The International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), within the framework of EU-funded «Support to Migration and Border Management in Armenia» project, together with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Armenia and Repat Armenia Foundation, is happy to announce «Suitcase 2019» ANNUAL JOURNALISM CONTEST ON MIGRATION ISSUES.

Armenia for more than a decade has had migration policies in place, including an overall policy to manage migration, asylum policy and policies to facilitate integration. It has taken practical steps to integrate thousands of Syrian refugees of Armenian descent.

On 24-27 April, an inter-agency Armenian delegation with representatives from the National Security Service and State Revenue Committee visited the Netherlands to exchange experience and familiarize with EU best practices on border and immigration control, document security, E-gate and inter-agency cooperation. During the visit the team had meetings and presentations at the Dutch Royal Marechausse unit at Schipol International Airport, Immigration and Naturalization Service in the city of Zwolle and enjoyed a demonstration of K-9 service (dogs trained to detect explosives). A detailed walk through at the airport’s arrival and departure facilities was organised. Among other topics, various opportunities for cooperation were discussed, namely use of databases and capacity building.

From 19 to 21 April, 2019, 17 journalists from Public Radio, irates.am, jamnews.am, panorama.am, Golos Armenii, Haykakan Zhamanak, meganews.am, Arminfo and Shant TV participated in the first media trip for 2019 organized by ICMPD in Armenia in Lori Province including Geghasar and Shirakamut villages of Spitak region, and Alaverdi town, Shnogh and Teghut villages.

Armenia and the European Union are increasing their political and economic co-operation. A new Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement, replacing the 1996 Partnership and Co-operation Agreement, marked the beginning of the EU-Armenia Visa Dialogue, which should eventually result in mutual visa-free travel. Although a formal start date of the Visa Dialogue has not yet been announced, it is timely to organize an information exchange with representatives of those Eastern Partnership countries that have already successfully concluded such Dialogue in the past in order to learn from their respective experiences.

In the past few years, the issue of refugee integration has become an important challenge and policy priority in Armenia, affecting the refugees themselves, the local authorities and other state actors that host refugees and asylum seekers in their communities. The long-term stay of the refugees present in the country requires proper addressing of the integration-related challenges at the local and national level and of the humanitarian needs they are facing.

On 17 December 2018, during the Award Ceremony of the annual journalism contest «Suitcase» 9 journalists were awarded for their journalistic excellence on migration issues. On the initiative of the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) office in Armenia, the Award was a collaboration of ICMPD office in Armenia, UNHCR office in Armenia and RepatArmenia Foundation. The winners featured fact-based and impartial reporting on the complexity of migration, its challenges and opportunities.

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Contacts

ICMPD Headquarters  

Gonzagagasse 1
1010 Vienna, Austria
Tel: +43 1 504 4677 0
Fax +43 1 504 4677 2375

ICMPD in Armenia 

26/1 Vazgen Sargsyan Street
Erebuni Plaza Business Centre, office 711
Yerevan 0010, Republic of Armenia
Tel: +374 10 520388

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