2008 Events Calendar
Three participants from the Armenian Youth Atlantic Association (Ms. Shakeh Badalyan, Ms. Armine Hakhinyan and Mr. Sergey Chamanyan) participated in the Young Atlanticist Summit which took place in Bucharest on April 1-5, 2008. The Young Atlanticist summit brought together leaders of tomorrow with the Alliance leaders to share knowledge and experiences towards a common vision of the challenges we face today. In Bucharest a tradition launched by ATA and YATA at previous NATO Summits in Prague and Istanbul was continued, in order to emphasize the interest and need for the presence of the young generation in a pro-active manner in public life. Young leaders had an opportunity to participate in a NATO simulation, thus enhancing their leadership and negotiation skills addressing a complex crisis situation dealing with energy security, interacted with world leaders, and were part of a historical event that tackled issues such as enlargement of the Alliance, the challenges ahead in Afghanistan and the Balkans, relations with Russia and Ukraine, and military capabilities. Participants also shaped a major new initiative- the Young Atlanticist Network, the main legacy of the Young Atlanticist Summit in Bucharest. Designed to promote consensus and leadership, this online community provides a permanent forum for Summit participants and other future leaders to exchange views, and stay in contact for years to come.
On April 22, 2008, just after the Armenian delegation was back to Armenia, the AYAA with the financial assistance of the USA Embassy in Armenia organized a one day event which was devoted to the Bucharest Summit. The seminar was entitled “Bucharest NATO Summit: New Enlargement, New Challenges, New Opportunities”. It targeted mostly young people, who are the most dynamic part of society. The workshop hosted more than 40 students and young leaders from different NGOs. During the workshop, the participants were given a chance to express their opinions and hear from others on such issues as regional identification, NATO’s roles in international affairs, NATO’s new enlargement and development, and the challenges it is facing today. Some representatives from the Defense and Foreign Affairs Ministries were invited as speakers. They particularly provided information to the youth on the issues regarding the activities that Armenian government has already done within the IPAP, especially concerning the reforms done in the framework of civilianization process. The speakers from Armenian Youth Atlantic Association, who had already participated in the Young Atlanticist Summit, presented the main issues and topics discussed in the Summit, and during the second session provided detailed information on Young Atlanticist Summit and the Bucharest Summit in general.
This year, in the framework of NATO Week in Armenia, the Armenian Atlantic Association with the financial assistance of the NATO PDD, International Center for Human Development and organizational assistance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia, organized three events:
  •        The Second NATO-Armenia Educational Rally;
  •        Town Hall Meeting;
  •        Open Air Concert.
The week of June 23 to 29, 2008 was the second NATO week in Armenia, and the Armenian Atlantic Association arranged the second NATO-Armenia Educational Rally, a bus trip, which stooped at three cities (Vanadzor, Gavar and Kapan) along the rally route over two days. It was a series of educational conferences held in different regions across the Republic of Armenia.

The second event, that was organized in the framework of NATO Week in Armenia by the AAA, was Town Hall Meeting, which took place on June 27, 2008, in Yerevan. During this event five scenarios about the NATO-Armenian relationships and conflict situations were discussed. At the end of the event the voting process was organized. The options were:
  1.        NATO is a friend;
  2.        NATO is an enemy;
  3.        NATO is an opportunity;
  4.        NATO is an obstacle
and the participants should choose only one option. At the end of the voting process almost 80% of the participants gave their votes to the 3rd option: NATO is an opportunity. NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy Mr. Jean-Francois Bureau had his participation even around one of the discussions’ table as a discussant. At the end of this event Mr. Bureau had a short speech regarding the NATO Week in Armenia generally and the Town Hall Meeting event particularly.

On the same day AAA organized the third and the last event “Open Air Concert”. During this event an open air discussion among youth, representatives from several NGOs and the guests from the NATO PDD took place which was accompanied with the live music. The event was held in the center of Yerevan, in one of the most beautiful cafes. The aim of this event was be to create more auspicious and friendly environment for the discussions upon NATO as a political and military organization, its further development and enlargement, as well as NATO-Armenia relationships.
On June 23-27, 2008 Ms. Lilit Grigoryan, a young scholar from the AYAA participated in the Youth- Atlantic Treaty Associations (YATA) Caucasian Summit entitled “Youth Cooperation for the Peace and Security in Caucasus” which took palce in Tbilisi, Georgia. The event was organized by Uni- Caucasus Youth Study group, which was established by the academicians and students of Karadeniz Technical University, Department of International Relations (Turkey). The main participants were students from Karadeniz Technical University and Tbilisi State University. There were representatives from YATA Turk and Armenian Youth Atlantic Association as well. The main result of the event was establishment of new a network of young people from various countries and cultures, which will be a strong base for the future cooperation and new projects.
On July 2-8, 2008 the Danish Atlantic Youth Seminar was held at the Danish Air Force Base in Aalborg, Southern Denmark. Two young scholars Ms. Gayane Tonikyan and Ms. Tatevik Hovhannisyan represented the Armenian YATA at DAYS 2008. This year the seminar focused on the South Caucasus region and NATO activities in Afghanistan. A simulation game was organized for the last two days of the seminar where young scholars acted as heads of governments and international organizations and tried to find solutions for the existing problems of the South Caucasus region. Just after the seminar the Armenian delegation left for Oslo to take part in the Norwegian Atlantic Committee’s Workshop on the South Caucasus region where two participants from each of the three South Caucasus countries-Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia were represented as participants. The workshop aimed to discuss the possible solutions for the existing conflicts in the region, and the Norwegian political, economic, humanitarian and educational interests and future activities in the South Caucasus.
The Executive Director of the Armenian Atlantic Association Mr. Tevan Poghosyan, the Head of the Youth Department Ms. Shakeh Badalyan and YATA member Ms. Armine Hakhinyan have participated in the 54th General Assembly of the Atlantic Treaty Association which took place in Berlin, from the 8th to the 12th of November, 2008. The program of the GA consisted of a series of high level panel discussions in a variety of prominent venues of the Brandenburger Tor in Berlin. The conference benefited from the presence of Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel and NATO’s Secretary General Mr. Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, as well as from the cooperation of several Berlin embassies. YATA Delegates had the opportunity to meet and discuss about national and international perspective of the trasnatlantic youth movement. At Berlin new ATA president as well as new YATA Executive Board have been elected.
From 13th to the 15th of November, 2008 Ms. Shakeh Badalyan, the Head of the Youth Department of the Armenian Atlantic Association has participated in the conference organized by the YATA-Russia which took place in Moscow. The title of the event was “Euro-Atlantic Security Shift-Reform or Brake-Down?”. During the event the participants had chance to discuss some “hot issues” regarding the political transformation in the Euro-Atlantic area and NATO-Russia relations.
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