• Civil Society Institute

    43, Aygestan 11th str., Yerevan, 0025 Armenia

    (+37410) 574317

    (+37410) 559634


    The activities of CSI are geared towards increasing the efficacy of governmental bodies as well as non-governmental organizations while simultaneously supporting the development of civil society. It seeks to accomplish its goals and tasks within the framework of Human rights and Peacebuilding and conflict resolution departments. <p> CSI has representatives in the public monitoring boards of the Ministry of Justice and the Police. CSI is the member organization of International Federation for Human rights (FIDH) from Armenia.


    Civil Society Institute (CSI) is a non-governmental organization based in Yerevan which aims to assist and promote the establishment of a free and democratic society in Armenia. Established in 1998 and formerly known as Civil Society Development Union, CSI has implemented a series of programs, research and publications surrounding the principles of democracy and human rights.<p> Since its founding, CSI has worked on and continues to carry out programs revolving around the following initiatives: civil society development, penal system reform, human rights advocacy and awareness, peacebuilding and conflict resolution, freedom of information and anti-corruption, internship opportunities for the youth, secondary education reform, political advocacy and lobbying.



  • The problem of discrimination of women in Armenia. alternative report by ADC Memorial and CSI

    Human Rights defenders insist that to overcome discrimination against women, the governments of Armenia and Belarus must adopt a comprehensive anti-discrimination law that considers all forms and grounds of discrimination, including discrimination against women, ethnic and religious minorities, and foreigners and stateless people, as well as discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

  • Female convicts learn hairdressing (photos)

    12 female convicts, who are serving their sentence at “Abovyan” penitentiary institution and are preparing for release, are participating in a short-term hairdressing course organized by the “Civil Society Institute” NGO. The course started on July 1 and aimed to help women to acquire profession and get a job and stable income after serving their term in prison.

  • CSI organized photo trainings for school students from borderline communities of Armenia

    On March 22-25, 2016 Civil Society Institute in cooperation with PAN Photo organised photo training workshops for school students from borderline communities of Tavush region, Armenia. More than 40 young people participated in the training workshops. The photos and photo stories made by the trainees will be shown at the exhibition “Life in Frontline” to reflect daily life in the communities by eyes of young people living in the borderline communities.

  • CSI launched “Towards a Probation Service in Armenia” project

    The project aims to contribute to establishment of a fully-fledged functioning probation service in Armenia, as well as effective use of non-custodial and early release measures, and transition from punitive to restorative approach; to challenge the overuse of imprisonment; help decrease in the prison population; build proportionate responses to crime; and facilitate rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders...

  • British horizons supports prison reforms in Armenia

    On 23-27 November 2015 Civil Society Institute (CSI) with the support of the British Embassy in Yerevan in the frames of the British Horizons Initiative invited an expert in prison management Philip John Taylor OBE. Mr. Taylor has over 35 year experience working in prison system.

  • Release without delay all participants to peaceful assembly who are deprived of liberty in police. CSI statement

    "Police yet have to prove that the intervention into the enjoyment of the right to freedom of peaceful assembly was proportionate and necessary. At the moment it is clear that deprivation of liberty of the participants of the assembly is ungrounded and in violation of the law with the purpose to put pressure and intimidate the protestors",- says Artak Kirakosyan, Chairperson of the Civil Society Institute NGO.

  • EU-Armenia: Seeking More Efficient Support for Justice Sector Reform

    Ahead of the EU Eastern Partnership Summit, FIDH and its Armenian member organisation Civil Society Institute call on the EU to aim for more efficient support of the justice sector reform in Armenia. In its advocacy paper FIDH and CSI provide recommendations that would help promote reforms and reinforce the EU's monitoring tools used to assess their effectiveness.

  • The border community issues were discussed at the National Assembly of Armenia

    Director of CSI NGO Arman Danielyan participated in the parliamentary hearings on "Planning and implementation of civil protection'' organized by the Standing Committee on Defense, National Security and Internal Affairs of the National Assembly. NA deputies, representatives of different public bodies, regional governmental bodies, border communities and CSOs participated in the hearings.

  • “The Police Have Obviously Exceeded Their Authority”. CSI Statement

    On February 2, 2015 “Civil Society Institute” NGO issued a statement concerning the incident which had happened to the members of the “Founding Parliament” during the auto-rally to Artsakh. This incident is asssessed to be in violation of human rights and freedoms forbidden both under the RA and NKR Criminal Codes.

  • CSI has reported against the actions of Vagharsh Abrahamyan, the Head of the Gold Market

    On 1 October CSI reported to the Chief of Armenian Police and the Prosecutor on the events which had taken place several days before at Gold Market in M. Khorenatsi Street. It was claimed in the report to properly assess Head of the Market Vagharsh Abrahamyan’s actions and take measures within the jurisdiction including the institution of the criminal case.

  • CSI organized a training course on the activities of the International Criminal Court

    On July 22-23, 2014 “Civil Society Institute” NGO organized a two-day training course in Yerevan about the International Criminal Court (ICC). Representatives of Armenian NGOs and media, lawyers and young activists participated in the training. The Communication Officer of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court Niall Matthews presented the role of the court, its development history, functions and jurisdiction.

  • Civil Society Institute assists to capacity building and development of South Caucasus NGOs

    Civil Society Institute, Armenia organized a three-day training workshop on the topic “Strategic Planning of Organization” on July 17-20, 2014 in Tbilisi, Georgia in the framework of the project “Assisting in development of sound civil society through strategic planning and implementation”. Eighteen representatives of NGOs and civic initiatives from Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan participated in the training.

  • Armenian delegation studied Georgian experience in use of probation and alternative punishments

    On June 30-July 2, 2014 a delegation representing various governmental institutions of the Republic of Armenia visited Georgia to study Georgia’s experience in establishment and operation of the probation system and practice of use of non-custodial sentences and measures. The study trip was organized by Civil Society Institute non-governmental organization and Penal Reform International.

  • A. Danielyan: «Europe Day is a good opportunity to show the work we have accomplished»

    «Europe Day is already a traditional holiday for all of us, and is also a good occasion to show the work we have accomplished. We've preferred to present ourselves in this format as we think every person should be aware of his/her basic rights while being in the police department in order to be safe and avoid torture», noted Arman Danielyan.

  • Joint Statement concerning the application of detention as a measure of restraint in Armenia

    Civil Society Institute (CSI) and International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) released joint statement on the application of detention as a measure of restraint in Armenia. "Recent cases of pre-trial detention in Armenia once again raise the issue of the routine application of measures of constraint by judges in violation of the international human rights standards"...

  • Series of Trainings on Transitional Justice

    On February 24-26, March 3-5 and March 10-12 new training sessions on Transitional Justice took place in the framework of the Coalition for Rebuilding of Trust projectimplemented in Armenia by the Civil Society Institute in partnership with the Caucasus Institute. Beneficiaries are human rights activists, journalists and students.

  • NHC tries to create Coalition for Trust in South Caucasus

    On February 18-21 2014 the Secretary-General of the Norwegian Helsinki Committee Bjørn Engesland, Head of Human Rights Education Department at the NHC Enver Djuliman and the Regional Coordinator of the projects “Coalition of rebuilding of trust” Marion Kipiani visited Georgia and Armenia.

  • Right to a fair trial in Armenia in 2013

    The passing year hasn't brought any significant changes in respect to the securing of the right to a fair trial. CSI notes, that systemic problems which were frequently raised during the previous years are still urgent today. In Armenia the independence and impartiality of courts is not guaranteed and they are still dependent on public prosecution service.

  • Serious Torture Prevention Action Plan is expected from the State

    On June 27, 2013 the Conference on “Refraining from Torture and the Right to Rehabilitation-2013” took place. "The practice of torture established in our country since the first years of Soviet era cannot be overcome by a mere statement of the Head of Police or by convicting few police officers", told CSI President Arman Danielyan in his opening speech.

  • Flash-mob «It is not allowed to detect crimes by means of beating» (photos)

    On 26 June, 2013 a flash-mob with the following mottos «Torture is a crime», «Punish torturers», « It is not allowed to detect crimes by means of beating », «I have to be protected by the law» took place at the Northern Avenue of Yerevan. The event was organized by “Civil Society Institute” NGO.

  • NGOs submit recommendations for torture prevention

    The 26th of June is proclaimed by the UN as the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, and it has been observed since 1997. Today “Civil Society Institute” NGO together with “Foundation Against Violations of Law” NGO organized a march and picketing with a motto “Armenia without torture”. During the march letters with a number of recommendations aimed at torture prevention were handed to the relevant state bodies.

  • International Day in Support of Victims of Torture Marked in Armenia

    Civil Society Institute (CSI) and Foundation Against the Violation of Law (FAVL) are teaming up for a series of events on 26 – 27 June 2013 to mark the United Nations’ International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, 26 June. Activists from both organisations will start their activities on the morning of 26 June with a march and picket in front of several relevant state bodies.

  • Yerevan Municipal Elections are Held in Extremely Tense Conditions

    Civil Society Institute non-governmental organization states that the elections are being held in extremely tense conditions, as compared to previous elections carried out in Armenia in the recent years. Mass voter directions are observed both inside and outside the polling stations. Psychological and physical pressure is exerted against the participants of election process.

  • CSI Implements the Municipal Elections – 2013 Legal Initiative

    Towards the municipal elections in Yerevan, the Civil Society Institute (CSI) is implementing the Municipal Elections – 2013 legal initiative, which aims to protect rights of citizens throughout the electoral process. During the whole period our hotline 080-080-804 will be operating to provide free legal assistance on any issues concerning the elections.

  • CSI presented human rights issues in Armenia to the UN

    “For 5 years the law-enforcement bodies were not able to investigate 10 murders of March 1, 2008 because they have been looking for perpetrators among the protestors and could not identify,- says CSI President Arman Danielyan and suggests the SIS to pay attention to the conduct of the law enforcement bodies as well.

  • Armenia urged to implement UPR commitments and recommendations

    Civil Society Institute (CSI), the Norwegian Helsinki Committee (NHC) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) have submitted a mid-term assessment (May 2010–December 2012) following recommendations by the United Nations Human Rights Council at Armenia’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in May 2010.

  • CSI's Response to the Video Message Issued by the RA Police

    On March 20, the Civil Society Institute responded to a video material issued by the RA Police which had criticized the organization’s recently launched Study on Ill-treatment and Torture of Juveniles in the Republic of Armenia.

  • No cases were instituted on facts of cruel treatment against juveniles

    On 13 March 2013 in Yerevan a presentation of the research report on cruel treatment and torture against juvenile was held. In the framework of the research 86 juvenile offenders were interviewed. Only 8 interviewees mentioned that they had been subjected to physical violence at the police. However, 51 per cent of them have heard about cases of cruel treatment and torture in relation to other children.

  • Armenian Legislation on Torture does not comply with the international standards

    On March 13, 2013 Study on Ill-treatment and Torture against Juveniles in the Republic of Armenia has been presented in Yerevan. “Civil Society Institute” NGO expert, co-author of the study Tatevik Gharibyan presented the current issues in the legislation on torture. According to her, the definition of torture used in the Criminal Code does not comply with the definition provided in the UN Convention against Torture.

  • The study has revealed the cases involving violations of the rights of juveniles

    On March 13, 2013 Study on Ill-treatment and Torture against Juveniles in the Republic of Armenia was presented in Yerevan. The study was conducted in cooperation of UNICEF, Civil Society Institute and Penal Reform International organizations together with the Office of Human Rights Defender and funded by the EU.

  • There are many issues in the penitentiary institution for juveniles

    «The penitentiary institution for juveniles shall be not the institution for punishment but, most importantly, a social institution, where people work on rehabilitation,” points out Arman Danielyan, president of Civil Society Institute NGO. In his opinion, juvenile justice in Armenia does not correspond to internationally accepted standards.

  • The goal of juvenile justice should be rehabilitation not punishment

    On November 19 the presentation of the study “Juvenile Justice in Armenia: Legislative Analysis” was held by the Civil Society Institute NGO. In the study it is stressed out that juvenile justice system of Armenia does not comply with the accepted international standards. There is no special legislative act on juvenile justice, specialized judges, prosecutors and defense lawyers; there is no general policy on crime prevention etc.

  • The work with juveniles in the Penitentiary institution

    On July 4th Civil Society Institute NGO organized a workshop to present the main issues revealed during the research of the social-psychological work conducted with juveniles and of the educational process in «Abovyan» Penitentiary institution (PI).

  • Juvenile Justice: Reform suggestions

    “While administering Juvenile Justice it is important that juveniles are not involved in criminal proceedings and alternative measures should be enforced, the justice should move from penal to restorative functions. The work with juveniles should include psychologists, social workers”, believes Penal Reform International Regional Director Tsira Chanturia.

  • Yerevan Municipal Elections Online

    During the whole day of Yerevan Municipal elections the work of the Legal hotline was presented on At 8:00 ambulance cars started their work. 20 cars went to different districts of the city. The staff of each car was comprised of one lawyer, a proxy, an activist, and a journalist. The work of the cars was coordinated according to the calls received by the hotline.

  • Legitimacy of pre-election process is threatened

    On May 11, 2009 at Avan district of Yerevan city women from Armenian National Congress opposition party were beaten, while distributing leaflets informing on May 13th pre-election meeting. They were chased, attacked, and thrown stones. Three women were taken to hospital as they were injured.