10 years that brought us closer to Europe

10 years ago it was difficult to imagine the quality and the depth of the steps that Armenia could take on the road to European integration. Throughout these years Armenia has become a full member of the Council of Europe, has reached a closer partnership with the European Union in the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy, later within the Eastern Partnership initiative and now our country is in the subsequent phase of the Association Agreement negotiations… One political process succeeds the other and parallel with that increases the number of those RA citizens who do not imagine their future without Europe.

Undoubtedly, European values are very close to Armenians ideologically, for the former is based on the Christian values’ system. However, the centuries-long lost statehood, the foreign rule, including the years in the USSR, have considerably alienated Armenia from what used to constitute a part of our culture and traditions for many centuries.

10 years ago, when our organization – NGO “European Integration” – was just taking its first steps, we realized that for Armenia the European integration is not only a glance into the future, but also a re-evaluation of identity from its past. Therefore, the promotion of European integration ideas across Armenia, the encouraging of objective discussions, as well as the debates around the problems occurring on its way have become some of the main goals of our organization. We have been to the regions of Armenia, visited a range of major and minor towns and villages, shared our views, as well as discussed with many where the path of European integration might lead us to and we always hold on to the belief that Armenia is a part of the Old World, the bearer of the same values and identity…

During the past 10 years our organization has implemented a number of projects that have somehow constituted a part of Armenia’s European integration path. We would like to express our deepest appreciation to all our partners and friends for supporting us in the implementation of many of our projects. Indeed, the conflict transformation, the work in Karabakh and the regions of Armenia, as well as the work with the youth are also important to us. And today, when we celebrate our 10th anniversary, we again reaffirm our adherence to the basic European values: we have always been and continue to be loyal supporters of equality and freedom, human rights and democracy.

We are pleased to state that Armenia is actually making significant steps towards the European integration. However, the speed and depth of the European integration process cannot be regarded as sufficient. Nor the efficiency of the work being carried out with the society can be regarded as such, as the complete understanding of the opportunities provided by the European integration is still insufficient. We call on all the supporters of the European integration to work more actively towards Armenia’s European integration. Indeed, Europe is no longer a vague future; it is already a tangible present…

NGO “European Integration” Board