RUCARR Roundtable April 29 – Armenia’s Human Rights agenda

Armenia’s Human Rights agenda: efforts amidst social and security challenges

Welcome to join us for a RUCARR Roundtable on Monday April 29, 15.15-17.00; Seminar room 9th floor, Niagara Building.

Valentina Gevorgyan: Civil Society actors in Armenia as the main defenders of human rights

The talk will concentrate on Armenian civil society. First, the speaker will present the phases of civil society development in Armenia’s post-Soviet period of troubled transition, followed by current developments and challenges for the civil society. The talk will reflect on one recent study (and research in progress, RWI), highlighting the main areas and functions of civil society actors, as the main drivers of democratisation and defenders of human rights in the republic.

Anna Melikyan: Impact of fighting corruption on human rights in Armenia since 2018

The presentation will focus on the efforts in Armenia to fight corruption after the change of government in 2018 as a result of the peaceful protests with a focus on prosecution. It will encompass how this fight affects the human rights situation in the country given the pressure of public expectations and whether the government and the judiciary are able to ensure the rule of law and human rights principles in corruption-related trials, including recovery of illicit assets. 

Srbuhi Michikyan: Examining Multidimensional Poverty in conflict affected regions. The case of Syunik region in Armenia: Methodological concerns.

In conflict-affected regions worldwide, poverty is intertwined with violence, displacement, instability,  and significantly affects the ability of individuals to lead dignified lives. Conventional poverty measures, focusing solely on income or consumption metrics, fail to capture the complexity of deprivation experienced in such contexts, however, multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) has revolutionized poverty analysis, offering a holistic framework that considers diverse dimensions impacting well-being. The talk explores the methodological considerations specific to conducting MPI research in conflict areas, using Syunik region in Armenia as a case study. It discusses the challenges and opportunities inherent in conducting MPI research in a conflict contexts to understand the limitations of used methodology.

Moderator is Dr Katrine Gotfredsen, Senior Lecturer in Cauasus Studies, Malmö University.

Bios

Valentina Gevorgyan – is a researcher of social and political developments in hybrid regimes with problematic post-Soviet legacy. Her academic interests centre on civil society, state-society relations, cultural policy and the EU accession and democratisation processes of the EU’s Eastern Partnership countries. She holds PhD in Political Science from University of Fribourg (Switzerland), and MA in Political Science from American University of Armenia.

Previously, she worked as a research specialist with Open Society Foundations (Armenia), Academic Swiss Caucasus Net and Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation in South Caucasus. Currently, she is Assistant Professor at Yerevan State University, Department of Political Science and a lecturer at University of Fribourg, Department of European and Slavic Studies. She reads courses on Civil Society and Political Culture, and is author of “Civil Society and Government Institutions in Armenia. Leaving Behind the ‘Post-Soviet’ Title” (Routledge, 2024). Currently she is a Research Fellow with RWI Armenia Programme.

Anna Melikyan – Since 2020, Anna Melikyan is a Legal Analyst with the Armenia-based human-rights NGO “Protection of Rights Without Borders”. She also manages projects in the field of justice sector and anti-corruption reform in Armenia. Prior to that, Ms. Melikyan worked in the field of human rights and conflict settlement for international organizations, including the OSCE Mission to Moldova, OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights and Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mission to Osh. In 2012-2017, Anna worked for the Armenian NGO “Civil Society Institute” as Director and Human Rights Officer.
Ms. Melikyan has long-years of experience in teaching courses related to human rights and international humanitarian at the Russian-Armenian (Slavonic) University.
Anna Melikyan holds Law Degree from the Russian-Armenian (Slavonic) University, and LL.M. from the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights. Currently, is a Research Fellow with RWI Armenia Programme.

Srbuhi Michikyan – is a Research Associate at Caucasus Research Resource Center (CRRC) – Armenia Foundation. She holds a Master’s degree in Research Methodology and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology, both earned from Yerevan State University. She spent one semester of her Master’s degree studies at University of Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic. Now she is a Ph.D. student in sociology at the Yerevan State University. Since 2018, she has been actively engaged with academic institutions, research institutes, and civil society organizations in Armenia. Srbuhi’s research interests encompass a wide range of sociological themes, with a particular focus on Inequality, urban studies, and space and place transformation studies. She has contributed to the academic discourse through the publication of several scholarly articles and analytical reports on these subjects. In her research activities, she employs a mixed approach, conducting both qualitative and quantitative analyses. Also, she is an expert of accreditation of Higher Education and worked as a student-expert both in Armenia and abroad. She has experience of coordinating and organizing local and international workshops and trainings. Currently she is a Research Fellow with the RWI Armenia Programme visiting Lund, until June 2024.

Visit from the Swedish Research Institute in Istanbul

Roundtable at Malmö University on the topic of “The Caucasus between Turkey and Russia” at the annual meeting of the Research Collegium of the Swedish Research Institute , Istanbul (https://srii.org/), hosted by RUCARR.

Presenters: PhD Candidate Michel Anderlini, Dr George Mchedlishvili, Dr Natia Gamkrelidze, Dr Kamal Makili-Aliyev, Prof. Karina Vamling. Moderator: Prof. Bo Petersson.

RUCARR reseachers & colleagues on the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

Watch roundtable webinar: Nagorno-Karabakh: from status quo towards final resolution? (archive)

Webinar December 8, 2020. https://rucarr.mau.se/live-video/

Prof. Gerard Jirair Libaridian, professor (emeritus) of history at the University of Michigan, former advisor to the first President of the Republic of Armenia on foreign and security policies. (photo)

Dr. Philip Gamaghelyan, assistant professor at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, University of San Diego.

Dr. Kamal Makili-Aliyev, senior lecturer at the Department of Global Political Studies, Malmö University, affiliated researcher at the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law.

Mr. Zaur Shiriyev, International Crisis Group’s Analyst for South Caucasus, former Academy Associate with the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House.

Modertor:  Dr. Julie A. George, associate professor at the Graduate Center / Queen’s College, City University of New York.

Selected publications

Magnusson, Märta-Lisa and Karina Vamling. (2023). Ryssland mot Turkiet i Nagorno-Karabach. Forskning & Framsteg. https://fof.se/artikel/ryssland-mot-turkiet-i-nagorno-karabach/

Magnusson, Märta-Lisa and Karina Vamling. (2023). Ryssland förlorar inflytande till förmån för Turkiet. Sydsvenskan (2022-02-24) (link)

Magnusson, Märta-Lisa (2010).  “Why No Settlement in the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict? – Which are the obstacles to a negotiated solution?”  In: Vamling, K. (ed): Language, History and Cultural Identities in the Caucasus : papers from the conference, June 17-19 2005, Malmö University, 2010, pp. 114-143  (link)

Magnusson, Märta-Lisa:. (2008). “Nagorno-Karabakh – de facto stat på spring?” Fra nation til stat: Er Kosovo undtagelsen? Udenrigs, nr. 1, 2008 (link)

Magnusson, Märta-Lisa (2003). Karabakh- den besvärlige brik i de stores spil. I: Ib Faurby og Märta-Lisa Magnusson (Red): Korsvej og minefelt.  Kultur og konflikt i Kaukasus. Århus: Systime Academic, sid. 166-213.

Makili-Aliyev, Kamal (2020). Contested Territories and International Law. A comparative study of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the Aland Islands precedent. Abingdon, Oxon ; New York, NY : Routledge

Makili-Aliyev, Kamal (2021). The Role of Azerbaijan in the Non-Aligned Movement Through the Lens of International Law and Security. In: The 60th Anniversary of the Non-Aligned Movement. :359-370; Institute of International Politics and Economics (link)

Theisen, Søren (2021). A little trip down memory lane. REjser i Armenien kring tiden omkring Sovjetunionens opløsning I: Magnusson, ML & K. Vamling (eds.) Vi såg sammanbrottet. Svenska och danska forskares berättelser från Kaukasus under Sovjetväldets sista år. Caucasus Studies 8. 95-108. https://ojs.mau.se/index.php/caucasus/issue/view/117/27

 

 

Seminar on The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press with Dr. Artyom Tonoyan, November 1

Seminar on The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press with Dr. Artyom Tonoyan, November 1st 

When: November 1st, 15:15-17:00

Where?: Zoom-link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/j/63095278918

Black Garden Aflame: The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press

For a few brief weeks in fall 2020, Western media buzzed with news of the intense war in Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh). The conflict had been “frozen” since 1994, so the new outbreak of violence caught many journalists unawares.

By contrast, this conflict has been a mainstay in the Soviet, then Russian press. The sheer volume of published material—including eyewitness accounts, interviews with notable figures, and incisive, well-researched analyses—far exceeds anything produced by Western media.

Moscow’s knowledge of the region is as strong as it is permanent, dictated mainly by geopolitical interests. The collection of articles in the book—carefully translated, edited, and culled from a vast repository of Russian-language press curated by Artyom Tonoyan—presents in book form for the first time in English some of the most important material that has appeared from 1988 to the present.

BIO
A native of Gyumri, Armenia, Dr. Artyom Tonoyan is a sociologist and Visiting Professor of Global Studies at Hamline University, in St. Paul, Minnesota. His research interests include sociology of religion, religion and politics in the South Caucasus, and religion and nationalism in post-Soviet Russia. His articles have appeared in Demokratizatsiva: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization, Society, and Modern Greek Studies Yearbook, among others. He has been a frequent guest on the BBC, Deutsche Welle, France 24, and other outlets. He is currently working on a book charting the social,historical, and religious backgrounds of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. He received his Ph.D. from Baylor University.

 

 

 

Seminar on China’s policy towards the countries of South Caucasus with Dr. David Aptsiauri, Nov 15

Specifics of China’s policy towards the countries of South Caucasus during continuing global crisis

Welcome to the RUCARR seminar on November 15 with Dr. David Aptsiauri, who has served many years as Georgia’s Ambassador to China, Mongolia and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Where: Zoom seminar,  Link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/s/64464981144

When: 1.15–3.00 pm Malmö CET (04.15–6.00 pm Tbilisi), November 15

Abstract

The presentation will be based on consideration of the current trends in development of cooperation between China and countries of South Caucasus, its influence on the region’s economic growth and security environment, particularly in the context of continuing pandemic crisis and war in Ukraine. The cooperation of the countries of South Caucasus in the frame of Chinese ,“Belt and Road Initiative” presents an important part of the analysis. The role of global and regional players in politics and economics of South Caucasus should enrich the knowledge of the updated situation in the region.

Bio

Ambassador David Aptsiauri, Dr. in International Economics, currently takes a position of General Director of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Georgia, earlier worked as Senior Fellow at the Levan Mikeladze Training and Research Diplomatic Institute of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. He is a career diplomat with almost 30 years of professional experience in diplomacy, that started in the United States in early 90s, where he was sent among the first group of Georgian diplomats to the newly established Embassy of Georgia to the United States and Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. During 2000-2004, Dr. Aptsiauri served as Deputy Minister, and later as First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. In 2014-2018, he served as Ambassador of Georgia to the People`s Republic of China, Mongolia and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Prior to that, he was appointed as Ambassador of Georgia to the Republics of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia (2004-2007), Republic of Lithuania (2007-2008). 

In parallel with his diplomatic background Ambassador D. Aptsiauri has been actively involved in academic and research activities in the field of international economic relations as Visiting Professor and Senior Scholar in Georgia and abroad, he is the author of a wide range of publications on international economic relations. Currently he is a Senior Researcher at Tbilisi State University, runs the Center of the Black Sea Regional Development problems at the Georgian Technical University, is appointed as Member of the Board of the Georgian analythic Center “Geocase” and, as visiting professor, delivers lectures at Tbilisi State University, Beijing University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) and Astana International University (AIU), Kazakhstan. In 1994-2000, Ambassador Aptsiauri conducted academic and research activities in the United States, including lecturing and key presentations at Columbia University, University of Florida, the New York Bar Association. During 2004-2013 Dr. Aptsiauri also delivered lectures and ran training courses in educational and research organizations of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Sweden, Belgium, Greece, China, Baltic and other countries. In 2019 he was invited by the Azerbaijani Diplomatic Academy, (ADA-University) to conduct training program for senior diplomatic personnel on economic diplomacy. In addition, he has participated in numerous high level workshops, seminars and training courses / including the statements before Special Sessions of the United Nations General Assembly/ in Europe, the United States of America, Asia, Latin America, covering the crucial topics of international security and economic cooperation, conflict resolution and sustainable development, problems of children, regional and interregional collaboration, in particular the East-West dimension.

Nagorno-Karabakh: from status quo towards final resolution?

RUCARR Zoom-webinar — Nagorno-Karabakh: from status quo towards final resolution?

RUCARR is inviting to the Zoom-webinar taking place on December 8th at 18:00 (CET) / 12 pm (EST) / 9 am (PST). The webinar is dedicated to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Sign-up link

During autumn months of 2020, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict went into the most violent phase since 1994. Hostilities once again erupted in the region following the mediation efforts of various intensity that have lasted for almost three decades and have yet proven unsuccessful. Armenia and Azerbaijan were able to reach a new cease-fire agreement through the unilateral mediation of Russia, that resulted in inter alia return of most of the contested territories under the control of Azerbaijan, entrance of the Russian peacekeeping force into the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, establishment of peacekeeping operation for five years with the possibility of subsequent prolongation and obligations to reopen regional communications between Armenia and Azerbaijan and most likely (implicitly) Turkey. The agreement, however, is not a comprehensive peace treaty and the conflict’s key issues (not least the legal status of Nagorno-Karabakh) remain unresolved.

The webinar’s eminent panel will consist of four distinguished experts in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with various backgrounds. It will be moderated by Dr. Julie A. George, associate professor at the Graduate Center / Queen’s College, City University of New York.

On the panel we will have:

Prof. Gerard Jirair Libaridian, professor (emeritus) of history at the University of Michigan, former advisor to the first President of the Republic of Armenia on foreign and security policies.

Dr. Philip Gamaghelyan, assistant professor at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, University of San Diego.

Dr. Kamal Makili-Aliyev, senior lecturer at the Department of Global Political Studies, Malmö University, affiliated researcher at the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law.

Mr. Zaur Shiriyev, International Crisis Group’s Analyst for South Caucasus, former Academy Associate with the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House.

During the webinar our panel will discuss the changes in the long-standing status quo: what would this mean for the future developments in Armenia and Azerbaijan, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and the region of South Caucasus.

Säkerhetspolitik i Sydkaukasien

I ett samarrangemang med Norsk Utenrikspolitisk Institutt (NUPI) bjuder RUCARR in till ett Zoom-seminarium 9 november på temat: ”Säkerhetspolitik i Sydkaukasien”.

Seminariet äger rum online genom Zoom. Förhandsregistrera dig här för att kunna ansluta. Diskussionen kommer att hållas på svenska. Seminariet stöds av Tidsskriftforeningen/Fritt Ord och utgår från en temasektion som tidskriften Nordisk Østforum publicerade i september 2020:

Sydkaukasien betraktas ofta som en krutdurk. Regionen innehåller tre stater (Armenien, Azerbajdzjan, Georgien) men också tre icke erkända ”stater” (Abchazien, Nagorno-Karabakh, Sydossetien) som förlitar sig på stöd utifrån. Bland de externa intressenterna har både Ryssland och EU liksom Turkiet en framträdande roll, vilket de senaste veckornas stridigheter i och kring Nagorno-Karabach illustrerar. Detta regionala säkerhetskomplex är ämnet för dagens seminarium. Paneldeltagare från FOI, Malmö universitet och Uppsala universitet kommer att dela med sig av sin kunskap om Kremls intressen i Kaukasien, EU:s påverkansmöjligheter samt den svåra geopolitiska balansgång som lokala aktörer står inför.

Program

10:00-10:05 Moderator Christofer Berglund hälsar välkommen

10:05-10:35 Paneldeltagarnas presentationer

10:35-11:00 Diskussion och frågor från åhörarna

Paneldeltagare

Jakob Hedenskog arbetar på enheten för säkerhetspolitik, Totalförsvarets forskningsinstitut (FOI). Han specialiserar sig på rysk utrikespolitik och länderna i Rysslands närområde.

Michel Anderlini är doktorand på Institutionen för globala politiska studier, Malmö universitet. Hans avhandlingsprojekt handlar om relationen mellan EU och Georgien.

Per Ekman är doktorand på Statsvetenskapliga institutionen, Uppsala universitet. Hans avhandlingsprojekt handlar om utrikespolitiska strategier i Ukraina och Georgien.

Li Bennich-Björkman är Skytteansk professor i statskunskap, Uppsala universitet. Hon leder ett VR-finansierat forskningsprojekt om säkerhetspolitiska perceptioner i Sydkaukasien.

Seminar with Dr Lincoln Mitchell – The Caucasus in the Post-Covid Multi-Polar World

You are invited to attend the RUCARR online seminar on October 6  The Caucasus in the Post-Covid Multi-Polar World with Dr. Lincoln Mitchell, affiliated to Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies, Columbia University (bio below).

When: October 6, 3.15-5.00 pm (Swedish time)
Where: Zoom platform
The seminar is open to staff and students as well as other interested. Welcome to sign-up at rucarr@mau.se.

Abstract

One of the results of the mishandling of the Covid-19 pandemic by the American government has been to accelerate the movement towards a truly multi-polar world. Instead of controlling the pandemic within its own borders and offering assistance to the rest of the world, the US suffered more loss of life and greater damage to its economy that most countries. One of the effects of this has been to damage not just America’s standing in the world, but also limit its ability to impact political events in the rest of the world. This development will be felt acutely in the Caucasus.

The three South Caucasus countries as well as the Russian regions in the North Caucasus have long had to navigate a path between major political powers, but the nature of that challenge began to change in 2017, when Donald Trump became President of the US, and has accelerated in recent months. These polities now find themselves in a very different world, one where the American footprint will be lighter and China’s almost certainly heavier. Additionally, the possibility of the world becoming less globally integrated will have major impact on a region that has long been a crossroads between different regions. These developments will have an impact on the domestic politics of the countries in the region on issues ranging from democracy and human rights to domestic stability as well as their relations with each other and the rest of the world including with regards to questions of trade, fighting terrorism and national security.

This seminar will explore these questions and probe how the Caucasus will be changed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Bio

Lincoln Mitchell is a political analyst, pundit and writer based in New York City and San Francisco. Lincoln works on democracy and governance related issues in the former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. He also works with businesses and NGOs globally, particularly in the former Soviet Union. Lincoln was on the faculty of Columbia University’s School of International Affairs from 2006-2013. He retains an affiliation with Columbia’s Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies and teaches in the political science department as well. In addition, he worked for years as a political consultant advising and managing domestic political campaigns. […] Continue reading: http://lincolnmitchell.com/about

Seminar with Dr. Stepan Grigoryan on the Velvet Revolution


On January 28, Dr. Stepan Grigoryan – Chairman of the Board of the Yerevan-based Analytical Centre on Globalization and Regional Cooperation (ACGRC) NGO – gave the seminar entitled Velvet Revolution and Political Developments in Armenia.


Dr. Grigoryan holds diplomatic rank of Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Armenia. In the years 1998-2000, he was Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia, and in 1995-1998 as a diplomat, he held different positions at the Armenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 1990-1995 Stepan Grigoryan was a member of the Armenian Parliament.

The Armenian Velvet Revolution by Stepan Grigoryan. Yerevan: Edit Print, 2018.

When: 3.15-5 pm, January 28
Where: Niagara Building (Nordenskiöldsgatan 1), Seminar room 9th floor (external participants, please, come to the reception in the Niagara lobby at 3 pm)..