On February 21, 2002 in Baku, Azerbaijan a round table entitled “Compliance of Legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan with the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement” was convened by the Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) of the Organization for Security and Cooperation (OSCE), the Brookings Institution-City University of New York (CUNY) Project on Internal Displacement, the Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association (GYLA) and the Center of Legal and Economic Education (CLEE) based in Baku, Azerbaijan.

The round table was organized within the framework of a joint project involving the three countries of the South Caucasus: Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. The project was initiated and sponsored by the Brookings-CUNY Project, OSCE’s ODIHR, and GYLA, the latter acting as project coordinator. Two legal experts from each of the South Caucasus countries were recruited to produce research papers on the compatibility of their respective national laws with the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. Following the preparation of the research papers, round tables were organized in each of the South Caucasus countries to serve as a forum for presenting the findings of the research and to discuss internal displacement problems in each country and the region. Prior to the Baku meeting, round tables were held in Yerevan and Tbilisi.

The round table agenda covered introductory remarks by the organizers, presentations by the national experts and discussion of the report and other issues. A broad range of participants attended the meeting, in particular representatives from Government agencies, non-governmental organizations, international and regional organizations and research institutions. The meeting was co-chaired by Dr. Walter Kälin of the University of Bern, who had chaired the South Caucasus legal process, and Mr. Vladimir Shkolnikov of OSCE/ODIHR.