RA Minister of Diaspora meets with Head of EU Delegation, Ambassador, H.E. Traian Hristea

RA Minister of Diaspora Hranush Hakobyan on 17 July received Head of the European Union Delegation to the Republic of Armenia, Ambassador, H. E. Traian Hristea. President of the “Coordination Center for Syrian-Armenians’ Issues” NGO Lena Haladjian and members of the EU Delegation to Armenia and the task force of the RA Ministry of Diaspora in charge of solving Syrian-Armenians’ issues also attended the meeting.

The minister presented the Armenian authorities’ position on and programs for the solution to the key issues facing Armenians who have moved to Armenia due to the civil war in Syria. The minister particularly addressed the changes made in RA legal acts, as well as the efforts made in the spheres of education, healthcare and business and the efforts to provide the Syrian-Armenians with jobs and dwellings.

Hranush Hakobyan introduced the plan to establish a “New Aleppo” district in Armenia’s Ashtarak city. Construction has been launched by the assignment of RA President Serzh Sargsyan, and the RA Government has taken a decision on the establishment of the district. The district will be for Syrian-Armenians who have moved to Armenia for permanent residency and will be built with the support of the government, sponsors and benefactors.

The RA Minister of Diaspora also emphasized the fact that in the years between 2012 and 2013, the support programs for Syrian-Armenians in Armenia have been implemented with funding from the state budget and with the support of pan-Armenian organizations, and addressed the Head of the EU Delegation with the request to have the EU co-fund the programs aimed at solving the Syrian-Armenians’ key issues, particularly the solution to the housing program within the framework of the large sums provided to citizens of Syria who have been forced to move from one country to the next as a result of the civil war and taking into consideration the experience of support to Syrian-Armenians who have taken shelter in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.

Hranush Hakobyan also presented Traian Hristea with a reference regarding the activities aimed at solving the key issues facing Syrian-Armenians, the current issues and the mechanisms for solving them, as well as a notice with the request for support.

The next important issue was the crisis in Syria and particularly Aleppo. The once economic capital of the country has been in a blockade for nearly 10 days and is out of electricity, and this has led to the sharp decline of food, hygienic accessories and drugs. The citizens may starve, and so, the physical existence of the citizens, including the Armenians is at risk.

The minister asked Traian Hristea to present the issues on lifting the blockade against Aleppo and establishing stability in the country, as well as the need of making humanitarian assistance reach the peaceful population of Syria to the member countries of the European Union and international organizations.

The head of the EU Delegation expressed his sympathy and the willingness to raise the above mentioned issues at the relevant levels.


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