FALL 2017

27 September 2017
Current Debates in Turkish Foreign Policy: the Case of Cyprus
Muzaffer Şenel, Assistant Professor, Director, Center for Modern Turkish Studies, Istanbul Sehir University

The aim is to map the current issues of Turkish foreign policy especially focusing on the Cyprus issue. The talk will discuss the positions of the key stakeholders, i.e, Turkish Cypriots, Greek Cypriots, Turkey, Greece and the UK together with the USA, UN, the EU and Russia. Developments after the UN-backed Annan Plan, the implications of EU membership of Greek Cypriots, and series of intensified talks will also be considered in the light of newly founded energy resources in the Eastern Mediterranean.

20 September 2017
LGBT issues in Armenia
Mamikon Hovsepyan, Executive Director, Pink Armenia

This seminar will examine the politics of LGBT issues in Armenia. What are the rights of members of the LGBT community and to what extent those rights are respected in the country? What does the government do to protect those rights and what more can it do? The absence of legislative arrangements to ensure the proper realization of LGBT persons’ rights allows homophobic people in society to carry out attacks against LGBT people. Moreover, the opinions of the law enforcement agencies are a hindrance to the disclosure of offenses committed against LGBT people. As a result, bringing perpetrators to justice is practically unsuccessful within the framework of existing legislation. What are organizations such as Pink Armenia and others doing to bring about greater recognition and protection of the rights of LGBT people?

6 September 2017
The Crisis in Democratic Governance in Armenia and the US
Eric Hacopian, Political Consultant, EDH & Associates (California, USA)

The seminar will compare and contrast the crisis in democratic governance in Armenia with the current political events in the United States and Western Europe. Comparison will be made between the underdevelopment of the democratic system in Armenia, specifically of its unique non-democratic, yet non-totalitarian political structure and the challenges to the legitimacy of traditional democratic politics expounding on last year’s Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s election to the presidency of the United States. We will discuss the specific areas of commonality and differences in detail and finish with a discussion of what these mean to the future of democratic politics in Armenia and in the West.