A second International Conference on Freedom of Information was held in Aghrevan (Armenia) on July 11 through July 14. The first similar meeting took place in Telavi in May, 2009 (http://www.idfi.ge/?cat=news&topic=50〈=en). The organizer of the conference was the National Security Archive (USA), and the host organization was the Committee to Protect Freedom of Expression (Armenia).
The participants invited to the conference from Georgia were non-governmental organization working on the issues of freedom of information – Institute for Development of Freedom of Information, Georgian Young Lawyers' Association, Transparency International Georgia, also representatives of the Iv. Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University and Ministry of Internal Affairs Archive Administrations. An exchange of the accumulated experience and best practice of the US, Russian Federation, Georgian, Armenian and Azerbaijani media and non-governmental sectors took place at the conference. Attendees were instructed in detail on the developments of freedom of information principles in the participating countries.
A director of the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information Giorgi Kldiashvili presented to the colleges annual summary of activities conducted by the Institute and planned projects. Project coordinator of the Institute Levan Avalashvili presented a report on the development and prospects of the electronic democracy.
Participants of the Conference decided to further strengthen existing coalition format partnership, which was formed after the meeting in Telavi. Conception of the educational programs concerning freedom of information and development of special courses for Institutions of Higher Education was planned as one of the priorities of the coalition work (such a practice is already being used successfully in Armenia for several years). Another important issue was formulation of international standards for online monitoring. The US partners have expressed favoritism toward unification of the parameters used to monitor official government websites in Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia. Monitoring by one of the most advanced e-governments will mean a major step towards strengthening the international standards.
By the decision of the participants of the conference a coalition activities council was formed. Georgia is represented in this council by a staff member of the Institute for Development of Freedom of Information.
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