YPC Weekly Newsletter

2002


“Media and Politics in Germany”

MEDIA AND POLITICS IN GERMANY

On May 27 a seminar “Media and Politics in Germany” was held in Yerevan. The seminar was organized by Friedrich Naumann Foundation in cooperation with Yerevan Press Club. Representatives of media, journalistic associations and NGOs of Armenia took part in the seminar. The Spokesman of the Free Democratic Party in Berlin (previously the Head of the Office of the former Foreign Minister, currently FDP faction leader in Bundestag Claus Kinkel) Rolf Steltemeier spoke about self-regulation of media and its importance for the freedom of information in Germany, the role of media in the election campaigns in Germany, the relations of media and Parliament in Berlin.

DISCUSSION SEMINAR OF THE FOUNDATION OF ASSISTANCE TO FREEDOM OF SPEECH HELD

On May 31 in Yerevan a discussion seminar on the application of the broadcast legislation was held. The event was organized by the recently established Foundation of Assistance to Freedom of Speech (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, May 11-24, 2002). In the seminar journalists, lawyers, human rights activists, representatives of non-governmental, also journalistic organizations, deputies to the RA National Assembly took part. In particular, the legal aspect of the broadcast licensing competitions announced by the National Commission on Television and Radio was analyzed. The meeting participants discussed the incongruences between the RA Law “On Television and Radio” and the Procedure of Holding Licensing Competitions as approved by the National Commission.

In spite of the invitation received, no official structures, except the press secretary of the RA Ministry of Justice, took part in the discussion. For this reason the clash of opinion expected failed to take place.

NATIONAL COMMISSION ON TELEVISION AND RADIO DID NOT REFUSE LICENSES TO “A1+” AND “NOYAN TAPAN” TV COMPANIES

On May 29 the answer of the National Commission on Television and Radio to the claim of the Chairman of the Public Council on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms Ashot Bleyan was received. Mr. Bleyan had appealed to the court of primary jurisdiction of Center and Nork-Marash communities of Yerevan demanding to recognize the decisions passed by National Commission on April 2, 2002, to be incongruent with a number of Armenia and international legal documents. The refusal of the National Commission to grant broadcast licenses to “A1+” and “Noyan Tapan” TV companies were qualified by Ashot Bleyan as a violation of the inseparable right of the plaintiff to the freedom of speech, belief and information (see YPC Weekly Newsletter, May 11-24, 2002).

It is noted in the response of the National Commission that it had never passed decisions of refusing broadcast licenses to “A1+” and “Noyan Tapan” and, therefore, the demand by the applicant is ungrounded.

The hearings on the case will soon be appointed.

“VAHAGN” PRIZES AWARDED

On May 25 at “Sayat-Nova” III Pan-Armenian Song Festival in Yerevan “Vahagn” prizes were awarded for the first time. The organizers of the annual (since 2000) Armenian song festival are the well-known American philanthropists Vahagn and Hasmik Hovnanians. Yet, this time “Hasmik and Vahagn Hovnanians” Benevolent Fund announced in autumn 2001 about the establishment of a new “Vahagn” annual prize. The prizes are awarded for the accomplishments of the last decade in the spheres of cinema, theater, fine arts, literature as well as for the best journalistic investigation of the past year.

The awardees in the nomination “for the best journalistic investigation” received monetary prizes ($1500 each). The winners were named to be:

Producer Harutyun Mansurian – for the TV films “In the Name of Republic of Armenia” and “Drug Addiction” of “Khndir” cycle produced by Internews Armenia;

Journalist Khachatur Dadamian – for the article “The Armenian Oil of Baku”, published in “Azg” daily;

The creative group of the “Investigation: Details” supplement of “Iravunk” newspaper.

“GOLOS ARMENII” IS 10 YEARS OLD

This week “Golos Armenii” newspaper celebrated its 10th anniversary.

Yerevan Press Club congratulates colleagues with the jubilee and wishes them success and prosperity.

“CIVILIZATION DIALOG” FOOTBALL CUP WON BY THE ARMENIAN ASSISTANCE FUND TEAM

On May 30 at the Yerevan “Dinamo” sports hall the final games of the third international mini-football tournament for the Cup “Dialog of Civilizations” organized by the Foreign Correspondents Association of Armenia took place. As it has already been reported, the tournament started on May 6, bringing together 10 teams (see details in YPC Weekly Newsletter, May 4-10, 2002).

The winner of the tournament was the Armenian Assistance Fund team, which defeated the team of the Embassy of Germany, scoring 6:2. It is now the owner of the “Civilizations Dialogue” Cup, made in Iran on the initiative of a great football lover, the IRI Ambassador in Armenia Mohammad Farhad Koleini. The third place was won by the US Embassy team, which managed to score the victory-making goal over the Iran Embassy players during the additional time (3:2). The latter won the “Fair Play” Cup.

The best player of the tournament was recognized to be the player of Germany Embassy team Armen Durgarian. The best shooter was the player of the Armenian Assistance Fund Hovhannes Stamboltsian. Our colleague from “A1+” TV company Gevorg Shegunts playing for the team of the Foreign Correspondents Association was named to be the best goalkeeper. The US Embassy team was acknowledged to be the most skillful team.

The funds raised by ticket sale, as it had been initially planned by the organizers of the benevolent tournament, were granted to help disabled children.