On 30-31 March, young politicians with various political affiliations from all over the South Caucasus and Ukraine came together to discuss achievements and challenges faced in the democratic processes underway in the region. Election campaigning and the role of the media in the democratic processes, women’s participation in the decision making process, and the strengthening of local self-governance were just a few issues highlighted in this forum.
A special feature this year was the keynote speech by the former Dutch minister of Defense, Eimert van Middelkoop, and the participation of five Dutch political youth organizations. The youth organizations gave a presentation on the role and functioning of their organizations in the Netherlands. Dutch political youth organizations are among the best organized youth organizations in Europe, partly due to their solid internal systems. The aim of the Dutch participants was to inspire young politicians in the region and also to be inspired by them and exchange ideas. The following youth organizations participated: CDJA (Christian Democratic Appeal Party), DWARS (Green Party), Perspectief (ChristianUnion Party), Young Democrats (Democrats 66 Party), Young Socialists (Labour Party).
Democracy is an ongoing and ever-evolving process in the South Caucasus and Ukraine. The Fourth Forum of Young Politicians of the South Caucasus and Ukraine remains a critical platform for political and policy debate by the region’s future decision makers. It was organized by NIMD’s Eastern European Neighbourhood office with support from the UK Conflict, Stability and Security Fund, the Parliament of Georgia, and the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Georgia and Armenia.