Armenia – Police Reform as a Cooperative Effort

Lessons Learned from An International Advisory Mission 2014– 2017

  • Fluri Philipp
  • Parsons Timothy
doi: 10.32561/nsz.2022.3.3


Reform, as opposed to revolution, is an iterative process. It is also non-linear. You may not be getting it right the first time. At least not completely right. The authors of this article had the privilege and the pleasure of being invited to advise on the police reform process in the Republic of Armenia from 2014 through 2017 (the introduction of a form of ‘community policing’ had been announced in 2012 but failed to gain traction in the interim). In close cooperation with the then OSCE Office in Yerevan (OiY) and obviously the Armenian authorities, and at times the EU and US representatives, the authors – after taking inventory of existing policies, laws, directives, and regulations, and analysing them in light of internationally recognized good practice -- designed and delivered instruction programs for police officers at different levels, including leadership. In parallel, and as part of a ‘two-pronged’ approach, they contributed to structuring and informing an enabling political (parliamentary) process, including civil society organisations, in close cooperation with the then chairman of the Standing Committee on Defense, National Security and Internal Affairs of the National Assembly, Mr Koryun Nahapetyan, though the police force at the time was still kept close to the presidency. The authors feel encouraged by and welcome recent steps taken by the Pashinyan government to reanimate the police reform process in the RA. It is understood that police reform necessarily is an ongoing process of reflection and implementation on the one hand, structured by focussed phases of more intense political fact-finding and operational structuring on the other. In this article the authors share their observations from the days of their own involvement with added insights on the later evolution of police reform and practice.


Armenia police reform reform status assessment Rule of Law OSCE Office in Yerevan (OiY) Rights Without Borders Police Education Police Transparency and Accountability Human Rights and Civic Freedoms Community Police


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