Since 2018, in cooperation with the Civil Society Institute in Yerevan and the Humanitarian Research Public Union in Baku, inmedio peace consult has been working on a project series aiming at the creation of a resource network of local facilitators for sustainable (cross-country) dialogue in and between Armenia and Azerbaijan. This year’s project builds on previous projects in 2018 and 2019. For the last three years, the project has been continuously funded by the German Foreign Ministry’s Eastern Partnership program. In December 2022, members of the dialogue network have published a recammandations-paper on civil-society dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan (available also in Azerbaijani and Armenian) as well various  articles pointing at the human suffering of war-affected people:  In search of a brother’s grave (also in Russian and Azerbaijani) and a morrioring Article about local people’s stories from the Armenian-Azerbaijani border (also in Russian and Armenian); ‘The womens’ side of war’ in Azerbaijani, Russian and English (November 2021) which was mirrored by parallel activities in Armenia and the article ‘Overcoming war traumas’ in ArmenianRussian and English, a more receent

The project onset in  2018  started with reviving the confidence among border villagers of Armenia and Azerbaijan. After separate preparatory seminars in the two countries, a group of 18 participants living in different villages close to the border/cease-fire-line, including individuals from Karabakh, were then brought together in Berlin. They are particularly affected by the conflict – living under a constant security threat through exposure to snipers or the line of fire of military posts from the other side. “When you celebrate a wedding we can hear it … we just cannot attend” – This was one of the heart touching statements made by a participant. Only 400m lie between her village and the one on the other side of the closed border. The workshop contributed to empowering the villagers and helped them to cope with the constant security threat they face. Various ways how they could help each other to avoid unwanted escalation were discussed. A lively discussion took off when the participants presented pictures from their everyday life. Participants told us that this was a crucial element for trust building. Here is the photobook that was created on that basis.

In  2019 , the focus was on training 16 participants (8 people from Armenia or Nagorno-Karabakh and 8 from Azerbaijan) in dialogue facilitation in the context of the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh. The group underwent a joint 12-day training programme in Yerevan, Baku, Berlin and Tbilisi, focussing on skills, methods and attitudes of dialogue facilitation. Thereupon, the participants independently designed and organised 8 dialogue and encounter workshops in (partly cross-border) teams, which together reached about 100 people directly. The highlight was a cross-border workshop which brought together participants from Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia and Azerbaijan in Tbilisi at the end of November 2019. All workshops were very well received by the participants and helped to take steps towards better mutual understanding.

In  2020 due to COVID-restrictions we had to learn to conduct our meetings online, which at least had the positive side-effect that we were prepared so during and after the 44-war in autmn 2022 network-members were able to stay in touch. Project activities due to the war had to be redesigned. Network members startetd to engage in mirroring subprojects in Azerbaijan and Armenia in order to provide support for war-affected groups, sesitise teachers and social workers in dealing with traumatised individuals, conduct narrative interviews and collect testimonies of war-affected women. Cross-border exchange about these projects was conducted online. A manual for combining dialogue and trauma related work was developed and used in both countries.  In November 2021 the chairman of our Azerbajani partner organisation, Avaz Hasanov, passed away totally unexpected. His death was a great loss and shock for our network and for civil-society efforts towards a peaceful resolution of the Nagorny Karabakh conflict in general. A tribute to Avaz has been published (in Russian) on BBC. Reflections of his friend and Armenian counterpart Artak Kirakosyan, director of the Civil Society Insitute in Yerevan can be read here. We are happy that the network continues even after Avaz’ death and will hopefully also cope with the challenges of three violent military flare-ups in 2022 and a serious situation at the Latchin corridor since December 2022.

Previous Projects: From 2009 to 2016 inmedio cooperated with the Catholic University of North Rhine-Westphalia (KatHo) in a project funded by the program Conflict Prevention in South Caucasus of the German Academic Exchange Service. Seven workshops took place that brought together Armenian and Azerbaijani youth, University lecturers and NGO representatives.

For more information, please contact the project lead Iryna Donchenko (

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