Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan completed a visit to Armenia on behalf of the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Population of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) from 19 to 22 May to gather information for his report on “The humanitarian consequences of the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan.”
He held meetings with parliamentarians, including the President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia, and with representatives of different ministries dealing with the humanitarian consequences of the conflict.
He also heard from displaced persons and the families of captives and the missing, and met with religious leaders, the Human Rights Defender of the Republic of Armenia, and civil society representatives.
Speaking upon his return to Ireland, Senator Gavan said:
“It was an intensive and productive visit with over 20 meetings completed. It was very useful in helping me to understand better the role and contribution of international organisations working on this issue in Armenia, including the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the United Nations agencies, in particular the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
“A lot of detailed evidence was provided, particularly in regard to concerns over missing persons.”
Senator Gavan plans to continue his work over the summer, visiting Azerbaijan to gather further information, and aims to complete his report in the autumn.