The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) is a strategic research centre based in Yerevan. Founded in 1994, it is the institutional initiative of Raffi K. Hovannisian, Armenia's first Minister of Foreign Affairs, who remains ACNIS' President.
ACNIS is currently headed by Richard Giragosian, a frequent commentator on Armenia and regional issues for the Turkish and international media. Giragosian is an analyst specialising in international relations with a focus on economics, military security and political developments in the former Soviet Union, the Middle East and Asia. He is also a guest columnist for the Turkish-language edition of Newsweek and an editorial consultant for Turkish Policy Quarterly. Giragosian worked for nine years at the US Congress. He has also worked as a consultant for various organisations, including the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), World Bank, International Crisis Group (ICG) and the US military.
ACNIS holds a number of public events, including seminars, roundtable discussions and briefings, all of which cover issues ranging from foreign policy to domestic topic of critical significance. Summaries of most events and all reports are available on the ACNIS website (www.acnis.am).
Recent ACNIS work on Armenian-Turkish issues “One year later: the Armenian-Turkish ‘protocols.’ Where we have come & where are we going?”
13 October 2010, Yerevan
ACNIS hosted a special briefing on 13 October, with ACNIS Director Richard Giragosian assessing the past year of developments in Armenian-Turkish diplomacy. The briefing was formally entitled, “One year later: the Armenian-Turkish ‘protocols.’ Where we have come & where are we going?”
The briefing featured special guest Burcu Becermen, from the International Hrant Dink Foundation, who discussed the future of Armenian-Turkish relations and presented an overview of the “Beyond Borders” initiative, which promotes people-to-people contacts and cooperation between Armenian and Turkish civil society organizations.
“One year later: the Armenian-Turkish protocols. What has changed?”
12 October 2010, Yerevan
The Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) convened its third “ACNIS Youth Forum” on 12 October entitled, “One year later: the Armenian-Turkish protocols. What has changed?” timed with the one-year anniversary of the signing of the Armenian-Turkish “protocols.”
ACNIS Youth Forum assessed the issue of Armenian-Turkish diplomacy and from a youth perspective, discussed what has changed and what was significant about the protocols.
Three ACNIS interns offered presentations examining the issue of Armenian-Turkish protocols. Analyzing the past year of difficult Armenian-Turkish diplomacy since the signing of the protocols, Armine Badalyan began with a presentation entitled, “Looking back: what happened?” that was followed by a presentation, “Where are we now?” by Emma Petrosyan, that assessed the current deadlock in diplomacy between the two countries.
ACNIS intern Stella Aleksanyan then gave the third and final presentation, entitled, “Looking to the Future: where are we going?” that focused on evaluating the road ahead for Armenian-Turkish relations. A group of ten high school students from the “Quant” School in Yerevan also actively participated in the Youth Forum.
23 September, 2010
ACNIS hosted a group of Turkish journalists who were in Yerevan within the framework of a visit organized by the Istanbul-based Hrant Dink Foundation.
"Armenian-Turkish Diplomacy: An Update"
On 22 April 2009 ACNIS held a seminar on developments in Armenian-Turkish diplomacy, timed to coincide with preparations for the 24 April commemoration of the Armenian genocide. Guests included prominent Armenian-American historian and scholar Richard G. Hovannisian, Professor of Armenian and Near Eastern History at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and ACNIS Founder Raffi K. Hovannisian.
The seminar featured four main presentations. ACNIS Director Richard Giragosian reported on a recent visit to Turkey and offered an assessment of the current stage of Armenian-Turkish negotiations. Professor David Hovannisyan, the Director of the Center for Civilization and Cultural Studies at Yerevan State University, presented an overview of Armenian-Turkish relations. Ms. Vercihan Ziflioglu, a reporter with the Istanbul-based Hurriyet Daily News, offered a Turkish perspective on the recent developments. Ashot Soghomonyan of Yerevan State University concluded with a presentation on "The Challenge of Armenian-Turkish Relations."
"Closed Briefing" on current developments
On 6 August 2009 ACNIS organised a closed briefing to address three of the most significant current developments in the region: the fallout from Iran's post-election crisis, with a focus on the implications and lessons for Armenia; an update on the status of Turkish-Armenian diplomacy; and a review of the mediation efforts for a negotiated resolution to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
Armenian-Turkish Diplomacy & Nagorno-Karabakh: "Deal or No Deal?"
On 5 November 2009 ACNIS convened a roundtable discussion on recent developments in Armenia-Turkey relations and the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. The event was attended by several ambassadors and senior diplomatic officials from the European Commission, the EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus, representatives from the Council of Europe and the OSCE, as well as staff from the British and U.S. embassies and the Armenian Ministry of Defence.
ACNIS Senior Analyst Manvel Sargsian presented an analysis of the Armenian-Turkish "protocols" signed on 10 October in Zurich and Richard Giragosian gave an assessment of developments since the signing of the protocols. The two presentations were followed by a lively exchange between Armenian parliamentarians, leading Armenian analysts, experts and journalists. The Center has published each of the presentations and a report from the meeting.
The following is a brief summary of Turkey-related publications released in 2009:
- "The Ruling Authorities' Lack of Legitimacy and the Society's Psychological Problems in the Domain of Armenian-Turkish Diplomacy," by ACNIS Analyst Armine Ghazarian, May 2009 (in Armenian)
- "What Can Erdogan Say to Azerbaijan?," by ACNIS Senior Analyst Manel Sargsian, May 2009 (in Russian)
ACNIS Special Briefings Series No. 1, Iran, Turkey-Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh
- ACNIS Special Briefing No.2: "Turkish-Armenian Diplomacy: Where are we?"
- "Armenian-Turkish Relations: an Unwilling Dialogue," by Manvel Sargsian, September 2009 (in Russian)
- "The Psychological Peculiarities of 'Normalizing' Armenian-Turkish Relations," by Armine Ghazarian, October 2009 (in Armenian)
- "The Genocide Factor in Armenian-Turkish Relations," by Manvel Sargsian, October 2009 (in Russian)
ACNIS Policy Brief No. 4, Armenian-Turkish Diplomacy & Nagorno-Karabakh
- "Nagorno Karabakh is yet again at the Epicentre of International Attention," by Manvel Sargsian (in Russian)
- "Armenian-Turkish Diplomacy & Nagorno-Karabakh: Deal or no Deal?," by Richard Giragosian, November 2009 (in English)
Armenian Center for National and International Studies
75 Yerzinkian Str.Yerevan 0033, Armenia
Tel: +374 10 528780 or 274818;
Fax: +374 10 524846
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