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YEREVAN, JUNE 2, ARMENPRESS: Armenian Center for National and International Studies (ACNIS) has launched today a two-day seminar in Yerevan titled “NATO After Prague Summit: Prospects for Regional Cooperation” just less than two weeks left before the start of NATO-supported Best Cooperative Effort-2003 military exercises to be hosted by Armenia. the first ever NATO-supported exercises within the frameworks of Partnership for Peace (PfP) program are slated to start June 16.

Professor Tatul Manaserian, ACNIS director fro research, said the exercises will be a step forward towards Armenia’s closer cooperation with NATO. He also cited Russia’s growing cooperation with the Alliance and Armenia’s neighbors= Georgia’s and Azerbaijan’s drive towards joining it.

The two-day gathering is to make the public at large aware of new developments concerning formation of new peace systems. Manaserian reiterated the official Yerevan’s position that joining the Alliance is not on Armenia agenda, which strives for closer cooperation with NATO, as apart from being a military organization, it is also a political structure helping development of science in partner countries. He said NATO’s Science for peace program provides good possibilities for developing science, but added that Armenia does not use this opportunity at a scale it can afford.

Manaserian also stressed the need for joint cooperation for eliminating the aftereffects of human-made and natural calamities and emergencies, irrespective of political developments.

Among other high-ranking Armenian officials and experts the seminar is attended also by ambassadors of Iran, India and Russia in Armenia.

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