OSCE meeting on addressing all forms of intolerance and discrimination


Today, Pink representative Luiza Vardanyan participated in the Supplementary Human Dimension Meeting on Addressing All Forms of Intolerance and Discrimination. We raised the issue of discrimination against LGBT people in Armenia, noting that Armenia doesn’t have either comprehensive legal regulations to prevent discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or proper mechanisms to thoroughly investigate the cases of discrimination and hate crimes towards LGBT people. LGBT community avoids applying to law enforcement bodies, as they are offended and laughed at by the police officers and investigators. The state does not protect the LGBT community from hate speech, furthermore, authorities also spread hate speech towards them. We urge the state to eliminate discrimination against LGBT people by amending the legislation and creating effective mechanisms to combat it.

The delegation of Armenia (represented by Arman Hovhannisyan) mentioned that there is a draft of a law issuing equality, which is now a subject of public scrutiny. This draft defines the concept and forms of discrimination, the mechanism and legal procedures for the elimination and protection against discrimination. They also recalled the article 29 of the constitution of RA banning discrimination.

Savita Pawnday (the Deputy Executive Director of Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect and the speaker of the meeting) responded to Armenia, saying that to address the escalation of atrocity the state must start investigating all instances of discriminative behavior and dangerous public discourse, even if they come from political leaders and public figures, establish laws that prevent and criminalize hate speech, ensure that educational curricula promote diversity.