ROUND TABLE CONCERNING IMPLEMENTATION OF OBLIGATIONS UNDERTAKEN WITHIN FRAMEWORK OF AARHUS CONVENTION BY ARMENIA ON ISSUE OF DALMA GARDENS TO BE ORGANIZED IN MAY

Noyan Tapan
May 02 2006

YEREVAN, MAY 2, NOYAN TAPAN. A round table concerning implementation of
obligations undertaken within the framework of the Aarhus convention
by Armenia in the process of building of Dalma gardens will be held
in Yerevan on May 10. Representatives of the "Center for Regional
Development" ("Transparency International-Armenia"), "Human Rights
Protection Armenian Center after Sakharov" and "Armenian Botanical
Society" public organizations informed about it at the April 28
press-conference. Representatives of the RA Government and the Yerevan
Mayor's Office are invited to the round table being organized by the
above-mentioned NGOs. Participants of the press-conference informed
that by its April 7, 2006 expert's conclusion, the Aarhus Convention
Compliance Committee recongized the Armenian authorities' actions
relating to the request concerning Dalma gardens not corresponding to
a number of articles of the Aarhus Convention. At the same time the
committee presented proposals to the RA Government on the occasion
of stimulating usage of principles of the Aarhus Convention. The
committee, at the same time, proposes to undertake practical and
legislative events in the direction of solving existing problems of
accessibility of information relating to environment, to secure the
practical usage of processes of society's participation in all levels
of making decisions, to undertake corresponding practical events in the
direction of securing accesibility of justice, etc. The conclusion was
made in responce to 3 NGOs' application sent in 2004. The application
touches upon problems of accesibility of information and public
participation in processes of making decision by the RA Government on
the occasion of change of purposeful meaning of lands and tenancy of
some plots of Dalma gardens of Yerevan. According to conclusion of the
committee, by not giving corresponding information to applicants by
bodies implementing functions of public management, Armenia violated
principles of Article 4 of the convention, and by not securing
complete participation of the society in the process of concrete
decisions concerning building, it partly violated principles of
a number of other articles of the convention. The RA Government
violated principles of the convention as well, not securing the right
of interested representatives of the society to apply for court
examination. To recap, before addressing to the Aarhus Convention
Compliance Committee, the Yerevan Court of First Instance of Kentron
and Nork-Marash communities refused to accept the claim of NGOs to
recognize the RA Government's decisions invalid because of their
not corresponding to the Aarhus Convention, and the RA Court of
Cassations Chamber on Economic and Civil Cases left the complaint of
the organizations concerning overturning the above-mentioned decision
without upholding.