State of Armenian Migrants Working in Turkey

Feb 15-17, Istanbul-Ankara, Turkey

Eurasia Partnership Foundation (EPF), Global Political Trends Center at Istanbul Kultur University (GPoT) and Economic Policy Research Foundation in Turkey (TEPAV) organized two presentations on migration in Istanbul and Ankara in February, as  part of EPF’s project “Research of the state of Armenian migrants working in Turkey,” funded by the Norwegian government and USAID.

At the presentations, high-profile experts (including representatives of government, state agencies, universities, foreign embassies and media) discussed the findings of EPF’s research to identify the state of Armenian migrants in Turkey. The qualitative research is an attempt to more accurately determine what migrants’ experiences are in Turkey, dispel myths based on anecdotal evidence, as well as increase awareness among Armenian and Turkish stakeholders of issues related to Armenian irregular migration to Turkey. The research included up to 150 in-depth interviews with key stakeholders including local government representatives, NGOs, business leaders, and migrants themselves. It also included five focus group discussions in Turkey with representatives of non-governmental organizations working on migration issues, businesses interested in or currently employing migrants, civil society activists, and media.

Prior to the presentations in Turkey, EPF held a series of similar presentations and discussions on the research findings in Yerevan, including one presentation there for leading Turkish journalists in December 2009. The research initiated public discussion. The presentations in Armenia echoed in Turkey, and members of the media society in Istanbul and Ankara had expressed its interest in attending presentations in Turkey. A number of special articles have been devoted to the project and to the report findings.

For the media responses to the presentations in Turkey see:  http://todayszaman.com/tz-web/news-201764-101-illegal-armenian-immigrants-uneasy-in-the-spotlight-as-tensions-rise.html ;

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=children-education-main-problem-of-armenian-illigal-workers-2010-02-16

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