The European Union has announced the launch of the second phase of the civil society programme European Partnership for the Peaceful Settlement of the Conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh (EPNK). This programme aims to support peace-building efforts concerning the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh by facilitating dialogue between civil society, media and policy-makers.
Established under the Instrument for Stability – the EU’s special financial instrument created to support the peaceful settlement of conflicts, de-escalation of tensions and post-conflict rehabilitation worldwide – EPNK is a consortium of five European NGOs, which seeks to work with local partners in the South Caucasus on a wide range of peace-building projects and to help improve conditions for the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict settlement process.
The programme promotes a dynamic dialogue between a broad range of policymakers, media and civil society from all sides of the conflict. It also supports a wider participation of conflict-affected people in the peace process, including women, youth, internally displaced persons and refugees.
Programme activities are arranged around three main themes: media, public policy and conflict-affected groups. They aim to:
- Broaden the base of participation in peace-building initiatives, with special attention given to marginalised groups;
- Build confidence between all sides of the conflict through increased people-to-people contact;
- Promote fresh analysis and new ideas that challenge existing discourses on the conflict with peace-oriented visions of the future, and
- Actively engage civil society in dialogue with policy makers at national and international levels on the transformation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
The EPNK programme will last three years and is a continuation of a programme launched in 2009 under the Instrument for Stability.