a preliminary agreement was achieved that the Karabakh representative must take part in any PACE discussion concerning the Karabakh issue.

Rustamian said that the groups monitoring Armenia and Azerbaijan acknowledged Armenia’s compliance with the CE requiremen’s during the meeting recently held in Paris. The group monitoring Armenia’stated that the country was successful as far as the general issues are concerned. Before the monitoring groups would visit the region–Armenia must comply with the ratification of the Convention of Human Rights Main Principles of abolishing capital punishment.

The Parliamentary delegation of Armenia presented its explanations to the monitoring group and raised the question the punishment of the criminals in the October 27 Parliamentary killings. However–according to him–the CE does not intend to make any exclusions so the Armenian Parliament must discuss the ratification of the aforementioned convention during its spring session. In case the convention is not ratified–the advisability of Armenia’s CE membership may be called into question which may have more serious consequences than the presence of political prisoners in Azerbaijan.


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