Press Trip to Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh (15-23 September 2018)
European Friends of Armenia organised a press trip from September 15 – 23, 2018, to Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh), with a vision to draw international media attention to the still under-reported region. A group of European journalists had the opportunity to explore and discover Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh, from the bustling city of Yerevan, to the winding mountain roads of Nagorno-Karabakh. This allowed them to see the two countries from social, economic, and political perspectives. Both in Yerevan and Stepanakert, the journalists had the opportunity to meet and interview Armenian and Karabakhi high-level officials, locals, and civil society representatives.
During their stay in Nagorno-Karabakh, the journalists met with Karabakhi officials such as the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Head of Human Rights Department at the Ombudsman office, as well as military command leaders. They also had the opportunity to meet with representatives of several NGO’s and civil society groups such as: the HALO Trust, which included a guided visit to a minefield where journalists were able to talk to the de-miners about their work; an NGO seeking to aid Syrian refugees in Karabakh; and a Women’s Empowerment NGO. A trip to Stepanakert Airport and Stepanakert’s TUMO Centre for Creative Technologies concluded their time in Nagorno-Karabakh.
In Yerevan, the journalists were able to join the people of Armenia in celebrating 27 years of independence since the fall of the Soviet Union. They attended the grand opening of the Prime Minister’s Residence, where they listened to Prime Minister Nikhol Pashinyan’s address on the recent democratic changes in Armenia. On top of this, the journalists met with high-level officials such as the Deputy Minister for Diaspora, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, as well as certain representatives from the Ministry of Health. The journalists also had the opportunity to visit the Armenian Genocide Memorial, where they visited the museum and learned more about the history of the Genocide, after which they had a meeting with a descendent of a Genocide survivor.
Overall, this trip allowed the journalists the opportunity to report on the political, economic, and social changes that have occurred in Armenia and Artsakh since Armenia’s ‘Velvet Revolution’ in May 2018.
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