2009

SAKHAROV PRICE FOR MEMORIAL DECEMBER 16th 2009

Brussels, 16th December 2009: The European Parliament's 2009 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought has been awarded to Russian civil rights defence organization Memorial, and their three representatives Oleg Orlov, Sergei Kovalev and Lyudmila Alexeyeva, as well as all other human rights defenders in Russia. The award ceremony took place in Strasbourg on 16 December. Read the address of Sergei Kovalev (in German) - blog.boell-net.de/blogs/russland-blog/

CONFERENCE IN CHERKASSY, UKRAINE, October 2009

Berlin, 10th Ocotober 2009: In October 14-16, 2009, the European Exchange will participate in the international conference on the topic “Ethical principles in public administration and societal monitoring: experience of Germany, Poland and Ukraine”. The conference will take place in Cherkassy, Ukraine, and is organized in the framework of the Project “International Partnership for Transparent Ukraine”. The European Exchange is a partner organization in the project implemented by the Foundation for Local Democracy Development (Poland) and the Pylyp Orlyk Institute of Democracy (Ukraine) from July to December 2009. The aim of the project is to strengthen the cooperation between European non-governmental organizations, and provide an effective framework for a larger project “Transparent Ukraine” that would draw on the success of “Transparent Poland” and embrace 25 cities of Ukraine. The project is financially supported by Norway Grants and the Programme “Trans-Border Partnership” of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland.

ACTION ON POLITICAL MURDERS - FOR A CONSTITUTIONAL RUSSIA!

Gemeinsamer_Aufruf_russischer_und_deutscher_Nichtregierungsorganisationen.pdf

Berlin, 7th October 2009: Russian and German non-governmental organizations signed a common declaration on the occasion of the third anniversary of the murder of Anna Politkovskaya. Three years ago, on 7th october 2006, the Russian journalist and civil rights activist Politkovskaya was murdered in the stairwell of her flat in Moscow. The case remains unsolved. For further information please open the paper above.

Opposition Movement in Armenia not ready to recognize results of Election of Erevan City Council as frauded

Erevan, 5th June 2009: On 31st May in Erevan, Armenia have been hold the elections of the Erevan City Council
and the next major of Erevan. The official vote results announced by the Central Election
Commission on Monday 1st June showed the ruling Republican Party with nearly 48 percent
of the vote as the winners. Another governing coalition member party, Prosperous Armenia,
finished with 22.7 percent. The Oppositional Armenian National Congress - a coalition of
different oppositional movements under the leadership of former president Levon Ter
Petrosjan - getting 17.4 percent of the votes.
Oppostition parties and independent observers from mass media and non governmental
movements widely criticised the elections as clearly falsificated. "Yesterday's poll was a
real shock for us. The whole process was accompanied by infringements of different scale;
there was great crowding and stuffing at polling stations." declared Amalia Kostanyan,
head of the Armenian Transparency International Organisation. Together with the Helsinki
Citizens Assembly of Vanadzor (HCAV), representatives of the Transparency International
witnesses ballot stuffing, bribery, violence against observers and journalist and numerous
infringements.
This assessment of Armenian civil society stands in clear contradiction of the findings of the
Council of Europe."Yerevan municipal elections were largely conducted in compliance with
European standards," says the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council
of Europe. The observation mission expressed its satisfaction with the electoral processes
on a press conference held in Erevan on June 1st but their words aroused doubt among
the reporters and contributed to deepen dissatisfaction with the findings of international
election observers in Armenian society.
The Armenian National Congres declared on monday evening not to pick up their mandates
as they would not accept the election results.

For more information please see:
http://www.a1plus.am/en
http://www.coe.int/t/congress/files/themes/observation/20090531-yerevan/default_en.asp
http://www.armenianow.com/?action=viewArticle&AID=3784&CID=3631&IID=1237&lng=eng
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwrHkAfpL5U&feature=channel

PANEL DISCUSSION: THE ROLE OF THE EU IN THE MODERNISATION OF RUSSIA - 6TH MAY IN BERLIN

Berlin, 7th May 2009: On the 6th of May 2010, European Exchange, together with the Representation of the European Commission in Germany and German-Russian Exchange, invited all those interested to a discussion on the role of the EU in Russian's modernisation and opportunites for cooperation between civil society actors. The discussion took place in the Representation of the European Commission, Unter den Linden 78, Berlin. The full invitation (in German) can be found here.

Invitation

"KIEV DIALOGUE" - 27TH AND 28TH OF APRIL 2010

Berlin, 28th April 2009: On the 27th and 28th April 2010, the fifth "Kiev Dialogue" took place in in the Heinrich Böll Stiftung, in Berlin. The theme for this year's dialogue was "Green New Deal in Ukrainian? The role of Germany and Ukraine for a modern European approach to energy politics". For more information, click here.

Voters' protest in Moldova

Chisinau, 10th April 2009: After the 5th April Parliamentary elections in Moldava there have been hold mass
protests agains the allegedly manipulated election results which brought 49,5 %
for the ruling communist party. According to eye witnesses up to 15.000 mostly
young people have joined the protests on April 6th. The development turned
tragic when unsanctioned protests continued on April 7th when more than 300
protesters have been detained, two died, dozens have been hurt and allegedly
tortured being in detention.

Find here a collection of the events compiled by Moldovian journalists.

Detailed information about the background of the protest in Moldova you may
find on the livejournal of Natalia Morar, Moldovian journalist, one of the co-
organisers of the youth protests on 6th April. Today she is under house arrest,
latest information from her dates from April 10th (in Russian language).

Reports of independent election monitoring network you may find under
http://www.e-democracy.md/en/elections/parliamentary/2009/monitoring/.

Outcomes of the Domestic Election Monitoring in Belarus

Minsk, 18th March 2009: Please find here a contribution of Stefanie Schiffer for the May issue of "Belarus News"

Exchange of views with representatives of the EU

Brussels, 5th March 2009: From March 3rd until March 5th Stefanie Schiffer and Adam Busuleanu from the European Exchange together with Ales Beliacki and Oleg Hulak, presidents of the Belarusian Human Rights Organisation Viasna and the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, visited Brussels in order to present the results of the domestic election monitoring during the parliamentary campaign 2008, which was supported by the European Commission.
In Brussels they met with representatives of the European Commission, the Consilium and the European Parliament, who are responsible for the relations with Belarus.
Moreover Stefanie Schiffer, Adam Busuleanu, Ales Beliacki an Oleg Hulak took part in the conference “EU and Belarus Six month After: Achievements and Challenges Ahead”, which was organized by the parliamentary groups of the Party of European Socialists and the European People’s Party in the European Parliament in cooperation with the Office for a democratic Belarus and the Pontis foundation.

To get more information about the Office for a democratic Belarus and to read more about the conference click here.

"Belarusian Journalism Today - Hopeless Enterprise or Light at the End of the Tunnel?"

Berlin, 18th February 2009: What does the new EU-Belarus dialogue contribute to freedom of expression and to working conditions of independent Belarusian journalists? Are there any serious improvements or is the admission of two independent newspapers just a symbolic act that will most likely not contribute to a greater access to independent information for Belarusian people? Under which conditions are Belarusian Journalists working and what problems do they face? What do they expect from the political dialogue between Belarus and the EU?
On Tuesday, 17th of February, the Belarusian journalist Liubou Luniova and the German journalist Ingo Petz discussed the current political situation in Belarus, the role of the media and the difficulties of working as a journalist in Belarus. Liubou Luniova (“Radio Svoboda Minsk) described the circumstances she has experienced and observed during the time of the parliamentary election. Furthermore she gave a short overview of the current situation in Belarus and outlined what challenges journalists have to face today. Ingo Petz expressed his journalistic experience in Belarus and stated his point of view on the new EU policy. Following the exchange of experience on the podium, the audience used the possibility to join the discussion, moderated by Stefanie Schiffer (European Exchange). The event took place in Berlin, in the “Club der polnischen Versager” and was held in cooperation with Lew Kopelew Forum Köln and with financial support from the Robert Bosh foundation and the DGO through the "Cooperation Program Belarus”.

UKRAINIAN ELECTION PARTY - SUNDAY 7TH FEBRUARY

Berlin, 5th February 2009: On Sunday the 7th February 2010, European Exchange held a party in the Club der polnischen Versager to accompany the Ukrainian presidential elections. Around fifty guests came to follow the live exit poll results, see our exclusive interviews with election monitors in the Ukraine, and to discuss the elections. We would like to thank everybody for coming and proving that interest in the Ukrainian democracy is alive and well.

Exhibition "Belarus 09-28-2008" at the Viadrina

Frankfurt,10th January 2009: The photo exhibition "Belarus 09-28-2008" had its final opening on Tuesday Janurary 20th at the European-University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder). The photos of three photographers and journalists, Anne Ackermann, Stephan Pramme, Jan Zappner, record personal and inspiring impressions of the Belarusian life during the parliamentary elections 2008 in Minsk, Grodno and Witebsk. The exhibition is held in the librarian gallery of the University and will be open to visitors until February 27th 2009.

A public discussion round on “Belarus and the new policy of the EU – Chances and risks for the civic society” organized by the European Exchange in cooperation with the chair of Eastern Europe’s history, took place right before the opening of the exhibition. Two guests, Anna Kanius, a Belarusian democratic movement activist and coordinator of long-term monitoring in the area of Brest in the elections of 2008 as well as Peter Liesegang, board member of the German- Belarusian association and an international long-term observer exchanged their observation experiences during the parliamentary campaign and discussed current possibilities and effects on the civic society by the European Unions policies towards Belarus. Adam Busuleanu from the European Exchange has moderated the discussion round. About 25 guests have joined the discussion.

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