KAPAN (Noyan Tapan)– On Thursday–a seminar on the "Role of NGOs in Establishing Democratic Society" was arranged in the town of Kapan based upon the initiative by the Armenian National Committee of the Helsinki Civil Assembly. The seminar was attended by representatives of Kapan’s public organizations–the Armenian National Committee–the Helsinki Civil Assembly–a representative of the British "European Dialogue" organization–Kevin Carlay–local officials–teachers–and art workers.
The co-chairmen of the Armenian National Committee of the Helsinki Civil Assembly Anahit Bayandur and Nataly Martirossian stressed the important role of public organization–pointing out that these organizations should do their best to assist civil initiatives and protect human rights.
The head of the Kapan mission Radik Saroukhanian presented his concept of the establishment of free society–spoke about the role of public organizations and spheres of their activities and pointed out that they are weak and work ineffectively. The results of the public opinion poll recently conducted in Kapan testifies this. According to these results–many of the residents of Kapan are not aware of the public organizations operating in the town–their rights are not protected–and 80 percent of the respondents are trying to settle matters by illegal methods when their rights are violated.
Kevin Carlay–in his speech–addressed the link between NGOs and the sections of power–noting that public organizations today should not be oppositional–but cooperate with everybody–promoting democracy in society.