TRACING EUROPEAN JUSTICE
Almost every day we hear people speak about Europe, its values and standards of human rights. These values and standards are being praised and criticized; however, even those specialized in the relevant area often fail to fully comprehend them. Certain prerequisites are necessary in order to ensure the efficiency of Armenia’s integration to European Union. ”Protection of Rights without Borders” non-governmental organization intends to make its contribution to creating such prerequisites. On the road to reforms, Armenia has actively cooperated with EU and received advice on reforms in different areas. The focus has been on the reforms implemented in justice system, during which the RA has consistently introduced european experience by applying European guidlines in the RA legislation. Furthermore, the RA legislative system has been regularly monitored by European Union experts. In January 2013 PRWB also launched another project entitled “Empowering Armenian Judiciary through Studying EU Law”, which was funded by EU delegation to Armenia. The project’s main objective is to improve public knowledge of European Union (also referred to as EU) Court of Human Rights and European Court of Justice (also referred to as ECJ), strengthen Armenia – EU relations and ensure public awareness of their progress. Main components of the project are the teaching and awareness- raising of EU directives, as well as contributing to their effective performance. It intends to organize a series of debates, which will create a unique platform for discussing EU-Armenia processes, comprehending current state of the process of adopting EU directives and assessing the obstacles to its progress. This format of discussion will permit the participants to discuss wide range of crucial issues, such as the need for an Armenian law-enforcement officer to study the practice of EU court of human rights and ECJ, as well as suggest and seek solutions to the issues raised during the discussion. The debate will be video recorded and spread through different media. This will help us draw people’s attention to the issues raised during the debate, make them ponder over them and assess the EU integration processes in Armenia and simply be informed. During the project, an advocacy will be conducted to establish and promote the dialogue between civil society and decision makers in Armenia’s EU integration process. The advocacy will especially focus on developing efficient measures for eliminating gaps and collisions in the RA legislation and promoting the EU human standards in the RA legal system. The project has many training components. It intends to organize a variety of events for judges, public prosecutors, attorneys and lecturers in Law, such as a series of workshops on European Court of Justice and its case laws and EU human rights standards. Another component of the project is dedicated to organizing short-term and long-term training courses. To make the best of the project, the project team is going to actively cooperate with lecturers and boards of administration of leading HEIs, providing legal education in Armenia to involve them in the development of experimental courses and methodologies. The project team will also direct its best efforts to raise the interest of Law students in the training courses on ECJ, as well as in starting a career in the relevant field. An essay competition will be held during the project to raise students’ interest in EU and ECJ. The winners will be given awards and invited to take part in future programs of the Project. Moot Court, organized by European Court of Justice, is the best way of transferring practical knowledge about ECJ and its case law. The target of this component of the project is law students, as well as lecturers willing to develop effective skills in conducting courses on ECJ.
The winner team will participate in ”Trip to Justice” program and visit European Court of Justice in Luxembourg. The awareness-raising programs complement the awareness-raising campaign, which is targeted at promoting awareness of all the above-mentioned issues among general public and target groups of the project through distributing various informational materials and developing cooperation networks.