YEREVAN (RFE/RL) — Armenia and the European Union have never been closer than today, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini said in a video address to participants of the European Planning Meeting being held in Yerevan these days.
The annual event held in the Armenian capital for the first time has brought together 220 youth workers from 24 European countries.
“I know this is the first time that you hold your annual meeting in this part of Europe. And the moment you’ve chosen is just perfect,” Mogherini, who is also vice-president of the European Commission, said in her address to the young people.
“Last November we had a very important summit in Brussels with our six partners in Eastern Europe, and with Armenia, in particular, we signed three groundbreaking agreements. We signed a new partnership agreement that we hope can make the lives of our citizens much easier both in Armenia and the European Union.
“For instance, if you are a young Armenian engineer, it will be much easier for you to work inside the European Union and vice versa. Armenian universities will now have access to the European Union’s programs for research and innovation that is the biggest international research program in the world. We also signed new agreements to improve connections between the European Union and Armenia both by plane and on the road.”
In her remarks addressed to the young participants of the forum in Yerevan Mogherini stressed that the EU dreams of “a European continent where borders are not an obstacle, but a gateway for young people like you.”
“And we have asked civil society and civil society organizations in particular to help us make these agreements truly successful with your suggestions and recommendations,” the senior EU official said.
The Comprehensive and Enhanced Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between the EU and Armenia was signed by Mogherini and Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian in Brussels on November 24. The Armenian government approved the 350-page deal in December and the CEPA’s approval by the Armenian parliament is expected later in March.