TRQN Participants' Stories
Anna Saakidou is a lawyer of Armenian descent living in Greece. For IOM’s Temporary Return of Qualified Nationals project she returned to Armenia for a few months to work as an advisor to the Chamber of Advocates of the Republic of Armenia. She also organized trainings and advised the chairman and the board.
When asked about what motivated her to return to Armenia she says: “We belong together no matter where we live. This personal connection is so strong that it is beyond cultural or political differences.”
“I was born in Armenia but grew up in Greece and studied in Paris, where I got involved with the Armenian community. As a lawyer, my area of interest is the European dimension. Working in different environments has given me a thorough understanding of cultural differences which I can utilize. IOM’s TRQN project gave me the opportunity to interact with Armenian lawyers which increased my understanding of international trends and patterns.”
On behalf of the Chamber of Advocates, Anna Saakidou organized training sessions for Armenian lawyers aimed at raising their professional qualifications. She assisted the chairman and his advisors with international relations and raised the prestige and experience of the Chamber of Advocates by facilitating exchanges with the Greece Bar Association as well as with law associations in other European countries. “International exchanges between lawyers are of vital importance in the current debate about the future of Europe. In times of economic crisis and following the European elections of May 2014, there is a need to deepen this discussion, stimulating new forms of civic participation.”