Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum

Exchange of letters on the issue of NGOs from conflict areas

A search by the Steering Committee (SC) of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP-CSF) for a formula which would allow bona fide non-governmental organisations from conflict areas such as Abkhazia or Transnistria to take part in the work of the Forum has led to an angry protest from the Mr Elkhan Suleymanov, head of the Azerbaijani Euronest parliamentary delegation. Mr Suleymanov has written to the SC accusing it of contradicting “the legal basis of relations of EaP countries with the EU”. Mr Suleymanov, has suggested that the SC initiative “is sabotage, and it may have successive, serious and heavy results in future, and at the same time is directed against the spirit and objectives of the EU’s EaP program”

The SC fully rejects these charges and explains in a reply to Mr Suleymanov’s letter that it merely wants to avoid having non-governmental organizations from conflict areas excluded, for no fault of their own, from the work of the Civil Society Forum.

Please find both documents, the letter of Mr Suleymanov and the reply of the SC below:

Letter of Mr Suleymanov

Reply of the Steering Committee

The Steering Committee received a reply from Mr Suleymanov in which he re-iterated his support for the work of civil society organisations on 11 May 2013. The reply is available here.

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